British food guru Amanda Grant offers over 140 vegan recipes in Fresh and Fast Vegan, the reissued version of her classic vegan cookbook The New Vegan. The vegan diet and lifestyle have grown considerably in popularity since the last time this book was issued. In it, Grant offers recipes that are perfect for those just dipping a toe into the vegan lifestyle, although experienced vegan cooks may also enjoy some of the international recipes offered here.
Fresh and Fast Vegan includes sections on starters, snacks and party food, main courses, and desserts. Most of the recipes are surprisingly simple and fast, true to the name of the book. Dishes ranging from “Rich Mushrooms on Toast with Truffle Oil”, “Spanish Potato Gratin”, “Crunchy Banked Tomatoes with Lime, Onion and Chili”, “Bright Red Pepper Pesto Linguine” (made here with hazelnuts), are all quite delicious and easily prepared. Most recipes here are health-conscious and fresh with a restrained use of ingredients. However, the author doesn’t shy away from offering a few deep-fried dishes like Pakoras. The desserts, too, range from the artfully simple to the decadent.
A brief description or serving suggestion, and nutrition information accompanies each recipe. I always enjoy reading cookbooks, especially those that highlight cuisines with which I am not familiar. I wish the author had included more information about ethnic foods, such as which country or part of the world they come from, and how she has adapted traditional recipes for her use. There are no illustrations in the book, but for the price and the number of excellent recipes provided, this book simply can’t be beat. It belongs on the kitchen shelf of anyone who has even a passing interest in quickly and easily prepared healthy food.