Lucky Peach Presents Power Vegetables, by Peter Meehan


Power Vegetables will get you thinking about preparing vegetables in ways you may have never dreamed.  The “Power” stands for powerful bold flavors that will make these vegetarian dishes (yes, there are many recipes which include dairy, eggs, and cheese) hold their own in the flavor category. The goal of the author is to create more weeknight vegetable centric cooking and make the flavors sing. Many of the recipes are inspired from popular USA restaurants or chefs.

There are a good amount of traditional recipes such as Quiche Lorraine, Carrot Cake, Zucchini Bread, Caesar Salad, French Onion Soup, Hummus, Salsas, Dips and Dressings but new takes on some traditional recipes such as adding red miso to hummus for an unexpected flavor punch. With categories such as starters, pies and the like, ensemble players, soups/soupy, mains, breads and cakes, this is definitely a book for the adventurous cook. Get ready to stock your panty with spices or condiments you may not frequently use in the kitchen, a trip to your local Asian or spice store may prove to be helpful. If not as adventurous to pick up “all” the ingredients called for in the recipe, the bare bones of the recipes are solid enough that even if you were to leave out a hard to find ingredient it would still be good but just not have that extra pop of flavor the author intends.

I found many recipes I am eager to try-many of which may be a good overall guide to play with. I will try the Hummus, pg. 42. I am not sure if I will add the 1 Tbls. of red miso though, it is so untraditional and I would not purchase red miso just for this preparation. I am willing to try method and use the ratio of other ingredients to make a smooth hummus. XO Sauce,  is one I have made before and the version on pg. 94 looks tempting if I can find a small amount of dried scallop and shrimps (my Asian grocer sells large bags of dried seafood)-if not, I may still make it sans the dried seafood and I am sure it will still be fantastic. The Torta di Ebre, pg. 108, really caught my eye, a traditional Roman style pie made with Swiss chard and parmesan. Another recipe which was picture perfect but so simple to make is the BBQ Carrots with Homemade Ranch, pg. 152. I am always searching for the perfect Ranch Dressing recipe, maybe this will be the one!  Elote, pg. 156, would also be perfectly made on the BBQ-grilled corn with mayo, parmesan, and chili powder and lime juice.  There are plenty of butternut squash, and sweet potato recipes such as Butternut Squash with Piquillo Crema, pg. 184, Roasted Squash with Pipan Rojo, pg. 195,6, Sweet Potato Burrito, pg. 198 to get me excited, and even  Cauliflower Chaat, pg. 227, Naan, pg. 209, and Falafel, pg. 216, recipes.

I received this book for my honest review from Blogging for Books.  I would recommend this book to anyone who loves to experiment with new and modern flavors and wants to add more vegetables into their weekday cooking.


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