Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Healthy Hedonist Holidays

I've got an awful lot of cookbooks... one entire bookshelf that's already overflowing, not to mention two or three drawers in the kitchen that are also stuffed full of cookbooks. I'm a cookbook person, I guess.

Of all of those, two of my all-time most favorites are Voluptuous Vegan and The Healthy Hedonist, both by Myra Kornfeld. I got Voluptuous Vegan as a gift from my cousin Eliza, way back when I was still reasonably new to cooking vegan food. I found it intimidating and shoved it in the cupboards. Thank god I rediscovered it eventually, because now I have made and LOVED so many recipes from that book... it's just crazy. In fact, VV is the most frequently sited cookbook on my blog. The Healthy Hedonist came along later and includes some recipes featuring fish and chicken and eggs... but also plenty of delicious vegan recipes or vegan options in non-vegan recipes. So, when I saw "The Healthy Hedonist Holidays" on sale a while back, I bought it right away. However, I didn't make anything from it for quite a while. HHH is, again, not a vegan book, but features some vegan recipes (fewer than Healthy Hedonist). The book is laid out by holiday and features a large menu with everything from appetizers to entrees to desserts for each holiday. I finally broke it open last Christmas and made a polenta casserole that was super delicious. So, in an effort to use the nice cookbooks I already have, I recently decided to sift through HHH and see what I could pull together for some regular weeknight dinners.

The first thing I picked was the Tofu Leek Tart with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Fresh Herbs. As you can see, I decided to skip the crust... mostly just to keep the calories down. I didn't quite crumble the tofus enough for the dish to hold together perfectly, but the flavor was really great. The filling had tofu, leeks (lots!), garlic, miso, tarragon & basil, sun-dried tomatoes, and a few other things... a great combination of ingredients I generally have on hand (except the fresh tarragon, which required a special trip to the store!).

A few nights later I made the Golden Squash and Chickpea Soup with Roasted Chickpea Nuts... which was a huge success! It's actually a pretty simple recipe, but somehow the flavors came together in an elegant way. The soup is rich and velvety, and the roasted chickpeas are just about the yummiest thing EVER. Mr. Vegan Eats & Treats was pretty freaked out by how delicious those chickpeas were. He suggested it should now be officially against the law to ever eat chickpeas in any other format... but I'm not ready for that sort of draconian measure against my favorite bean. I'll definitely make this soup again - it was wonderful!

That's all for now, but I plan to continue exploring HHH and seeing what other recipe treasures I can find in there!


  1. I'm also a HUGE Myra Kornfeld fan so I'll be watching your progress with interest. I haven't made much from HHH but I've made the similar tofu leek pie from VV loads and adore it.

  2. That soup looks fab. I do approve of your reluctance to put a chickpea law into effect in your house. They are too good to be contained.

  3. I love the Voluptuous Vegan, too! I have never roasted chickpeas but I love them in any form!

  4. Okay. This is bad. I'm a cookbookaddict and these three cookbooks weren't on my wishlist. Yet. Now I've seen them, I must have them.

    Thanks for sharing ;)

  5. Yummy! I'm going to check my library for those books, they sound really good.

  6. I don't have either of those books, but will definitely keep an eye out. Both dishes sound delicious!


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