Don't worry, we didn't kick the girls, Bug (4) and Goose (3) out of the house. We still have four members to our family. But when I got Kathy Hester's yummy new cookbook in the mail, Vegan Slow Cooking for Two, I made a realization that I probably should've made a long time ago. Cooking for two is kind of awesome when you're cooking for a blended-eater family. I'm mostly vegetarian (experimenting with pescatarianism due to health issues), my husband Mr. Meaty is an omnivore and our girls are undecided.
Bug I'd say is leaning toward pescatarianism with a hot dogs exception. Goose sides with Daddy in our culinary family split and is a pretty big meat-eater except for, you guessed it, hot dogs. So Kathy, who is a great blogging friend, and a master of vegan slow cooking, inspired a new cooking trend in our house. Cooking for two allows the adults to have a big enough portion to eat if they like it and a small enough portion for the kids to eat, or at least try. It usually ends up as the perfect amount for all of us. And, if one of the kids (or even sometimes one of the adults) isn't a fan of something, we don't have to worry about a ton of leftovers or wasted food. It's awesome. So, thank you Kathy.
About Vegan Slow Cooking for Two
Kathy Hester is the author of the incredible vegan slow cooking blog, HealthySlowCooking.com. Her latest cookbook Vegan Slow Cooking for Two is designed to be a guide for cooking for two people, or two portions for one person, all within a 1 1/2 quart/liter slow cooker. Which, as I said, at first blush doesn't seem perfect for my family. But it's been really great for our blended-eater family to be able to experiment with new dishes without having to worry about having too many leftovers for family members that don't care for the dish.
How do the recipes fare?
Overall, I highly recommend the cookbook. It has some delicious and original recipes and a little bit of something for everyone. It's nice not to have to convert any meat ingredients, too. That's always a refreshing part of vegan/vegetarian cookbooks.
We've made four recipes from Kathy's cookbook thus far. The biggest hit was the Corn and Basil Risotto. It was amazing. Mr. Meaty and I gobbled it up and the girls ate small tasting portions. Bug, who inexplicably hates corn, unsurprisingly didn't care for it. Goose thought it was fine. But as I said Mr. Meaty and I loved it so we happily scarfed down what the girls didn't eat.
We also made Chocolate Pumpkin Brownie Breakfast Quinoa, which the kids strangely didn't care for even though it tasted like brownie batter. I loved it and it got even better the next day when it thickened up a bit. Mr. Meaty said it was too chocolatey, but we didn't expect him to like it at all because he doesn't like pumpkin. We added frozen banana slices to the kids' servings and they gobbled up those and about half of their quinoa along with them. I got to enjoy all of the leftovers and was really bummed when I ran out. It was a great breakfast and I'll definitely make it again. I might also try to concoct a Vanilla-Pumpkin version. Yum.
The Potato Cauliflower Curry (Aloo Gobi) was good, but I screwed up a bit on the preparation. I was lazy and whirled the cauliflower through the food processor to chop it instead of chopping it by hand. The result was that the cauliflower was too small and turned a bit mushy. The flavor was great though. I normally love Aloo Gobi made on the stovetop, so I might try the recipe again stovetop style and with properly chopped cauliflower.
We didn't care for a fourth recipe, Indian Mashed Veggie Sandwiches (Pav Bhaji). But I should've known better than to try this recipe as written. I never like cinnamon in savory dishes and this is one of those dishes. So, that was more my issue than the cookbook's. If you like savory cinnamon dishes, I'm sure it'd be a winner. Mr. Meaty didn't like it either and we didn't end up offering any to the kids because we assumed they'd think it was "too spicy" as they believe of most recipes with any herbs/spices at all.
More information about Kathy Hester
I've been lucky enough to get a copy of each of Kathy Hester's yummy cookbooks, including The Vegan Slow Cooker. From that cookbook I made Slow Cooker Smoked Tofu and Smoked Tofu and Stars Soup and was inspired to make Home Smoked Chipotle Peppers. All amazing recipes that I've made again since the first time.
Kathy also released The Great Vegan Bean Book earlier this year. I've not had a chance to cook anything from that one yet, but have flipped through and marked several to try. The recipes look fantastic, as always.
Healthy Slow Cooking Kathy Hester's contact info:
- website http://healthyslowcooking.com/
- email [email protected]
- facebook veganslowcooker
- twitter @geekypoet
- pinterest kathy_hester
Note: While Kathy Hester's publisher, Fair Winds Press, provided me with a promotional copy of the cookbook for the review, my opinions are 100% my own. See my full disclosure policy here. If you have any additional questions – feel free to send an email to [email protected].