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The Modern Vegetarian Kitchen Hardcover – Sep 2000

5.0 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 464 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Canada / Non-Fiction; 1 edition (September 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060392959
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060392956
  • Product Dimensions: 18.7 x 3.2 x 23.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 998 g
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #239,500 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From Amazon

Peter Berley was introduced to macrobiotic cooking by a Japanese acupuncturist during the 1970s. His appreciation for this new and, at that time, slightly radical way of eating and cooking led to a career as a vegetarian chef. Berley started simply, hosting small dinner clubs; by 1992, he was executive chef at a strictly vegan restaurant in New York, Angelica Kitchen. In his first cookbook, Berley shares unique color and flavor combinations to demonstrate both the visual and toothsome possibilities of creative vegetarian cooking. But at the heart are the staples. A chapter on salads lists dishes by season--to encourage the reader to take advantage of seasonal fruits and vegetables. An assortment of bean recipes provides imaginative uses for chickpeas, white beans, black beans, and lentils. Bread recipes are complemented by a variety of tapenades, pestos, and herbed oils. Desserts include the expected pumpkin pie but also temptations such as Pear-Cranberry Crisp and Chocolate Mousse. Through it all, Berley proves that eating the vegetarian way can offer as much in cuisine as it does in health. --Teresa Simanton

From Publishers Weekly

A chef for seven years at the Angelica Kitchen, New York City's hip vegan restaurant, Berley focuses on how the act of cooking can nourish one's life in this (mostly) vegan cookbook. Emphasizing home-cooked meals as opposed to gourmet feasts, Berley articulates the principles and techniques behind each recipe. Based on fresh and seasonally available ingredients, the cookbook reads like a valentine to Berley's grandmother, who cooked and baked using foods from her organic garden. Although dashi, miso and tofu are becoming more familiar to American cooks, other ingredients he calls for, such as spelt, kombu and nabe mono, aren't as well known. It's impossible to appreciate Berley's world without making several special shopping tripsAthere's always that one ingredient you can't get at the grocery store. Berley includes instructions for broths, roll pastas and bake breads using "wild" yeast. Following his recipes to the letter requires tremendous amounts of time, as well as patience. But his recipes reward: Roasted Red Peppers are sweeter and more luscious than anything bottled, Basil-Almond Pesto is sublime for having freshly peeled almonds, and Corn and Vegetable Chowder evokes a perfect summer afternoon. For vegans, vegetarians and interested cooks seeking to explore seasonal vegetarian cuisine, this book is a must have. Illustrations not seen by PW.
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I am a non-vegetarian living in a co-op that requires all shared meals to be vegetarian. I found this book on sale at Sur La Table, and bought it to provide me with more ideas for the dinners I cook for my house. After the first few meals that I made that included 2-3 different recipes from this book, it quickly became my FAVORITE cookbook (all genres). I now select this book more often than any other for my house and other dinner parties with non-vegetarian friends. The flavors are rich, the combinations are unique and work very well, and the instructions are easy to follow and provide you with all the info you need, even if you're not a seasoned macrobiotic chef. I give this book a HUGE "thumbs up"! (Some favorites: Creamy Garlic Miso Salad Dressing, Three Sisters Stew (beans, corn dumplings, and winter squash with toasted pumpkin seeds), Eggplant and Seitan Falafel).
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By A. Soares TOP 500 REVIEWER on March 21 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is a fantastic resource, covering a vast breath of vegetables. There are a lot of recipes in here and all that I have tried have been delicious (except the seitan which I tried to make years ago), but I find myself using this book more as a learning tool for how to work with unfamiliar ingredients, than as a recipe resource. Its perfect for when you have vegetables in the fridge and are not quite sure what to do with them (tons of ideas here). Also included in this book is an extensive introduction to kitchen tools and pantry itens. I also highly recommend Peter's follow-up Fresh Food Fast.

I bought this years ago and its appeal has never faded. It is not the most used book on my shelf, but it is perhaps the best resource. Content is still relevant years after its publication. Last week, I received some artichokes in my CSA box and found myself reaching for this for some good ideas.

If you only buy one vegetarian cookbook, this may be the one to get. It is certainly the most comprehensive!
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Format: Hardcover
Peter Berley's book is an extremely informative, accurate and thorough body of work. At a time when the market is overrun with so many bogus coookbooks, Peter's book stands apart as a "must have" for any Kitchen library. Peter treats Vegetarian and Vegan Cuisine with the respect and reverence it deserves. Like the title denotes, everything about this work is Modern: from it's slick packaging and easy-to-read text, to its no-nonsense prose and enlightened cooking techniques. Berley's book is more than just a collection of incredible recipes; it is a "how-to" guide on cooking that will appeal to established, professional chefs as well as the "weekend kitchen warrior". I am sure that it will serve as a milestone work for Vegetarians and Vegans, but should also impress even the most non-repentent of carnivores. For Vegetarian Chefs it is almost on par with, dare I say, Saulnier's Le Repertoire de La Cuisine. I consider myself qualified enough to make these comments because I worked under Peter Berley for 2 years and I have personally cooked, tested, tasted, experimented with and ingested just about everything in the book. It is a SLAM DUNK!
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Format: Hardcover
As someone who is not trained but is also not afraid to spend the day in the kitchen attempting to make something good or learn some new chemistry techniques along the way this book was a perfect fit. I basically read it straight through as a textbook. There is a very informative intro to each chapter that provides some background info as well as information on techniques and ingredients. There are very few general public kitchen books that have given me this amount of useful information in such little time. I imagine it would be great for vegetarian cooking class. For example you learn how to make your own seitan as well as create a starter for making your sourdough bread. The recipes are all keepers and probably worth the price alone. I'm eating the summer miso now, had some carmelized fennel earlier and just finished a batch of the refried beans which will last me all week. Everything i've made so far i'll keep making over and over again.
My only issue with the book is the index should be more fleshed out. There is nothing worse than trying to find something in a cookbook with chipotle paste all over your hands. #;@]
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Format: Hardcover
If you are fortunate enough to have tasted Peter Berley's masterful creations at New York's Angelica Kitchen, then this book will enable you to step into the chef's shoes and create hundreds of them on your own.
If you've never been to Angelica Kitchen (now or during the 7 years when Peter was executive chef), then this book will be a revelation -- a truly inspired, lucid, and masterful handbook for preparing what is arguably the best-tasting, healthiest cuisine in the world.
While many vegetarian cookbooks (and most vegetarian restaurants) seem stuck in a 1970's time-warp, Peter has created a cuisine which is truly modern, because it is so far ahead of most anything currently practiced -- yet at the same time is accessible, sensible, and practical.
The Modern Vegetarian Kitchen is a must-have for any level of cooking skill, and for any kitchen (vegan, vegetarian or not).
My only regret is that Amazon's rating system has a maximum of 5 stars.
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