Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Book Review and Giveaway:
Wild About Greens by Nava Atlas

I am wild about greens. Seriously. Greens are good. No—greens are glorious! They're nutritional powerhouses that come neatly packaged in brightly colored leaves and crunchy stalks. What's not to love?

If you're not already a fan of green leafy vegetables, you will be after tasting the delectable recipes in Nava Atlas's new book, Wild About Greens.

You will love the layout! Right up front, Nava introduces you to nature's bounty of leafy greens in alphabetical order. After learning a little about each one, you're treated to a listing of all of the recipes that feature them. So, if you want to make a salad with arugula, a soup with kale, and an entree with turnip greens, it couldn't be any easier to search through the recipes grouped under each vegetable.

Wild About Greens completely dispels the myth that the foundation of any salad need be lettuce. Not only are there much more delicious options, but you can really give your salads a nutritional boost by choosing a dark, leafy green instead. Here you'll find tasty salads made with every leafy green from watercress to kale to beet greens. I zoned in on this bright, citrusy, Mizuna (or Tatsoi) & Bok Choy Salad. As I wasn't making a trip to the Asian market that day, I substituted baby spinach for the Asian greens and jicama for the daikon radish, which were suggested variations. By storing the zesty Sesame-Ginger Dressing in a separate jar, I enjoyed this flavorful dish with dinner that evening and also for lunch over the next two days.

 Mizuna & Bok Choy Salad

Since pictures speak infinitely louder than words, I'll let the following photos tempt you further. Suffice it to say, every recipe was a winner. I plan to enjoy every one of the 125 recipes in this wonderful book before the end of the year. Feast your eyes on ...

Italian Style Potato and Escarole Soup
(all I can say about this one is "Mama mia!")

  Persian Spinach and Black-Eyed Peas
(I love a really good sabzi, and this is the best I've tasted in a long time!)

Hoisin-Glazed Collard Greens and Sweet Potatoes
(I'm adore sweet potatoes, onions, and collards. I was in heaven!)

Hoisin-Glazed Bok Choy with Tofu and Soba Noodles
(Once I got on the hoisin track, it was hard to get off. This was a spectacular summer dinner!)

Roasted Beet and Fennel Salad with Beet Greens and Oranges
(If you're a fool for beets like I am, do not detour. Dive directly into this recipe!)

Stir-Fried Sesame Kale and Red Cabbage 
(Colorful to the eyes and to the taste buds—if you can imagine that. 
Recipe below.)

Are you wild about greens? Then this book is for you. If you're not, you most certainly will be after perusing, preparing, and partaking in the recipes in Wild About Greens. And if you've been searching for creatively delicious ways to get more greens into your family's diet, don't wait another second to get your hands on a copy!

This spectacularly colorful and delicious Stir-Fried Sesame Kale and Red Cabbage recipe is just a taste of what you'll find within its pages. Reprinted with permission of the author and Sterling New York. ©Nava Atlas 2012. Enjoy!


8-12 oz kale, any variety
1/2 small or medium head red cabbage
1 1/2 Tbsp olive oil (I used less)
1 medium red onion, quartered and thinly sliced
2 tsp grated fresh or jarred ginger (I always use fresh)
1 Tbsp dark sesame oil 
1-2 Tbsp sesame seeds (preferably unhulled)
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste


Strip the kale leaves from the stems. Stack a few leaves and cut them into narrow strips. If desired, slice the stems thinly to use in the stir-fry; otherwise, discard.

Cut the red cabbage into thin slices about 2 inches long.

Heat the olive oil in a stir-fry pan or large skillet. Add the onion and sauté over medium heat until golden and soft.

Add the ginger, kale and cabbage. Turn the heat up to high and stir-fry for 3-4 minutes, stirring frequently, until both are brightly colored and tender-crisp.

Remove from the heat. Stir in the dark sesame oil and sesame seeds. Season with salt and pepper and serve at once.

Variation: You can add a small amount of another vegetable or two. I chose red bell pepper, cut into long narrow strips.

Update: The giveaway has now ended. Congratulations to Dawn (@VeganFazool)! The random number goddess shined down upon her this morning, and she won a copy of Wild About Greens! Thanks so much to everyone for participating! Please stay tuned for more great giveaways and delicious recipes to come. Dawn, please send me an email with your postal address so we can get your book right out to you!

Now for the giveaway: if you would you like to win a copy of Wild About Greens, here's all you need to do: Simply leave a comment below telling me what your favorite dark leafy green vegetable is and how you most enjoy preparing or eating it. Or tell me which dark leafy green you'd love to find new ways of preparing and enjoying!

To earn additional entries, you can do one or all of the following, and please leave a comment for each one you complete:

1. Like on Facebook.
2. Follow @navaatlas2 on Twitter.
3. Follow this blog by clicking the "follow" link in the upper left-hand corner of this page, subscribing via email, or through Networked Blogs.
4. Follow @Vegiegail on Twitter.
5. Tweet the following message: Win a copy of @navaatlas2's fab new book Wild About Greens & get your green on deliciously! #vegan #recipe #giveaway

Sunday, July 08, 2012

Happy Vegan Ice Cream Day!

Hello readers! I've been away from blogging for far too long, and I've missed you. Life (read: job) has gotten very much in the way of writing, but I have lots of delicious reviews and giveaways waiting in the queue for you, so stay tuned. Today I just wanted to take this moment to wish all of you a very happy Vegan Ice Cream Day!

It was early morning when I staged, shot, and then consumed this delectable frozen dessert made with So Delicious Dairy Free Vanilla Bean Coconut Milk Ice Cream (I am, after all, a vanilla girl at heart), Edward & Sons Let's Do Sprinkelz (I mixed the chocolate and the pastel sprinkles together), and Soyatoo Whipped Topping (the kind in the box, as I can still never get more than half the contents out of the can).

Did it feel very naughty to eat an ice cream sundae for breakfast? You betcha! But since it's already 80° and Vegan Ice Cream Day comes but once a year, what the heck, right?

Now that you know it's Vegan Ice Cream Day, how will you celebrate?