Eat More Vegetables: Delicious Vegetarian Recipes

Do yourself and Mother Earth a favor, and eat more vegetables. Try these innovative vegetarian recipes to get started.
By Arthur Potts Dawson
October 1, 2012
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Let Lemon and Parsnip Soup cool for a few minutes, then transfer to a blender in batches and blend until smooth, or keep it whole and chunky—either way, the flavor will be amazing.
Photo Courtesy Mitchell Beazley
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Eat Your Vegetables (Mitchell Beazley, 2012) by Arthur Potts Dawson answers the call to eat more vegetables and eat less meat by showcasing vegetables as main courses as well as side dishes. This wonderful cookbook, written by one of the most eco and sustainability conscious chefs in the world, contains delicious and healthy recipes accompanied by vibrant, colorful photography.  In this excerpt, learn how to eat more vegetables, and try these four vegetarian recipes to get started. 

You can purchase this book from the MOTHER EARTH NEWS store: Eat Your Vegetables.

We all know we should eat more veg. We all know we should eat less meat. This book isn’t a preach or a rant about why cooking and eating fresh, seasonal, local, organic food matters, though of course it does. I’m not going to tell you how to shop (locally, at the market, making the most of what’s on special). I’m not even going to tell you to grow your own (go on—have a go!). Eat Your Vegetables is simply a storehouse of my favorite recipes encouraging you to do just that—eat more vegetables. It’s a good, old-fashioned cookbook designed to help you make the most of our seasons and the different flavors created by the power of the sun.

For most of us, veggies are just the accompaniment: think of your Sunday roast, for example. You might decide on chicken or roast beef. But what about the roast potatoes and garlic cloves? The carrots, parsnips, mushrooms, tomatoes, onions, beet, asparagus, courgettes, and other vegetables are the unsung heroes of cooking. We all need a little help to flip the way we cook. This isn’t about becoming vegetarian, and this isn’t a vegetarian cookbook—this is about putting veg at the center of the plate.

After 25 years as a professional chef I know that the key to cooking veg is to use what’s in season—it’ll taste better, it’ll cost you less, and the more of the rainbow you eat, the better you’ll feel. So start with that—whether you’re planning an evening meal or an entire feast based around vegetables.

With all of these vegetable-centered recipes, you will sail through the seasons, cooking lip-smackingly delicious meals, and you’ll find it a breeze to adapt the methods to other vegetables, choose your own accompaniments, and create your very own feasts.

Eating more veg, buying what’s in season, buying fresh and locally, as well as growing your own, all contribute to your health—and the health of our precious home.

Lemon and Parsnip Soup Recipe

4 lb 8 oz parsnips
1 large white onion
1 celery heart
3 garlic cloves
1/4 lb plus 2 tbsp (1 1/4 sticks) butter
juice and finely grated zest of 2 unwaxed lemons, plus extra juice to taste
1 cup medium-dry white wine
8 cups vegetable stock
1 cup milk
salt and pepper
peeled lemon slices, to garnish 

Serves 4 - 6, Vegetarian

1. Cut the parsnips, onion, and celery heart into 3/4 inch cubes. Roughly chop the garlic cloves.

2. Melt the butter in a heavy saucepan, add all the vegetables and the garlic, season with salt and pepper and mix well. Cook over medium heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the juice and lemon zest and the wine and allow the liquid to evaporate before adding the stock. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes, until the parsnips are tender.

3. Add the milk and allow the soup to come almost to boiling point before turning off the heat. Let cool for a few minutes, then transfer to a blender in batches and blend until smooth, or keep it whole and chunky—either way, the flavor will be amazing. Add a touch more lemon juice if you don’t think the soup is lemony enough, and check the seasoning. Return to the pan to reheat gently, if blended. Serve warm, in bowls, with a slice of peeled lemon placed in the center.

