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The Vegetarian 5-Ingredient Gourmet: 250 Simple Recipes and Dozens of Healthy Menus for Eating Well Every Day [Paperback]

Nava Atlas
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
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Book Description

June 19 2001
“Nava Atlas has solutions for maintaining sophisticated flavors in the dishes she creates and still manages to keep the ingredients healthy.” —Cooking Light

Eating healthfully is a challenge for those with fast-paced lives. In The Vegetarian 5-Ingredient Gourmet, Nava Atlas pares meal preparation down to the essentials, using just a few high-quality ingredients in each delicious dish. Focusing on whole foods and fresh produce (with a little help from convenient natural sauces and condiments) she serves up a varied range of choices for everyday fare.
More than 250 recipes include soups, salads, and pastas; grain, bean, and soy entrees; wraps and sandwich fillings; simple side dishes; fruit-filled finales; and more. The full-flavored fare made from five ingredients or less includes Curried Red Lentil and Spinach Soup; Greek-Flavored Potato Salad; Black Bean Nachos Grandes; Baked Barbecue Tofu and Peppers; and Miniature Fresh Fruit Tarts. Filled with ingenious shortcuts and sprinkled with kitchen wisdom and tips throughout, The Vegetarian 5-Ingredient Gourmet also offers the reader dozens of menu suggestions to help make meal planning effortless.
From sophisticated (Mixed Greens with Pears, Cranberries, and Goat Cheese) to kid-friendly, (Peanut Butter Noodles), here are recipes to suit every taste. Nava Atlas makes it simple for busy families or active singles to eat the kind of high-nutrient foods everyone needs and to enjoy the robust flavors everyone craves.

Frequently Bought Together

The Vegetarian 5-Ingredient Gourmet: 250 Simple Recipes and Dozens of Healthy Menus for Eating Well Every Day + Becoming Vegetarian, Revised + The Everything Vegetarian Cookbook: 300 Healthy Recipes Everyone Will Enjoy
Price For All Three: CDN$ 44.92

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If you don't get home until six or later and still need to get dinner on the table, this is the book for you. The Vegetarian 5-Ingredient Gourmet pares down ingredients to their simplest and most flavorful form. "Keeping things simple takes the frantic quality--and pressure--out of preparing a meal," says author Nava Atlas. "Simplifying helps you to slow down and enjoy the process of cooking."

Atlas devotes a whole chapter to tofu and soy products, including seitan and packaged products like soy "hot dogs" and "sausage." She also has a chapter on "Rudimentary Wraps," which includes recipes for Avocado and Ricotta Soft Tacos, Goat Cheese and Red Pepper Wraps, and the ever popular Black Bean Burrito (spice them with green chiles). Pasta is a quick and easy favorite. Keep jarred sauce on hand and you have the beginnings of Pasta with Triple Red Sauce or Pasta with Olive Sauce. Serve veggie burgers on whole-grain buns with a side of Creamy Coleslaw or Baked Barbecued Tofu and Potato Kebabs for an easy weeknight meal. Or try Asian Sesame-Soy Noodles paired with Broccoli and Tofu in Peanut Sauce.

Every recipe includes a nutritional breakdown including calories, fat, protein, carbohydrates, cholesterol, and sodium. Nearly every recipe has suggestions for what to pair the dish with and on what page to find it. This is an especially handy cookbook for time-crunched families. The food is easy, quick, healthy, and doesn't require great concentration to prepare. --Dana Van Nest

