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Eating From the Ground Up

This delightful cookbook by Alana Chernila is filling an important void in my cookbook library. I have cookbooks with vegetable recipes, cookbooks that use vegetables in interesting ways (dessert, spagetti, breads, etc), but had given away my other cookbook that solely highlights the wonders of vegetables (The Broad Fork by Hugh Atchinson). It went to a good cause, I gave it to my sister and her boyfriend (who is a farmer) to give them some fun ideas about different things to cook.

http://images.randomhouse.com/cover/9780451494993?width=450&alt=no_cover_b4b.gif

Alana introduces the book by telling a wonderful story about how to eat radishes. In the anecdote she realizes she doesn’t know how to best showcase/eat a radish and since she was working at a farmer’s market stand at the time (which had a LOT of radishes), perhaps that wasn’t conducive to selling. In a humorous drive that is present throughout the book, she goes home, plays with different preparations, and then has an answer for the next week when they inquire. Bonus: Her suggestion sounds good. Considering radishes are a little bit of a mystery vegetable for me as well, I was hooked.

Recipes in this book takes a look at recipes from “barely recipes”, to more involved preparations for your vegetables. A quick browse had me targeting a few for more in depth reading.  This is a welcome addition despite some recipes that are really simple and more like throwing together a bunch of uncooked vegetables, which seems rather pedestrian for a cookbook. I also enjoyed that she took some liberties with the recipes. It isn’t just recipes using vegetables and spices, it also incorporates bread and crust and meat sometimes. Keeps the variety fun since meals don’t need to follow the strict equation entree+2 sides+ bread.

The pictures are delightful and clear and make it seem achievable. Which is wonderful when branching out.

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.

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