Sage Potato Galette Recipe

6 large Yukon gold or other floury potatoes
2/3 cup olive oil
12 sage leaves, finely chopped
1/4 lb plus 2 tbsp (1 1/4 sticks) butter
salt and pepper 

Serves 8, Vegetarian

1. Grate the potatoes coarsely. You need to work fairly fast because the potatoes will start to turn brown quite quickly and you can’t rinse or store them in water, as you will wash away the starch needed to bind the galette.

2. Drizzle half the olive oil into a large skillet and place over medium heat without allowing it to get hot enough to smoke. Once you have grated half the potato, or enough to cover the base of the pan to a depth of 3/4 inch, mix with half the chopped sage, and pat the potato down in the pan using a potato masher—this has a wide surface area and allows you to create a really even, flat pancake. Once the galette has begun to settle in the pan, start to add half the butter in very small pieces to the edges of the pan, letting it melt and run into the center, which will give a lovely nutty flavor to the potatoes. Cook for 8 - 10 minutes, until golden brown on the underside. Gently slide the galette onto a wooden board, then place the pan over the galette and invert the board so the galette is back in the pan, cooked side up. Cook for 8 - 10 minutes, until the underside is golden brown and crunchy.

3. Remove the galette from the pan and keep warm while you grate and cook the remaining potato to make another galette. Serve Sage Potato Galettes hot, cut into wedges.

Butternut Squash Soup Recipe With Nutmeg and Ginger

5 tbsp olive oil
1 large white onion, cut into 3/4 inch cubes
1 head of celery, trimmed and cut into 3/4 inch pieces
2 lb 4 oz butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 3/4 inch cubes
3 garlic cloves, chopped
2 inches fresh ginger root, peeled and cut into tiny cubes
1 tsp crushed red pepper
1/3 cup white long-grain rice
3/4 cup medium-dry white wine
6 cups vegetable stock
whole nutmeg, for grating
1 lemon, for squeezing
salt and pepper 

Serves 4 - 6, Vegetarian

1. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan, add the onion and celery, and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the squash, garlic, and ginger, season with salt and pepper, then add the red pepper. Cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally and without allowing the vegetables to catch on the base of the pan too much. Add the rice and cook, stirring, for an additional 5 minutes.

2. Stir in the wine and loosen any brown bits stuck to the pan—then allow all the liquid to evaporate before adding the stock. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes, or until the rice is tender. Grate in 10 strokes of nutmeg, add a squeeze of lemon juice, and check the seasoning.

Okra Salad Recipe With Sesame, Honey and Eggplant

1 lb 5 oz okra
2 lb 4 oz eggplant
6 tbsp olive oil
6 tbsp honey
6 tbsp sesame seeds
salt and pepper 

Serves 6, Vegetarian

1. Wash the okra and chop off the tops. Cut the okra into 1 1/4 inch long pieces and boil in salted water for 5 minutes. Drain and refresh then reserve at room temperature.

2. Cut the eggplant into 1 1/4 inch cubes and then fry in the olive oil. Once the eggplant is golden brown, tip it into a colander to drain off the oil, then place in a large mixing bowl. Add the okra, honey, and sesame seeds. Season and mix well, then serve at room temperature.


This excerpt has been reprinted with permission from Eat Your Vegetables, by Arthur Potts Dawson, published by Mitchell Beazley, 2012. 


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Post a comment below.

 

zhai whirlston
10/18/2012 7:47:43 AM
Plate Oil Filter http://www.seedoilpress.com/product/oil_press/plate_oil_filter.html :) This is a very useful article, thanks form share.

Kathy Balestrieri
10/5/2012 6:54:24 PM
Why not WHAT in the US, Jim Corcoran?

Jim Corcoran
10/2/2012 4:00:41 PM
Why not in the US??? It would make good business sense! The number of vegans has doubled in the US in less than 3 years. Here are two uplifting videos to help everyone understand why so many people are making this life affirming choice: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fKr4HZ7ukSE and http://www.veganvideo.org/.








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