Second Reformed Church

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Review: "Vegan Holiday Cooking from Candle Cafe"

I have gotten to the point with vegan cookbooks that I thought there was nothing new or better than the ones I had – but I was blown away by Vegan Holiday Cooking from Candle Café.

The recipes are divided by celebration:  the big game, lunar New Year, Valentine’s Day. Passover Seder, Easter brunch, Cinco de Mayo fiesta, 4th of July backyard barbecue, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Eve.  The book ends with a resource guide for those who can’t find some ingredients locally – I have not found that to be a problem.

I have made three of the recipes so far: 

“Gefilte Tofu” (50).  To look at the recipe, I thought, “This is never going to work.”  However, it tasted very much like Gefilte Fish.  I was very happy with it and served it at a family gathering on whole grain crackers.

“Swiss Chard & Chickpeas” (53).  I love chickpeas, so I thought I would give this recipe a try.  It was so creamy and satisfyingly flavorful; I ended up eating more than a serving at a time.  A simple combination of chard, chickpeas onions and garlic – wonderful!  This recipe is going to be a regular in my repertoire.

“Pumpkin Seed Crusted Tempeh” (119).  I decided to go against the suggested sides and make this dish and serve it over a bed of mixed greens.  After pouching the tempeh, the pieces are dredged in egg-replacer and water and then coasted with the pumpkin seed crust.  Since I do not use oil, I pan fried them in vegetable broth, which meant they were not as crusty, but still delicious – the tempeh became creamy with a slight pumpkin taste around it. 

I look forward to making more recipes from this cookbook.  If the three I have made thus far are as good, this will be one of my favorite cook books.

Highly recommended.

[This review appears on and on my blog.  I received this book for free from WaterbrookMultnoma Publishing Group in exchange for an honest review.]

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