Cookbook Review: But My Family Would Never Eat Vegan!

I was super excited to hear that Kristy Turner, author of the Keepin’ It Kind blog, was releasing this book. I only very recently acquired But I Could Never Go Vegan! and the first time I flipped through it (it was a library copy) I asked myself why I do not have it on my shelf. So I pre-ordered BMFWNEV! as soon as I heard about it.

The book is broken down in to chapters with funny-sad-but-true family scenarios, like “my kids think vegan food is weird”, “the in-laws will just add this to their list of my faults” and “Uncle John thinks his comfort food is better than mine… and won’t shut up about it”. The opening chapter covers staples and pantry ingredients and how to cook grains.

I’ve really enjoyed cooking from BMFWNEV! and there are loads more recipes I have bookmarked.

By far, my favourite so far has been the Tater Totchos. Made with Tater Tots (called potato gems or potato royals in Australia), these are topped with a fantastic beans recipe and a nacho cheese sauce that uses potato and tahini (no cashew, woohoo!). Now I don’t really like potato gems at all and prefer to steer clear of this oily processed delight. So the first time I made the Tater Totchos, I used plain boiled potatos. The second time I decided what the hell, let’s go with the potato gems. I’m glad I did, because I loved it:

I have been struggling for yeaaars to make a home made burger that the kids (or at least one of them) will like. My twelve year old really liked these Double-Double Cheeseburger patties and for that alone I am happy to have bought the book. Made with lentils, mushroom and oats (plus other stuff), these are a winner with the hint of smoked paprika. The second time I made these, I added in shredded kale. Next time I’ll include some finely grated carrot, just to sneak more veggies in.

The burger photo above was taken when my sister and her partner came over and they loved the burgers too. I made the Deviled Potato Salad to go along with it. I’ve never really been in to potato salad but this was tasty and simple to make, though I used silken tofu in place of vegan mayo. The use of black salt really takes these potatoes up a notch:

The Chickenless Salad Sandwich was made because I had to use up some tofu. Now I will confess that when I took the tofu out of the oven and tried it, I was a little disappointed. But you guys, once it was added to the mayo combination I couldn’t stop eating it. I made this to take to a BBQ picnic (I just chopped up some salad greens and tomatoes) and it disappeared straight away:

The Lemongrass Tofu Banh Mi recipe was another winner, specifically for the tofu bit. I baked the tofu, which made the lemongrass marinade go a little crispy.

I did have it assembled properly in a baguette that looked very banh mi, but stumbled as I was going to take the photo, banging the plate and everything just fell all over the place. That was the last of the baguette too, so I had to make do with plain bread buns for my photo:

When you buy leeks to make a recipe but never get around to it, there’s always leek and potato soup. The recipe in the book has nice subtle flavours of garlic, rosemary, thyme and sage:

The Maple-Peanut Butter Pancakes were pretty good, though I did add a little peanut butter powder and some extra baking powder. The batter tasted far more peanutty than the pancakes! These were really good too, I wish I’d made a nice peanut caramel kind of sauce, but maple syrup was good enough:

The Mushroom Kale Skillet Hash was another winner. Always good to use up the Old Bay Seasoning!

The Mexican Pizza with 15-Minute Refired Beans was another favourite. WHY don’t my kids eat stuff like this? Oh well, more for me:

Finally, the Hidden Veggie Mac n Cheese. Arggghhhh if my kids ate meals like this, life would be so much easier around here. It was a no-go for the kids, which sucked really, because the sauce is made with beans, cauliflower and carrot– the sort of stuff I want them to be eating. I liked it, especially the Pepita Parmesan on top.  The recipe makes a huge amount of sauce:

Other recipes I tried (no photos):

PB&J Rollups: a peanut butter spread made with silken tofu, spread on wraps and topped with sliced strawberries or bananas. I soooo wanted the kids to like these as it makes for a quick easy snack, but nooooooooo. Argh.

Skillet Cornbread: another one I liked but not a winner for the kids. If I make it again, I’d add some more liquidy ingredient as it was a bit crumbly.

Blueberry Banana Muffins: the kids liked these so I’d make them again, though they were a little dry (this always happens when I cook with oat flour). I’ll just increase the banana next time.

Shiitake Stroganoff: nice, but whenever I use silken tofu as the base for a pasta sauce, I can taste tofu (not what I want in a pasta dish). Still, I prefer it over dishes that use cashews as the sauce base!

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies: these were more pillowy cookies than crunchy and while I prefer my peanut butter cookies to be on the crunchy side, these were still a nice snack.

Artichoke Kale Hummus: definitely one for kale lovers! I’m not a huge kale fan, I eat it because It’s Good For You, so I found the kale after taste in this a little strong.

Maple-Miso Tempeh Cutlets: okay so I really don’t like tempeh, but the marinade on this is really nice. I have some in the fridge and I’m forcing myself to like tempeh– this recipe is helping!

Overall, I really love this book. The photos are gorgeous and the intros are funny. I have way more recipes bookmarked to try and will probably end up doing a part 2 review!