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Book Review: Appetite for Reduction

Posted Jan 10 2011 1:42pm
From January 2011

As always, I am a fan of all books written by Isa Chandra Moskowitz, and Appetite for Reduction is no exception. In fact, it's my new favorite. Like many of us who blog about food, Isa admits to having put on a few pounds, especially during the writing and testing of her cookie and cupcake books (written with Terry Hope Romero). Consequently, she wrote a low-fat vegan cookbook.

For my review, I selected two recipes that were (as advertised) very quick and easy to make. First, I made the Scallion Potato Pancakes. I made two more pancakes (had slightly more potatoes on hand) than the yield listed in the book, but didn't change anything otherwise. I enjoyed them greatly with an agave-mustard dipping sauce that fit the bill exactly. When I tasted the pancakes without the sauce, they needed a little salt. But otherwise, I was very happy with the result.



The second recipe, Garlicky Mushrooms & Kale, was a huge success. I've long sauteed kale with olive oil and garlic, but hadn't yet added mushrooms. I swapped portobello mushrooms for the creminis, but otherwise stayed loyal to the recipe. It was very garlicky and tasty. I'd probably opt for adding some hot pepper seeds for more zip next time, or some fresh ginger.

Both delicious recipes were very low in fat, but very high in flavor. One of the great additions to Appetite for Reduction is the use of the nutritional information accompanying the recipes. I especially like the vitamin and mineral percentages. Although they don't include many, they do count Vitamins A and C as well as calcium and iron. You don't often see those in cookbooks.

I would like more photos, but I can understand the costs of publishing prohibit the use of many photos if you want to keep the price low (which it is at $11.42 on Amazon). Last, but not least, one of my biggest pet peeves is when recipes run onto the next page and I must flip the page for more directions. Both recipes ran over into the next pages, so I'll just say that I hope the designers can work on that issue for the next book.

I've requested permission to reprint the recipes, so if I get it, I'll update this posting with them.
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