Nerd! (We love BOOKS)

“The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who cannot read them.” – Mark Twain

BOOKS! If there is anyone out there that doesn’t get excited at the mere thought of a good book, whose limbs don’t start to get jumpy at the thought of entering a book shop feeling like they are inches away from discovering buried treasure, they are no friend of mine.

I usually have a sampling of books going all at once. Topics range from health, to personal wellness, to fiction, to art. I also read cookbooks front-to-back like novels, so let’s toss those in as well.

Today I just wanted to give you a sampling of some new books focusing on vegan cooking or health. Let’s start the party!

American Vegan Kitchen: Delicious Comfort Food from Blue Plate Specials to Homestyle Favorites by Tamasin Noyes $18.95    Okay, you know the show Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives? I LOVE that show, despite the fact that I wouldn’t eat 98% of the food mentioned. There is something so homespun and personal about hearing the stories of happy people, across the country, making a living cooking something special for the people in their community. (Am I getting sappy?)  DON’T DESPAIR, READER – this book is like your paperback equivalent of that show! It has over 200 vegan recipes from diners and cafes across the country, including cajun pot pie, yankee cornbread, and spicy balsamic maple “wings”.  Um…. seconds, please.

Moosewood Restaurant Farm Fresh Meals Deck: 50 Delicious Recipes for Every Season by Moosewood Collective $14.99    How cute and efficient are these decks of recipe cards!? Organized by season, these cards are great to take with you to Farmer’s Markets (!!!! almost that time of year!!!!) to figure out how to cook the produce you’re thinking of buying! This past fall I finally had the pleasure of eating at the legendary Moosewood Restaurant in Ithaca, NY and can attest that the food they serve is every bit as good as all of the recipes I have tried over the years. Three cheers for Moosewood!

How It All Vegan!: Irresistible Recipes for an Animal-Free Diet by Tanya Barnard, Sarah Kramer $22.95   I absolutely had to include this (tenth anniversary, updated edition!) book, and not just because it’s so cute and retro-kitschy, though that helps.  This was one of the first vegan cookbooks I ever saw or used. I recall gathering in the kitchen of a large group of friends, everyone all tattooed and sporting home haircuts, the air smelling like nutritional yeast and garlic, cooking up recipes from this book and then sharing them together. Sarah Kramer has since gone on to remain very active in vegan cooking and various art projects, and has multiple cookbooks, and even (so neat!) a calendar!  But this should be a staple in any and every kitchen. You can likely find the older edition used for very little money. If you asked me what book you should get to start your vegan cookbook collection, THIS would be my first choice.

That’s Why We Don’t Eat Animals: A Book About Vegans, Vegetarians, and All Living Things by Ruby Roth $16.95    This is a beautifully illustrated childrens book depicts the cruelty of factory farming in an approachable, kid-friendly way without sugar coating the truth. While the book does mention things like battery cages and slaughter, it is done to inform, not frighten. This book also brings in topics like environmentalism, and animals used for clothes or entertainment. Ending positively, it makes a veg child feel good about allowing animals to live happy and free!

This Crazy Vegan Life: A Prescription for an Endangered Species by Christina Pirello $18.95   Christina is a respected vegan cookbook author, as well as host of her own cooking show on PBS (lucky duck!). This book is a narrative about vegan fitness, lifestyle and world-view, containing personal anecdotes from Christina’s life and broader vegan insights and cultural implications. It also has a lot of nutritional information, including a 28-day fitness plan, and 100 healthy recipes.

What are some of your favorite books and cookbooks?


20 thoughts on “Nerd! (We love BOOKS)

  1. my favorite book that i’ve read recently is Little Bee by Chris Cleave. right now i’m reading Mutant Message by Marlo Morgan, but i’ve only just begun so i can’t say either way yet.
    i never buy cookbooks, i just pick and choose ones i like from the internet and cool blogs like yours, or check them out from the library, and i am compiling a little folder with the ones i have made and loved, with my modifications noted.
    that recipe deck is neat!

    • Are you nice and organized? I have random recipes on scraps of paper and torn from magazines, and they always turn up silly places. I keep saying I’m going to sit down and organize them but… that uh, hasn’t happened yet. I am going to look into the books you mentioned right now!

  2. A girl after my own heart!!!!!

    I love, love, LOVE.. to read and I too read cookbooks from cover to cover……
    books that I am playing with now are
    1) Clean food (Terry walters) I love the concept of eating for a season…
    2) The kind diet (Alicia silverstone) got me to make the jump from Vegie to Vegan.
    3) Vegan soul Kitchen (Bryant Terry) lets face it… the food is good… and he is YUMMY!
    4) Cool waters (Brian Preston-Campbell) trying to cut sugar.. well juice.. and this is a great healthy way to flavor water.
    am loving your blog… thanks for inviting me from facebook… ingenious marketting!