From Publishers Weekly

Vegetarian expert Atlas (Vegetariana and Vegetarian Express) offers a slew of simple, quick recipes, most of which make use of packaged and canned foods. A few unusual soups stand out, such as Rice, Lettuce, and Mushroom Broth, and Cold Curried Cucumber Soup made tangy with a dose of buttermilk. Salads include Chickpea Salad with Roasted Peppers, made with canned chickpeas and jarred red peppers, as well as a more upscale Warm Potato Salad with Goat Cheese. Some recipes, Pinto Beans and Corn, for instance, involve little more than warming up and stirring together the contents of various cans. Although this is not a vegan cookbook, many of its recipes do eschew butter; Ravioli or Tortellini with Sweet Potato Sauce calls for ricotta ravioli, but replaces butter or oil with nonhydrogenated margarine. Each recipe carries a suggested menu Atlas encourages readers to match Mixed Olives Pizza (made with a store-bought crust) with Corn Slaw and nutritional information. A chapter on wraps offers some nice alternatives to sandwiches, such as Eggplant Parmigiana Wraps. Desserts are fruit-based, such as Miniature Fresh Fruit Tarts made with packaged graham cracker pie shells, applesauce and yogurt. Many of Atlas's recipes are already familiar, but will be useful for beginning vegetarians, as well as for those who lead busy lives. 100 b&w illustrations. (June 19) Forecast: The Use-As-Few-Ingredients-as-Possible genre may be reaching saturation, so the title could backfire. On the other hand, Vegetariana sold more than 100,000 copies, and clearly huge numbers of health-conscious people are pressed for time, so this book stands a good chance of finding its niche.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Serviceable, Prosaic Oct. 15 2002
I don't think I was quite the right audience for this cookbook-for me, it rated a 3; but for the right person, it's a 4.
The right person for this book is seeking a way to make regular, balanced vegetarian (ovo-lacto) weeknight meals on the fly, who wants tried and true fare. Much is made of canned goods, dried herb blends, bottled salsa and salad dressings, frozen corn, and like ingredients that are easily found in supermarkets. This is strictly family food, not party impressive, with an eye on the fact that kids may be in the mix. There is little to chop, mostly there is throwing together in one pot or bowl. Menu suggestions are offered here and there, as well as basic helpful hints.
I need more originality and flavor than this book offers. The helpful hints are very basic. I appreciate the menu suggestions--I'm still learning about what goes with what in a vegetarian meal--but they were not consistently available. A different editor might have caught some inconsistencies in the text. An example: for the Split Pea and Barley Soup, there is a helpful hint on the same page on which it appears that reads something like, "Sometimes I like to add rice or barley to the Split Pea and Barley Soup (page 'x')." Well, yes, you might like to add barley since it is called for and yes, it is on page 'x', the same page you are reading at the moment. If you choose to do rice, do you substitute it for the barley? It does not elaborate.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My favorite weeknight cookbook Nov. 21 2002
By A Customer
I disagree with the previous reviewer. Everything I've made from this book is simple but tasty. That's the point of it. I stocked my pantry according to the author's suggestions and so there is always something easy and healthy I can make for my family, even if it is 6:30 and I am already brain-dead. Because the recipes are so clear and simple, if I am in the mood and time allows, I improvise on them. That makes it fun, too. I have a lot of cookbooks but this is the only one I use during the week. Not everyone in my family is vegetarian, but they are always happy with these meals.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
By A.B.
I bought this cookbook for my mom, a vegetarian who seems to subsist on peanut butter and crackers and vitamins. The problem is that she doesn't seem to ever have the ingredients or the time to make good vegetarian dishes. And it doesn't help that my dad, an extreme carnivoire, insists on doing all the grocery shopping. This book is genius in it's ability to provide tasty recipes with very common and very few ingredients. In fact, the author gives a sample list of things to keep your pantry and refrigerator stocked with. The recipes are so appealing that I'm tempted to become a vegetarian myself. This is a recipe book that you will actually use on a regular basis rather than letting it look pretty on your shelf. And, it's fairly inexpensive.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love It! Dec 7 2008
By Amazon Customer TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
First off let me just say, I don't like cooking. I hate it. I am trying to eat more healthy though, and I want to move to more of plant based diet. This is the perfect book to do that. It isn't fancy (hard to do fancy with five or less ingredients) but it is healthy and tasty. Other books have 50 ways of tossing a green salad but this doesn't do that. It has simple ways of preparing foods such as beans, lentils, and tofu in an easy and non-intimidating way. All of the recipes that I have tried so far have turned out well and that encourages me to keep on trying new stuff.

