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The 30-Minute Vegan's Taste of the East: 150 Asian-Inspired Recipes - from Soba Noodles to Summer Rolls [Paperback]

Mark Reinfeld , Jennifer Murray
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
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Book Description

July 6 2010
Noted vegans and vegetarians love Mark Reinfeld and Jennifer Murray's food. Food Network host and author Ellie Krieger lauds their recipes as "delicious, exciting, healthful, [and] accessible for everyone," while Deborah Madison notes their "appealing recipes, good information about food and cooking in general [and] surprisingly realistic approaches to thirty-minute cooking." Now, Reinfeld and Murray turn their skillets to the East, featuring over 150 vegan versions of favorite cuisine from India, Thailand, China, and Japan. 'Taste of the East' also offers inspired animal-free recipes from Indonesia, Nepal, Vietnam, Korea, Tibet, Iran, and Afghanistan.

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Review

Library Journal, 6/25/10
“The vegan's answer to Rachael Ray and Mr. Food, this is recommended for anyone wishing to re-create their favorite Asian restaurant dishes without the meat.”

Blogcritics, 6/29/10
“For vegetarians who are ready to take the step to vegan and omnivores that would like to add animal-free dishes to their diet, The 30 Minute Vegan’s Taste of the East offers an array of dishes that will make their experimentation easy. Vegans will find it is an excellent addition to their cookbook libraries.”
 
VegCooking Chef Spotlight
“Mark Reinfeld is poised at the leading edge of contemporary vegan cooking.”

The Hungry Vegan blog, 7/9/10
“Like accelerated culinary nirvana…Whether you want to impress your friends and family with your cooking prowess or you just enjoy eating great Asian cuisine, get yourself a copy of The 30 Minute Vegan's Taste of the East. It will inspire and delight you and awaken the creative culinary genius within you.”

Portland Oregonian, 7/13/10
“There's a…’keep it simple’ approach to Taste of the East. Murray and Reinfeld must have been thinking weeknight suppers with the 150 recipes they've assembled, which includes hearty noodle and rice bowls, Indian stews, Chinese stir fries and Southeast Asian fusion”
 
The Hippo, 7/15/10
“Aside from its veganness, Taste of the East also offers a nice little primer on the differences between the cuisines of Japan, China, Thailand and India…Vegan or not, if you’re looking to expand into Asian cooking, Taste of the East can offer a good guide.”
 
Basil & Spice, 7/18/10
“An excellent cookbook for cooking Asian food in less than 30 minutes…The acquisition would be perfect for dieters everywhere.”
 
Leslie Loves Veggies Blog, 7/25/10
“Complete with at-a-glance cooking charts, key Asian pantry ingredients, all-new preparation techniques, and unique cooking tips, Taste of the East is a must-have addition to your cookbook shelf.”

Chicago Vegan Restaurant Examiner, 8/19/10
“The recipes pop with bright flavors, like their Panang Curry and Tofu Tikka Masala and luscious textures, like the silky Mango Custard Pudding and Coconut Spinach Rice. Not only do the recipes emphasize fresh, healthy preparations, but they are a breeze to put together, most clocking in at thirty minutes or less with prep and cooking time included unless otherwise indicated…This cookbook is for anyone from the novice to the experienced home cook: anyone who loves the bold, satisfying aromas and flavors at the Indian buffet or wonders how much she could improve on the sesame tofu at the local Chinese restaurant should run out and get this gem of a cookbook. I've only had it for a few weeks and it has already found its way into my top ten cookbook rotation. Very impressive!”

January Magazine, 8/29/10
“Even non-vegans will enjoy these simple and well-described recipes for Madras Curry, Mu Shu Vegetables, Pad Thai, Wontons and more.”

CurledUpWithAGoodBook.com, 9/6/10
“A new recipe book that will inspire you to cook…Will be useful for those wanting to try new flavors or improve their health through diet.”

Midwest Book Review, September 2010
“An extraordinary compilation of vegan dishes…The recipes' instructions are described at length in user-friendly detail. Simple cooking charts, suggested preparation techniques, cooking tips and more round out this excellent, easy-to-use addition to any vegan cookbook collection.”
 
Veganacious.com, 10/07/10
“When time is limited and you want to try something new and Asian, reach for Mark Reinfeld and Jennifer Murray’s wonderful cookbook. Whether you have experience with Asian cuisine or want to learn more about foods from the East, this is one you are sure to enjoy again and again.”

