Beginner at Cooking Period - Looking for Me-Friendly Vegan Cookbook
Hey you all. I decided to start phasing animal products out of my diet about a month ago, and think I'm going to be an ovo-vegetarian, since I'm still not sure if I feel comfortable getting B12 through supplements, but I'm looking for vegan cookbooks, so I can eat my eggs separate so if I later change my mind and decide to become vegan, I'll already be experienced in cooking that way.
Now, my problem is.. I'm super slow with cooking. Seriously. Even at chopping, which I'm trying to get better at. And I hate recipes with too many ingredients. I really need simple at this point, because I'll be cooking for myself for the first time, PERIOD. I have little experience cooking my own meals on a daily basis. But I have no choice if I really want to be serious about being veg.
So I'm looking for a cookbook with simpler recipes with fewer ingredients, and also ones that are easy to portion for just one person (not for like, 4 person recipes calling for one can of something, etc., that are difficult to make for 1 person).
I think I'd love any recipe with only five ingredients (not counting spices) max, but it could be more if they're simple. Not too many exotic ingredients, since I don't have a car so only the nearby supermarket is available. And since I'm a beginner, pictures are pretty important to me, and I don't need a cookbook with many sweets, but rather, meals.
Here are some of the cookbooks I've come across in my research, but I know many of these are NOT simple, so it's hard to widdle it down for me. I don't need all-purpose even for fancy occasions, I need simple. :)
Veganomicon (might be complicated?)
How It All Vegan!
The Garden of Vegan
Vegan Cooking for One (heard some of it's kind of unhealthy?)
La Dolce Vegan
To help tailor it a bit more, the one thing I want to avoid most is cookbooks with a lot of soy. I try to make a lot of my diet vegetables, so a cookbook that has some veggie-friendly recipes would be nice. I don't eat much soy, except for occasional tofu, and I do try to limit my consumption of grains and legumes, though I DO have some, and I do eat fruit, but not a huge amount since I have bad teeth. But I want a lot of focus on veggies foremost. I follow the whole foods philosophy most, so anything with whole foods would be nice too, instead of more processed foods.
So that is me in a nutshell. There is obviously no perfect cookbook for everyone, and the most crucial factor for me is simple and easy to make for one person. But if anyone knows of cookbooks like that that also happen to follow anything I wrote in the above paragraph, that would be nice too.
Sorry for the mini-rant. I'm done now. :P
I can relate to being a single cook and and a slow one. I don't mind cooking big meals because I like the leftovers to bring to work for lunch the next day.
I have Vegan Cooking for One and it's pretty good and I'm don't find it all that unhealthy.
If you want a good cookbook that has a lot of simple recipes, look into Robin Robertson's book 1000 Vegan Recipes. It's an awesome book and has a lot of recipes of all kinds and she doesn't focus on tofu (although there are good tofu recipes there). They are relatively easy to make as well.
It's the one book I recommend to new vegans and cooks.
All the other books you mentioned are also good as well.
Check out our thread on "The Supermarket Vegan" ...those recipes contain easy to find ingredients and aren't to hard to make.
Another Robin Robertson book she wrote sometime ago and that I have is called "Quick Fix Vegetarian" and it promises meals in 30 minutes or less. Very simple quick and easy to make recipes.
Tweety- You always have so many helpful suggestions for the masses!
VG23- The only thoughts I have in addition to what Tweety has already said is to go to the bookstore and compare the books you're interested in side-by-side. Also, you may also want to consider Appetite For Reduction. It's hot off the press, and already getting much acclaim. Soy-free recipes are identified as such (as are gluten-free, recipes that can be made in 30 minutes or less, and recipes that allow for some downtime). The recipes are simple and sure to please.
I often end up cooking for one also. Personally, I'd rather halve a larger recipe or, more often than not, make a full-size standard recipe, have some for lunch the next day, and either share with others (co-workers, extended family), or, if possible, freeze some for lunch a different day when I haven't had time to cook.
Good luck with whatever you decide!
I'm another one for Supermarket Vegan. It doesn't call for weird ingredients, it relys more on produce, rice and pasta and doesn't call for a million ingredients.
Glad to hear that! Would love to hear some recipe reviews here on this forum if you cook something. You can review it on this thread, since I don't think Quick Fix has a thread of it's own: http://vegweb.com/index.php?topic=33604.0