I never intended to become a vegetarian, but going through this book I can plan meals (that I look forward to!) for weeks at a time without meat!
I don't think a book on vegetarian cooking can get a higher compliment :)
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5.0 out of 5 stars A treasure of a cookbook! Aug. 19 2002
By Melanie
Hooray! This is the cookbook for which I have been waiting. In fact, if you are vegetarian or vegan, you have very likely been waiting for it, too. It truly has wide appeal. Whether you are a veggie teen, an active and over-committed adult, or a senior citizen wanting to keep it simple (as in easy), you will enjoy and value Nava Atlas' book as much as I do. There is so much I love about it, and only two things I would change; but they are teensy-weensy criticisms. First, about the recipes: true to her word, Ms. Atlas has somehow managed to create 250 recipes, each with five or less ingredients. You will find familiar stand-bys, as well as new and imaginative dishes. Looking for a hummus recipe? It's in there. How about veggie pizza? It's in there, too (twelve pages of pizza recipes-delicioso!) Do you enjoy a comforting, nourishing soup? Yep; you will find that, too, in "Chapter 1: Simplicity in a Soup Pot." What about tofu? I have been eating tofu regularly for nearly ten years now. You can imagine that my favorite tofu recipes no longer create much excitement at the dining table. Therefore, I am always on the lookout for an addition to my tofu repertoire. Was I ever excited to find an entire chapter ("Chapter 5: Essential Soy") devoted solely to tofu recipes! That's where I headed first.
There is so much more to The Vegetarian 5-Ingredient Gourmet than recipes. If your mantra is, "I don't have [pick one or more] a) the time, b) the inclination, c) the know-how to successfully prepare a vegetarian or vegan meal," have no fear. Ms. Atlas has done all the thinking and the work (except the cooking, of course), including a complete shopping list for stocking your cupboards, menu suggestions for each and every recipe, a menu-planning guide, and nutritional statistics.
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Most recent customer reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars One Star
Gave it as a gift
Published 3 months ago by Andree Beckwith
5.0 out of 5 stars Simple
I use this cookbook all the time, very simple recipes ... great for a fast easy meal. I like that she has recommendations for complementary sides, etc.
Published 10 months ago by Veggieburgs
5.0 out of 5 stars Thanks
Got a lot of use from this. Easy to follow and a quick read. Would recommend this book to all
Published 15 months ago by justagirl
4.0 out of 5 stars Does what it says
Pictures would have helped make this book better. Although the recipes are quick easy to follow and ultimately that's what I wanted.
Published 21 months ago by KATHRYN R VARGA
5.0 out of 5 stars Simple and tasty
I haven't cooked anything from this book yet, but when you look at it's name - it tells it all. I love the fact, that you can cook a real nice meal by using only 5 ingridients
Published 21 months ago by Maria
5.0 out of 5 stars Great buy
I decided to buy a vegetarian cook book to try and cook mostly vegetarian at home. The recipes were delicious, quick, easy and healthy too. Read more
Published on March 7 2004 by Carolyn Nye
5.0 out of 5 stars Easy, Good, & did I mention EASY!
I have fallen in love with this cookbook. Not only does it contain a wide variety of great vegetarian dishes, but it draws from many ethnic cuisines. Read more
Published on Dec 19 2003 by Perry Horner
3.0 out of 5 stars Lives up to its promise
I bought this book because as a busy Mum and new vegetarian I needed some pointers on easy healthy cooking. However, I just didn't find many of the recipes appealing. Read more
Published on April 28 2003 by Shantiananda
5.0 out of 5 stars You need this book
if you work or have children. These are meals that work. They use normal ingredients and taste good. If you are looking for everyday food this is it. Read more
Published on Dec 29 2002 by "barkable2"
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