White Pumpkin Seeds Blog, 10/07/10
“The kick of hot peppers, blends of exotic spices, and the crispness of fresh vegetables all await you inside the covers of this must-try cookbook.”

San Francisco Book Review, October 2010
“A great way to introduce vegan cooking to your kitchen…The kick of hot peppers, blends of exotic spices, and the crispness of fresh vegetables await you inside the covers of this must-try cookbook.”

Cher
“Mark and Jennifer are on the cutting edge of healthy dining. This is vegan cuisine at its finest.”

Deborah Madison, author of Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone and Local Flavors
“Whether you are vegan or not, this is a very appealing collection of recipes. I know they’re going to become part of my culinary life.”

The Vegetarian, Winter 2010
“With wonderful recipes on every page, this book takes you on a culinary journey through India, China, and Japan imparting all you need to know to recreate the flavors of the east.”
 
Midwest Book Review, December 2010
“An outstanding survey highly recommended for any culinary collection where vegan cooking is of interest.”

ElevateDifference.com, 12/18/10
“If you gave up a dish when you became vegan and never thought you’d see it again, have a look at this book; you’re likely to find it here...Once you find your lost beloved, try a new recipe to go with it. You’ll be glad you did!”

As a Vegan (blog), 6/25/11
“I would highly recommend this book to both those who need to prepare meals quickly and those who enjoy cooking.”

About the Author

Mark Reinfeld is founding chef of the celebrated Blossoming Lotus restaurant. His cookbook, 'Vegan Fusion World Cuisine', won a Gourmand Award for Best Vegetarian Cookbook in the USA. Along with Reinfeld, Jennifer Murray is the coauthor of 'The 30-Minute Vegan' and 'The Complete Idiot's Guide to Eating Raw'. She teaches vegan cooking, baking, and raw food preparation classes internationally. They live in Kaua'i, Hawaii.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My new favourite Vegan Cook Book Jan. 27 2011
Format:Paperback
I purchased this book a couple of weeks ago based on the table of contents. I hadn't really heard of it or the authors but the recipes looked good, with good fresh ingredients, so I decided to give it a try. We are gluten-free vegans too so recipes from the east that are more rice-based are good news for us. I love that it has well-known dishes from India, Thailand, China, and Japan. The Fusion section is a bonus of some pretty great recipes too. One of the most fun things I've done from this cook book was to make my own kim chee! So far I've made a lot of the recipes from India. They have been fabulous, so beautifully spiced! We liked the Potato Pea Curry, Tropical Coconut Currie, the vegan korma was to die for! I'm looking forward to trying some of the savory pancake recipes and the thai soups. There are a crazy number of recipes to try in this book. What I love and also can't believe about this book is that it really is true to its title. It really does pretty much only take 30 minutes to make the recipes. I still can't believe that I can make all these Asian dishes on week nights!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars meh... Nov. 15 2012
Format:Paperback
I've had this book for a while, and have made a few of the recipes to mediocre results.

As background, I am a bit of a nut when it comes to vegan cookbooks and probably own about 20 of them. I cook often and have a reputatuon with my friends and family for being a good cook, so I don't think the issue is me, although I guess it can't be ruled out.

Anyway, because I hadn't enjoyed much from this book it was just collecting dust, so i pulled it out and decided to try it again this past week. I made three recipes - the lemon tofu, chow mein, and spicy green beans. All three were pretty underwhelming, with flavours anywhere from bland to one-dimensional. And, it was a lot more time consuming than 30 minutes, but then again I was making more than one item.

With so many truly amazing vegan cookbooks out there I'd save your money and give this one a pass. I'm taking mine over to the used bookstore this week.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome international Flavor ! Feb. 3 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Well laid out and great international flavor ! Great for vegans and people with food allergies. Could use more photos !
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5.0 out of 5 stars One one my favorites cook books Dec 12 2012
By Amelie
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This one, and the 30 minutes vegan are one of the best cook books I own. Fast and tasty recipes. They are great source of inspiration.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars  26 reviews
54 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Whole Lot More than Curry in a Hurry July 8 2010
By G. B. Rhamy - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
As soon as I heard about this book, I couldn't wait to get my hands on a copy. After all, what foodie (vegan or otherwise), wouldn't love a book filled with 150 Asian-inspired recipes you can prepare in 30 minutes or less? With a collection of delectable dishes from Afghanistan to Viet Nam, The 30-Minute Vegan's Taste of the East held the promise of accelerated culinary nirvana.

