This fall’s going to be bananas! And also pies! Because it’s cookbook season, everyone! And I’m more excited about baking and cooking this year than any other because of the following five cookbooks that I suspect I will not be able to live without once they’re in my hot little mitts. All are available for sale or pre-order through Amazon.com and B&N.com.
Gluten-Free and Vegan Holidays: Celebrating the Year with Simple, Satisfying Recipes and Menus, Jennifer Katzinger. Available now.
I’ve been vegan for four years and gluten-free for two, and holy guacamole, have the last two holiday seasons been one trap door after the other. Everywhere I go, people are making GODDAMN SUGAR COOKIES in the shape of little men, with smug smiles that I know mean they’re just waiting for me to take a sickening bite of their legs. Not this year. This year I’m making my own sugar cookies and they will be made of almond flour and they will be modest and sincere and not try to kill anyone except that kid with the nut allergies. But enough about me, back to this book. This book is more than recipes for the cold weather holidays; Katzinger’s included recipes for all the biggies, including Halloween, Hanukkah, and St. Patty’s. Who else desperately misses Irish soda bread? Actually I could say that about dozens of holiday foods — who misses Challah bread? Shortbread, stuffed cabbage, etc.–and this book covers all of those, plus plenty more “man, I really miss that [holiday food]!” dishes.
Quick-Fix Vegan: Health, Homestyle Meals in 30 Minutes or Less, Robin Robertson. Available Now.
Two things: 1. Robin Robertson. 2. Quick: all recipes can be prepared in 30 minutes. I love to be fancy sometimes, but honestly most of the time I eat salad or apples with peanut butter or Amy’s frozen burritos, when I’d so rather be eating something homemade. This book covers more than soup and salad recipes — it’s got tips for little things you can do when you have time so that when you’re crunched the cooking moves faster, lists of the kinds of foods you want to have on hand so you can make things in a hurry, and lots of real recipes you would want to make whether quick or not so quick, like pumpkin hummus, mushroom-artichoke risotto, and chocolate cheesecake squares.
Vegan Pie in the Sky, Isa Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero. Available October 25.
Piiiies! I can’t count the number of times I’ve thought, “Gosh, I should really have a pie party!” Now, no excuses! In the style of Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World and Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar Isa and Terry bring their simple and straightforward recipes to an eight-inch round. Dessert pies only, 75 in all. And you can test out a couple of recipes this weekend before the book publishes next-next Tuesday; Isa posted the recipe for Old Fashioned Chocolate Pudding Pie (and three other beautiful sample recipes) at the Post Punk Kitchen, and it looks just like what my mom used to make with that chocolate jell-O pie mix. I miss that stuff terribly. Thanks for keeping my childhood alive!
Candle 79 Cookbook: Modern Vegan Classics from New York’s Premier Sustainable Restaurant, Joy Pierson, Angel Ramos, and Jorge Pineda. Available November 1.
HOLY YES. Who doesn’t want to cook like the geniuses at Candle FREAKING 79?? Since I devoured my copy of The Candle Cafe Cookbook, I’m hungry for another challenge from my favorite, favorite restaurants. Listen to this and try to tell me these don’t sound 3,000 percent delicious — Heirloom Tomato-Avocado Tartare, Jerusalem Artichoke Soup with Crispy Sage Leaves, Stuffed Avocado with Quinoa Pilaf and Chipotle-Avocado Dressing, Stuffed Ravioli with Wild Mushrooms and Cashew Cheese…and that’s just a handful of the many delightful recipes many of us Candle lovers may be making at home next month. I’m cooking and it’s going to be fancy! Who’s coming over? Everyone!
The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Gluten-free Vegan Cooking, Julieanna Hever and Beverly Lynn Bennett. Available December 6.
Idiots! That’s me! I’m not above a good Idiot’s Guide — I like them. Particularly because every time I’ve excluded something new from my diet I’ve had to re-learn to cook, so I’m ready for a book that gets down to the basics. That is to say that this is one of the first books that’s gotten down to the basics on this very specific topic. Plus one of the authors is a really attractive dietician. What more do you need to know!