July 5, 2013 |
It was one of the first pasta dinners I made after my sister and brother-in-law announced they were going vegan. We were in their kitchen in southern Maine, where I spent last year helping them with their homestead, and I was making a sauce from the best of the early summer produce, right from the huge garden outside. It was based on the classic French side dish of braised lettuce and peas, but I turned it Italian by tossing it with curly pasta and a touch of mint. As it neared readiness, I needed to make ask them to make one - OK, two - little exceptions to their diet in service of the dish and its integrity.
June 28, 2013
IT'S NO surprise to find a veggie burger on a diner menu. Nowadays, anyplace with burgers that lacks a veggie option is self-consciously retro. Surprising to some, though, is that the same thing is now happening with pizza. To celebrate Vegan Pizza Day - a national event taking place this Saturday - let's survey the local scene. Just a few years ago, vegan pizza in Philly was as scarce as a medium-rare unicorn, but today you can find it at a dozen places, as more businesses apply the veggie-burger principle (don't give a party of people that includes a vegan a reason to go elsewhere)
June 24, 2013 |
I'm a Northeastern boy - born in Philadelphia, raised in New Jersey, attending college in Connecticut - but my blood flows from the Midwest. My dad is from small-town Indiana, my mom from rural Wisconsin, meaning that in matters of food, our tastes are relatively simple: meat and butter, toss in some cheese for good measure. Pop-up pizza casserole, seven-layer Jell-O, pigs in a blanket, baked mac and cheese, meat loaf, and mashed potatoes - these are among the foods on which I was happily raised, eating my way through childhood and adolescence.
May 31, 2013
MARK BITTMAN's new book, VB6, includes a 28-day, meal-by-meal plan to keep daily food choices fun, varied and nutritious. Here are some options, referencing recipes in the book: BREAKFAST: Hot oatmeal; blueberry smoothie; homemade cold cereal with almond milk; or Scrambled Tofu With Tomatoes. LUNCH: Chickpea Ratatouille and a salad; Creamed Mushrooms on Toast (see recipe); Now-or-Later Vegan Burgers on Daily Salad Bowl; or Vegetable Miso Soup With Squash and Tofu. SNACK: Homemade Tortilla Crisps; Spiked Guacamole; Kale Chips Lacinato; Beet Candy; Tofu Jerky.
May 30, 2013
_ 1995: Publishes Leafy Greens: An A-to-Z Guide to 30 Types of Greens Plus More Than 120 Delicious Recipes (MacMillan). _ 1997: Debuts his New York Times column "The Minimalist," promoting simple, easy cooking with high-quality ingredients. _ 1998: Publishes How to Cook Everything: Simple Recipes for Great Food (Wiley & Sons). _ 2005: Debut of PBS series "Bittman Takes on America's Chefs. " _ 2007: Publishes How to Cook Everything Vegetarian (Wiley & Sons), which wins International Association of Culinary Professionals/Julia Child award.
May 3, 2013
IF I SAY "vegan rock star," Chrissie Hynde or Moby or Jason Mraz might come to mind. You wouldn't immediately think of T. Colin Campbell, 79, professor emeritus of nutritional biochemistry at Cornell University. But Campbell's half-century of research in nutrition, hundreds of peer-reviewed papers and a key role in the world's most comprehensive study of health and nutrition, the "China Study," have surely made him a rock star in the plant-eating world. He summarized that groundbreaking study (which the New York Times called "the Grand Prix of epidemiology")
April 19, 2013
TV COOKING shows, am I right? They're everywhere, with red meat literal and metaphoric. Front-burner flare-ups and meltdowns, knife-edge competitions, violent outbursts, fireworks, car chases - you name it. Their "green" counterparts tend to be nonviolent, collaborative, animal-free, veggie-rich and . . . well, not exactly everywhere. And they don't have car chases. Which, on second thought, neither do the mainstream ones. Point is, however they might have languished in obscurity, plant-based shows are stepping into the limelight.
April 5, 2013
BETTER LATE than never, spring has sprung (or at least it's starting to). Let's turn off the furnace, open the door, put the top down and go explore the world around us. If we get hungry, no prob - there are plentiful plant-based offerings all around Philly. In fact, as it warms up, we'll take a quick spin around Philly and through the suburbs, touching base with some of our less Center City-centric friends to see what's up in their neighborhoods. Starting in Jersey (sun rises in the east, right?
March 22, 2013
IF ROB KATZ tells you that his mother is "a creative genius," that "everything she touches turns to magic," you might chalk it up to his being a devoted son. But when his mother is Bobbi Katz, creator of Bobbi's Best Hummus, you realize that he's just sharing facts. The company's line of hummus and vegan-friendly spreads is exceptionally good, and I'm not just saying that because I was swayed by the subliminal message on the containers: "Your Favorite Hummus. " Or am I? What else, other than the incredible taste, explains the loyalty this product inspires?
February 21, 2013 |
"OH, MY GOD, I couldn't live without cheese!" Ever heard those words, or maybe uttered them yourself? I sure have. Back when I, a longtime vegetarian, decided to go vegan, the prospect of life without cheese yawned as a desolate, ascetic slog of eternity without such rich, gooey gustatory pleasure. What a martyr to cross the line into that bleak, barren world! A couple of dairy-free months later, I was already puzzling at such grandiosity. Cheese? Really? I didn't know then how casomorphins, a dairy component that's concentrated in cheese, act as opioids - that is, they confer a mild but habit-forming euphoria.