    • Cindy, THANK YOU for such wonderful and thoughtful comments! It means the world to me!

      I am very well-versed in the first 2 books you mentioned – I have and absolutely ADORE both. Clean food is full of simple, seasonal ideas and flavor combinations. And the Kind Diet is stunning from it’s design to it’s friendly and approachable narrative. I’d love to talk further about either of them with you! The vegan soul kitchen is intriguing, and something I want to pick up soon. The last one you mention sounds VERY interesting. Hm… maybe a future blog topic? I’ve had a craving for cucumber-mint water since seeing it in a magazine. Be sure to share your great treasures here with us!

  3. hey, Jaime! actually, i just got organized… i have a binder that i keep my recipes in, each one is in a nifty little plastic sleeve, that way when i wanna use it i can take it out, keep it on the counter, and get gooey ingredients all over it, then just wipe it down (cuz it’s in that nifty plastic sleeve, see?)!
    i would like to read alicia’s new book (kind diet), but i will wait til the library gets it.

    • Hey, good idea. I long ago gave up on the idea of keeping my recipes or cookbooks pristine. Everything has spots of flour or oil on it 🙂 “Lived in”, I like to call it.

      Wait til you see Alicia’s book! Its so beautiful and inspiring. I hope your library gets it very soon!

  4. Quick-Fix Vegetarian by Robin Roberston pretty much saved my life when I transitioned from vegetarian to vegan about three years ago.

    Thanks for the suggestions–I’m especially psyched about the vegan diner food recipes (and someday in the future the children’s book)! I love How it All Vegan… banana pancakes, fruit muffins, black bean burgers, shepherd’s pie, yum, yum!

  5. i just ordered Edo Satirical Verse Anthologies by R.H. Blyth from Amazon and i LOOOOOVE it!!!! he’s my new fav. and it was pretty exciting to find any book of his online that wasn’t $400. (i paid $20!) p.s. i think i’ll be in the LV on saturday – are you busy???

    • Ugh, I AM busy on Saturday though not necessarily in the evening or nighttime. When will you be around?

      And I am not familiar with that author, although I trust your judgement and am now intrigued. Plus, what a bargain!

  6. Pingback: Go » Blog Archive » Save the kales!

  7. I also love the cupcakes take over the world recipe book, and I also have a copy of the why we don’t eat animals book. My kids liked it a lot & I found it was an easy way to introduce the ‘why we don’t eat friends’ to them at their 4 & 6 ages. 🙂

    • Heather, thats so cool! The fact that childrens books like that exist make my weirdo hormones flare up and then I want to be a mom NOW. But I guess I’ll just stick to giving it as a gift. But I’m glad you love it! Thanks for saying hello 🙂

  8. i loved this entry! im enjoying the new everyday food cookbook (the first one was amazing!) and im so excited that chelsea handlers new book came out yesterday! i always take a look at the new craft books we get in, too. does your b&n have the ‘for crafters’ ec up? its mostly books on starting your own crafting business. very helpful! those cookbooks by sarah and tanya are adorable…did you see the vegan a go-go one? i got it as a gift for a friend and she loved it.

    • Tanya, I’m not at the bookstore now but finally went in today (I’m using the wifi there right now) – Im excited to pick up the new VegNews, BUST, etc… and browse the books as well. Those craft books sound right up your alley – how neat!

      Sarah Kramer is also the cutest ever. The first time I ever saw her stuff I felt like I “belonged” (awww) and had a retro-tattooed-vegan soul sister somewhere else in the world. When you’re 17 in high school, that’s huge. Maybe we can combine out powers and see if she’ll hang out with us?

  9. Wow! Thanks for the super kind mention of my book here. I just found your blog and am bookmarking it so that I can keep up.

    That fortune cookie post is absolutely beautiful, by the way. Definitely the best fortune cookie ever. I thought my worst fortune ever was when I the cookie was empty. After the surprise, I decided maybe it was for the best since it gave me endless opportunities that way. 🙂

    • Tami, WOW! Imagine, running in to you here… 🙂

      Your book is incredible, and totally filled a niche that I for one can stand behind and greatly appreciate. Congrats on the book deal, too. Livin’ the dream!!

      I also appreciate your empty-cookie optimism. Bring that happy disposition around any time you’d like. It means so much to hear from you, thanks soo much!

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