I am already a huge fan of the authors' best-selling book, The 30 Minute Vegan. So I wondered if they could they possibly outdo themselves with another collection of 30-minute recipes? As soon as I honed in on the recipe for Vanilla Cardamom Rose Lassi on page 38, I quickly realized they had.

The most enticing ingredients combine to create a romantic beverage that is intoxicatingly fragrant. I felt at ease substituting coconut milk kefir for the coconut milk yogurt suggested in this recipe, with palate-pleasing results. "Suggested" really is the key word in all of this book's wonderful recipes. In both 30-Minute Vegan books, authors Reinfeld and Murray encourage readers to experiment and have fun playing with the recipes. While many authors invite readers to create their own variations, in an almost magical way, Reinfeld and Murray truly inspire such creativity.

Like a mystery novel page-turner just waiting to be devoured, Taste of the East excited both my curiosity and my taste buds. With dishes like Tibetan Dumplings, Tempeh Vegetable Korma, and Arame Lotus Root Sauté, it was agonizingly difficult choosing the next recipe to sink my teeth into. Thoughtfully, Taste of the East is organized by country of origin, so you don't have to wait to get to the end of the book to get to the dessert recipes. Within each section, the recipes are listed in the order you'd find them on a menu, from appetizers to desserts. Each section starts with a glossary of ingredients unique to the country's cuisine, and sprinkled throughout the book are helpful boxes with Thoughtful Chef's Tips and Tricks. (What do you do if you tear your nori in the middle of making a sushi roll?) Highly useful appendixes include Preparation Basics for everything from toasting spices, nuts, and seeds to roasting tofu and tempeh.

In the spirit of sweetness, (and because I have absolutely no problem with eating dessert first), I dove straight ahead into two enticing recipes--Mango Custard Pudding from China and Black Rice Pudding from Thailand. Both desserts were decadently rich, creamy, and sweet.

After satisfying my sweet tooth, it was time to explore more serious fare. Inspired by the red lentil dal I enjoyed recently on a trip to Ananda Village, I decided to try the Indian Dhal and paired it with the recipe for Coconut Spinach Rice. True to the book's promise, once I had all of the ingredients assembled, both dishes went from stove to table in no more than thirty minutes and were as tasty as any dish it might take hours to prepare.

Next, I wanted to become reacquainted with a dish I'd only eaten once many years ago. Indonesian Gado Gado is a delightful medley of both raw and cooked vegetables served with a sassy peanut sauce dressing. Although the dish is traditionally made with cooked potatoes, I used yams instead, which together with roasted tempeh, red cabbage, green beans, carrots, cauliflower, red onions, tomatoes, and cucumbers created a vibrantly delectable fusion of flavors. The dressing blended peanut butter, coconut milk, garlic, garlic, jalapeño, maple syrup, and tamarind paste together and was the perfect accompaniment.

Before writing this review, I last tried the recipe for Sweet Soybean Sauce with Noodles, better known as Pad Siew. This simple dish, made with a soy-sauce marinade and stir-fried vegetables, is surprisingly tasty. Among the ingredients is a fish-free sauce (the recipe is in the book!) which substitutes for the traditional fish sauce used in many Thai dishes. It's an optional ingredient in this recipe, but it added a little pizazz to my Pad Siew. And I appreciate having an alternative to fish sauce on hand for all of my other Thai cooking.

Whether you want to impress your friends and family with your cooking prowess or you just enjoy eating great Asian cuisine, I highly recommend The 30 Minute Vegan's Taste of the East. This jewel of a book will inspire and delight you and awaken the creative culinary genius within you.
44 of 52 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Seems like it was written in 30 minutes; very disappointing. March 6 2011
By Kevin Smith - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I wonder if the writers bothered to eat all of these dishes first...some are so inedible that no one who even tasted them would've dared to include them in a cookbook. After making a dozen of these dishes, I give this book a thumbs down, mainly because of how slapped-together the recipes seem. This is not authentic Indian cooking in any way; vegan or not. It's like they just looked some recipes up online and then slightly modified them without ever trying them once. Out of ten Indian dishes, and one each Thai and Chinese, three were good and the rest ranged from mediocre to boring to just plan disgusting. The directions are often vague (they call for "mustard seeds" sometimes...well, brown or yellow? The two are totally different flavors) and I found that the cooking times were underestimated (most of this stuff takes longer than 30 minutes) and most recipes didn't have nearly enough sauce or spices to cover the main ingredients.

