Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Salad Samaurai by Terry Hope Romero

We all know that Terry Hope Romero is one of the most accomplished cookbook writers and vegan chefs in the industry. But, I have to say that her new cookbook, Salad Samurai, could quite possibly be her best. Her definition of salad really rides on the edge as she creates beautiful, vegetable-based meals, some of which are traditional salads and others that look more like fancy tapas.

She starts off with a manifesto asking people to stop making salads that suck! She states that the real salads she craves are genuine, hearty meals. These are one-bowl wonders. The book is called Salad Samurai because you are the salad samurai, the master of your salad-making domain. Of course, as we know with her previous books, she continues to amaze us with her witty banter.

Perhaps most impressive is the layout and design of this book. Each recipe has its own page and most recipes have a beautiful colorful picture of the dish. These aren't ordinary pictures either -- these are professionally plated dishes with great lighting highlighting the ingredients. For just $12 on Amazon, I'd challenge you to find a nicer recipe book.

Out of this book, I tried two recipes.  The first was the Grilled Kale Salad with Spicy Lentils, which wasn't really a salad. Instead it really turned out to be an incredible gourmet vegan meal. I never really thought to grill kale before, but it turns out wonderfully! Seared kale and scallions marinated in a coconut milk and lime juice dressing served with tomatoes, onions, and almonds in a similar dressing with spicy sriracha and lentils. The mix is akin to a plate at an upscale restaurant.This one was a winner.

The second recipe I tried was as good or maybe slightly better. The Polish Summer Soba Salad mixes crunchy cucumbers accented by fresh dill and warm noodles with warm roasted beets, crunchy walnuts, beans, and scallions in a deliciously fresh dill dressing. If you want a dish that will impress your friends, this is it. And it is super easy to make. Roast the beets, boil the noodles, and chop the rest and you are done! And it is so beautiful.

I'm looking forward to making many more recipes out of this book. For now, you need to get on Amazon and buy it before they sell out. This book is worth every penny. Find it here.

Full Disclosure: Although the cookbook was provided to me for free to review, that in no way influenced my veracious opinion.

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