If you’ve ever read through our issues, you may have liked our book reviews that we’ve run since almost the beginning of our work. We’re now doing book reviews on the blog so that we can share more books at a faster pace, and we’re so happy that V is For Vegan is kicking off this fun new series. Read on for our thoughts about this vibrant cookbook.
The thing that grabbed us immediately when we flipped through the pages of V is For Vegan was the design of the book. If you’re at all into realistic textures, bright bold colors, and monospace typefaces (as we certainly are), you’ll love the layout and aesthetic of this book. Like the author’s voice, it is loud, colorful and exciting. In the introduction, Kerstin writes that this book is a response to the mainstream view of veganism, which is “brown and bland.” It truly is, with a near-neon color palette punctuated by bold black details. As a collector and lover of many types of books, zines, comics, and cookbooks, it’s not often that I’m truly interested in the design of a book, but this one is really unique and well done.
Like many vegan cookbooks, the beginning of V is a primer on vegan basics and staples in the vegan pantry. As you’ll find throughout the book, though, there are many unique takes and flavors that you won’t find in a Vegan 101 style of book - some of the staples range from pickled grapes, to types of edible flowers, to candied zucchini, to how to make tofu from scratch. It’s definitely a play on the basics of vegan cooking, but elevated, stretched, and experimented with.
The variety and depth of the recipes is really interesting here. There is definitely a mishmash of styles involved: Israeli, Greek, Mexican, Polish, Chinese, Peruvian, Vietnamese...and the list goes on. But these flavors are almost expected from someone so well traveled, and she really brings all of the pieces together in a way that makes sense. It’s all very fresh, fun food that’s a step above the vegan basics that many cookbooks share.
And that’s one of the biggest takeaways from V - we wouldn’t consider this a beginner cookbook. But that’s not a bad thing at all. As vegans of going on six years, we’ve already mastered chili, stir fries, and tofu scrambles. V brings a breath of fresh air into a seasoned vegan’s kitchen, and incorporates new flavors that most would not have tried before.
who this book is for
Vegans (or whole-foods loving people) who know the basics and are looking for more interesting, impactful meals or to expand their current cooking repertoire.
the best part
The vibrancy of the design, photography, and food. (Perfect for shedding winter dreariness.)
- vietnamese summer rolls
- sweet potato falafel sliders
- chocolate smoky tofu mole in tacos with grilled calçots
- three cherry swiss roll trifle
- fleur de sel chocolate peanut butter cups with popping candy
V is for Vegan is out now, and you can get it at Amazon or find out more about Kerstin Rodgers at her website, Ms Marmite Lover.