Plus, the writers seem to have ignored some really basic cooking techniques. The dhal on page 5 called for 8 1/2 cups of water. I knew that would be too much, so I reduced it to 6 and it was still way too much. You shouldn't be bale to shoot dhal out of a hose to water your plants with; you should be able to eat it with a fork. The coconut spinach rice on page 10 is the blandest, most tasteless imitation of paste I've ever made out of a cookbook. I tried to spice it up afterwards, but nothing could save it. Worst of all, the cauliflower chickpea subji on page 19 was absolutely inedible. Anyone who cooks with cardamom should know that 1/2 teaspooon is total overkill, but I followed their directions. It turned out exactly like I guessed; bitterly awful. I couldn't eat a single bite. You owe me a medium carrot and half a head of cauliflower dudes.

I have been a huge fan of Indian food for over a decade and been a vegan for the last five years, so I was excited to get this cookbook. I have been adapting recipes from vegetarian Indian cookbooks for awhile and have eaten at almost every Indian restaurant on the famous Devon Avenue here in Chicago, so I'd like to think I know what I'm talking about when I judge Indian food. It's sad, because there are a few good things in here (the mulligatawny, for one), but overall this is money poorly spent. There are other vegan Indian cookbooks out there; my advice is to try any besides this one.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Praise for the latest 30 MINUTE VEGAN! Sept. 8 2010
By Lisa & Joe - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Kudos and gratitude to Mark Reinfeld and Jennifer Murray for 30 MINUTE VEGAN: TASTE OF THE EAST and continuing to transform our culinary reality one incredibly delicious/healthful/creative recipe at a time!

These Asian inspired creations explode with taste and leave us and our friends wanting more. Luckily there are 150 gems in this latest cookbook, so we'll be busy indulging our own palettes and inspiring others' till the last dish has been made...

Lisa and Joe Rich
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent, easy-to-use addition to any vegan cookbook collection July 10 2010
By Midwest Book Review - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Award-winning chefs Mark Reinfeld and Jennifer Murray present The 30 Minute Vegan's Taste of the East, an extraordinary compilation of vegan dishes from India, Thailand, China, Indonesia, Nepal, Japan and more Asian nations. Each dish can be created in thirty minutes or less. The recipes' instructions are described at length in user-friendly detail. Simple cooking charts, suggested preparation techniques, cooking tips and more round out this excellent, easy-to-use addition to any vegan cookbook collection.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Even More Than I Was Hoping For March 31 2011
By Greensong - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
When I want to buy cookbook I thumb through the pictures and recipes seeking 5 or 6 that I inspire me to go home and try the out right away. If in the end I find 3 or 4 recipes that I really like a lot I feel like I've done well with my purchase and I'm very happy. The Taste of the East far exceeded both these criteria. Having cooked quite a bit, I always look at recipes as a jumping off point. Because most cookbooks need to appeal to the biggest cross section of people, I find that recipes in general tend to side towards lighter hand when it comes to flavor intensity. Invariably, after trying a recipe once as written, I add to, and embellish them to make them my own. With this book that was not so much the case. Many of the recipes, especially the curries, were rich, delicious and full of great flavors just as written.

I have tried a variety of recipes from this book so far and have been very pleased with the results. The Thai Coconut Soup, with the Summer Rolls made a beautiful and scrumptious meal which friends raved about especially when served with the peanut sauce. Of the Indian dishes we tried the Madras Curry and the Tempeh Vindaloo both of which were full of flavor and met approval all around the table. The Roasted Garlic Chutney is both unusual and amazing. It makes a fantastic spread on crackers and makes wraps something to write home about.

While it is true that I didn't manage all of the recipes in exactly 30 minutes it was pretty easy to see that the ones with a lot of vegetables to chop would take me longer. So, if I only had 30 minutes to cook I didn't use those recipes as there were plenty of others that I could manage in  hour. I also noticed that the dhal recipe didn't seem quite right. Everywhere else in the book brown mustard seeds were specified so I figured there was likely a typo with that and the lentil amount. I checked another book about the lentil to water ratio and saw that 2 cups of lentils to the 8 1/2 cups of water would be pretty standard and so I made it with 2 cups of lentils instead of 1 and it was great. It was a bit more like a soup than a puree with 2 cups which is how I like it but if you like it thicker just add a few more lentils.

Overall, I think this book is great. I would highly recommend it. Even if you just used it to learn how to make basic things for asian food like a good curry or garam masala spice blend, or a thai curry base you would be well served. I haven't even made 1/10th of the 150 recipes in this book yet and I am already very happy with my purchase. I am also looking forward to trying out many more of these gorgeous and tasty recipes.
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