In this latest masterpiece of creativity (she just keeps getting better and better), Robin Robertson isn't resting on her laurels just putting out recipes. Nope, she provides a wealth of ideas and suggestions, on everything from saving money and time, stocking your kitchen, shopping and preparation tips, making your own convenience foods (plus meat analogs), and even breaks down many store-bought products in a cost comparison chart.
This isn't to minimize the high value of her recipes. Even the seasoned vegan cook will learn some new strategies from this book. Envision a rich "Great Northern Apple Cake" using Northern Beans (< $.50 per serving), put your money down on a "Pepperoni-Mushroom Pizza" (< $1.00 per serving, AND with a "Great Stick Pepperoni" recipe), then invest in the "Tropic of Tempeh" (< $2.00 per serving), and finally, check out the CASHew flow of "Blushing Alfredo Fettuccine" (<$1.50 per serving).
One can't add it up any other way, and there's no accounting for missing this great addition to vegan cuisine. With "Vegan on the Cheap," Robin has provided a one-stop shopping experience of resources (offline and online), methods, basics, the stats, and the recipes for anyone wishing to maximize the use of their time and money. However, she isn't a miser (!) and occasionally offers ideas for "splurging" once in awhile, eating at restaurants, and comprehensively noting what you shouldn't "skimp on."
Too often the phrase "on the cheap" is misinterpreted with negative connotations, when in fact, the actual definition is "at minimum expense." Given the current state of our economy, this book's solid approach to inexpensive vegan food is not only a blessing to those who are on hard times, but also for the animals, your health, and our environment. A truly innovative guide that desires a place in your cookbook portfolio.
(makes about 3 cups, < 50 cents per serving)
"...As a bonus to being cheaper than regular guacamole, this version also contains less fat and more protein. ."
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 cups frozen peas, thawed
1 cup cooked or canned white beans, drained and rinsed
1 (4-ounce) can diced green chiles, drained
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons minced red onion
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
Salt and black pepper
1. In a food processor or blender, combine the garlic, peas, beans, and chilesand blend until smooth.
2. Add the lime juice, oil, and cumin and blend until well combined. Use a rubber spatula to scrape the mixture into a medium bowl. Stir in the onion and cilantro. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
3. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to allow flavors to blend.
This tastes best if used on the same day that it is made. Use it as a dip for chips or cut vegetables or any way you would use regular guacamole.
[Note: this recipe is © 2010, by Robin Robertson.
[Visit Robin's blog & website for more recipes, info, and purchasing her books (disclaimer: I designed Robin's global vegan kitchen website):