The Modern Vegetarian Kitchen

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9780060392956: The Modern Vegetarian Kitchen

Peter Berley's mission is to show how the simple act of cooking food can enliven your senses and nourish your life--from going to the farmer's market and outfitting your kitchen with the simplest, most useful tools to learning techniques and sharing meals with friends and family. The much-admired former chef of Angelica Kitchen, one of New York City's finest restaurants, Berley takes you through the seasons, with more than two hundred sumptuous recipes that feature each ingredient at its peak, including:

  • Summer Corn and Vegetable Chowder

  • Hearts of Romaine with Creamy Miso Dressing

  • Baby Artichokes in White Wine, Lemon, and Herbs

  • Fresh Asian-Style Whole-Wheat Noodles in Dashi

  • Wild Mushroom Stew with Crispy Pan-Fried Tofu

  • Wintry Root-Vegetable Risotto with Porcini Mushrooms

  • Authentic Country French Sourdough Bread

  • Coconut Cream Tart

A cooking teacher for many years, Berley has kept the needs of his students continually in mind in this book. The recipes are written to feature the basic techniques and background information needed to create wonderful meals with fresh vegetables, fruits, and grains. He truly inspires both novice and experienced cooks to understand what they are doing and why, to learn to work with the ingredients, and to apply their skills creatively. This wonderful book brings vegetarian cuisine to a new level.

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Review:

Peter Berley was introduced to macrobiotic cooking by a Japanese acupuncturist during the 1970s. His appreciation for this new and, at that time, slightly radical way of eating and cooking led to a career as a vegetarian chef. Berley started simply, hosting small dinner clubs; by 1992, he was executive chef at a strictly vegan restaurant in New York, Angelica Kitchen. In his first cookbook, Berley shares unique color and flavor combinations to demonstrate both the visual and toothsome possibilities of creative vegetarian cooking. But at the heart are the staples. A chapter on salads lists dishes by season--to encourage the reader to take advantage of seasonal fruits and vegetables. An assortment of bean recipes provides imaginative uses for chickpeas, white beans, black beans, and lentils. Bread recipes are complemented by a variety of tapenades, pestos, and herbed oils. Desserts include the expected pumpkin pie but also temptations such as Pear-Cranberry Crisp and Chocolate Mousse. Through it all, Berley proves that eating the vegetarian way can offer as much in cuisine as it does in health. --Teresa Simanton

About the Author:

Peter Berley is a chef, caterer, and cooking teacher who holds classes at the Culinary Loft, the Natural Gourmet Institute for Food and Health, and the EarthPledge Foundation in New York City.The former executive chef of world-renowned Angelica Kitchen restaurant in New York City, he is one of the founding members of Chef Collaborative, a group of chefs who work to maintain traditions in cuisine and promote sustainable methods of food cultivation and production. He lives with his wife and two daughters in Dobbs Ferry, New York.

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