All, Food

Review: The Oh She Glows Cookbook

Today I will be reviewing a cookbook that every vegan in the world should own: The Oh She Glows Cookbook by Angela Liddon. If you are not familiar with this cookbook, you might know Angela from her famous blog that shares the same name: Oh She Glows. The blog and the cookbook focus on healthy vegan wholesome foods. I’ve had this book for about a month now and after trying thirteen recipes, I am ready to give my opinion about it. The good and the bad, here we go.

The first thing I noticed about the book were the mouthwatering pictures. Angela took these pictures herself and she has a way of making food looking great. The pictures are very diverse and the compositions are spot on. I love the fact that she took the pictures of the food herself, following the same style and feel of her blog.

There are a few pictures in the book that I am pretty sure she didn’t take herself though. I am talking about the overly posed pictures of her and her husband (for an example see picture below). I don’t really see the function of these pictures in the book and would love to see them replaced by some real pictures of Angela and her family enjoying her food together.

The book starts off with the story of Angela’s journey to health. Very interesting and definitely an added value to the book. After the introduction, there is a short chapter ‘about this book‘ with all the basic information you need to know about the book. The next chapter is called ‘my natural foods pantry‘ and talks about ways to build your own pantry. This chapter also gives basic information about the ingredients most used in the recipes. Very interesting for everyone who is not an expert in this area just yet. She also talks about her ‘favorite kitchen tools & equipment, covering all the tools you will need in your kitchen to be able to make the recipes in the book.

After reading (or for some people skipping) the introductory chapters, you can get to the good stuff: the recipes. The recipes are divided into ten chapters: ‘breakfast’, ‘smoothies, juice & tea’, ‘appetizers’, ‘salads’, ‘soup’, ‘entrées’, ‘sides’, ‘power snacks’, ‘desserts’ and ‘homemade staples’. In most of the recipes vegetables and/or fruits play a central role. If  you are not used to cooking with ingredients like chia seeds, hemp seeds, nutritional yeast, tahini and agave nectar, you might have to take a few extra trips to specialty food shops. Other than that, most of the ingredients are realistic and pretty easy to get your hands on.

These are the recipes that I have tried so far:

  • Effortless vegan overnight oats: Good basic recipe if you are struggling with the milk-to-oats ratio of your overnight oats. With the exception of chia seeds, there is nothing overly exciting about this recipe.
  • Life-affirming warm nacho dip (find recipe here): I made this recipe three times now. Once for myself (why can’t nachos + warm dip make for a nice dinner huh?) and twice for a dinner party. I loved this recipe. The flavors are unique and delicious. I loved the experience of sitting together with a group of people around a steaming hot dish, all trying to get a bit of the stuff on our nachos.
  • Broccoli & cashew cheese-quinoa burrito: This dish took me by surprise. The texture and taste just weren’t what I was expecting. The end result was rather sticky and cheesy indeed. I really liked it though and will be making this again.
  • Quick & easy chana masala (find recipe here): In this recipe you combine tomato sauce, chickpeas and a bunch of herbs with basamati rice. Easy as a coconut and so flavorful. One of my favorite recipes of the book and one that I have made several times.
  • Grilled portobello burger with sun-dried tomato kale-hemp pesto (find recipe here): I really liked this burger although I thought the final product was a little too acidic. If I make this again, I will be reducing the amounts of balsamic vinegar and lemon juice.
  • 15-minute creamy avocado pasta (find recipe here): I though this recipe was good in terms of flavor but a little too dry overall. I also felt like some sun-dried tomatoes or marinated mushrooms could have made the dish a little more exciting and would have added more diversity in terms of texture.
  • Luxurious tomato-basil pasta (find recipe here): Preparing this dish made my mouth water like crazy. The taste was great as well and making this was fairly simple. I ended up adding some more oil in the end since I found the dish a little too dry. Will be making this one again!
  • Creamy vegetable curry (find recipe here): Mmmm… This was one of the first recipes I’ve tried from the book and it is still my favorite. It was flavorful, hearty, hot, filling, and a pleasure to prepare. If I had a restaurant, I would put this dish on the menu for sure!
  • Marinated Italian mushrooms: Being a total sucker for mushrooms, I had to try this recipe. It did not disappoint. These balsamic, garlic and parsley flavored mushrooms were so good that I wanted to drink the remaining juice. Is that creepy? I made these for a dinner party as well and they went like hot buns.
  • Mighty chia pudding parfait (find recipe here): I made this recipe because I hadn’t delved into the chia pudding hype yet and felt a bit left out. I liked this dish but thought it was a little too basic and boring to be featured in this  otherwise exciting book.
  • Homemade yolos (find recipe here): These are little salted peanut butter, date and banana filled balls that are covered in a layer of chocolate. They were amazing. I made them several times now and will be making them again. Man they taste good!
  • Easy mushroom gravy: This was a quick and easy recipe. It was like a short-cut for the usual mushroom gravy that needs to simmer for like twenty minutes. I thought this tasted good. Not great, but good enough to make again.
  • Magical chia seed jam: I love the jam that this four ingredient recipe created. I can’t wait to make this again using more unusual fruits like peach, pineapple and banana.

Writing about all of these recipes makes me feel nostalgic. I definitely think that I would be happy to survive for a few months eating only recipes from this cookbook. Since there are so many little dishes, like appetizers, salads and side dishes, it is easy to combine recipes and create a diverse plate of food that fills all of your needs. I do feel like some of the recipes in the book are a little too simple though, like almond flour, oat flour, pressed tofu and balsamic reduction. I mean, do we really need a recipe to simply blend oats?? Considering this, the statement on the cover saying ‘over 100 recipes’ might be a bit of a stretch…

If you are curious about this cookbook, I would suggest that you try a few of the recipes. You can find a few links to recipes in my post or you can check out the Oh She Glows blog, an endless pit of amazing recipes free of any charge. If you are like me, and feel the need to have an overview of the recipes in the form of a beautiful book than this is one for you. It is one of my favorite, if not my favorite cookbook of the moment (and I have gathered quite the collection over the past few months, so that is saying something). The pictures are beautiful, the instructions are clear, the recipes are healthy and delicious and making the recipes teaches you a lot about flavor combining. I can’t wait for the next Oh She Glows Cookbook!

You can buy The Oh She Glows Cookbook here for 23,00 EUR.

 

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