Let's Go Nuts: 80 Vegan Recipes with Nuts and Seeds
“The recipes in Let’s Go Nuts: 80 Vegan Recipes with Nuts and Seeds take the home cook on a seasonal culinary journey and are an essential guide for anyone wanting to learn how to incorporate more nuts and seeds into their diet.”
Nutritionist and cookbook author, Estella Schweizer, is crazy about nuts and has penned a book appropriately titled: Let’s Go Nuts: 80 Vegan Recipes with Nuts and Seeds.
Schweizer authored the book because “I’m so passionate about maximizing the potential of nuts in cooking, this book aims to coax them out of the shadows and into the limelight. Along with their healthy properties, nuts possess exceptional texture and flavor that will improve your meals.”
Nuts can be prepared by soaking, fermenting, roasting (and chopping), and making various nut butters.
The book has basic recipes for nut milks and their products along with dressings, marinades, and sauces. The recipes take the home cook on a seasonal culinary journey and are an essential guide for anyone wanting to incorporate more nuts and seeds into their diet. The book is a tasty blend of nutrition, information, and delicious recipes featuring nuts (though some are legumes like the peanut) and seeds.
Nuts are chockful of minerals, trace elements, B-complex vitamins, and vitamin E. Nuts also contain monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids which help regulate fatty acid metabolism and lower cholesterol. Other benefits of eating (or cooking with) nuts include prevention of arteriosclerotic plaque in blood vessels as well as protecting the heart’s arterial walls. Nuts also help in maintaining healthy weight levels because the fat contained in nuts cannot be easily absorbed by the body as energy (as opposed to fats in oil and processed foods).
Schweizer is concerned about where the nuts and seeds are grown and recommends buying and consuming organic nuts.
“I still very much prefer organic produce for reasons relating to soil health, to avoid pollution and pesticide residues, and to do something good for our environment.”
Schweizer likes to eat, seasonally buying most of her produce from local farmers markets, and so the book reflects her preferences and is divided into the four seasons.
Whether the home cook wants to try a hand at making Nut Parmesan, Almond Ricotta, or Mozzarella (with Psyllium Husks or Tapioca Starch), Schweizer has you covered.
Salad dressing, mayonnaise, orange sauce, and bechamel sauce are also explained in the Basic Recipes section.
Spring is a season of awakening and Schweizer has a number of recipes that will surely awaken a cook’s senses. Recipes such as Double Radish with Green Polenta or Oven-baked Asparagus with Mango and Peanut Salsa make use of spring vegetables.
In between the recipes, Schweizer has included detailed information about nuts. Cashews are not really nuts but a type of stone fruit and belong to the sumac family. Each cashew kernel grows individually on a thick pedicel called a cashew apple and resembles an inverted red bell pepper in shape. When the kernel is ripe, it turns a golden orange or red color and has an intense fruity fragrance. Cashew nut is a hard kidney-shaped “nut” that surrounds the kernel. The skin of the cashew is an irritant so peeling them is a labor-intense process. This “nut” has a sweet and mild flavor and is used in nut milk and for making vegan cakes, mousses, and other desserts.
Summer is a time for a variety of flavorful and colorful produce and the recipes reflect the warmth of the season. Stuffed Zucchini Flowers with Macadamia and Cashew Ricotta, Millet Risotto with Artichokes, and Nice Cream Berry Bowl are a few mouthwatering selections.
Autumn brings the first hint of cool weather. Recipes like Nutcracker Granola, Spiced Oat and Hemp Seed Bread, and Pumpkin Spread with Brazil Nuts will tempt and tantalize the home cook.
Winter calls for comfort and hearty foods. Recipes such as Corn Chowder with Eggplant-wrapped Dates, Baked Squash Rounds with a Green Salsa, and Christmas Flan with Plums in Port highlight winter produce.
The book has a section on seeds and how to use the different varieties. Cooks can also learn how to stock a pantry by peeking into Schweizer’s own pantry.
The recipes are easy and unfussy. Each one has a prep time which will help in planning a menu. The bright, beautiful photographs by Winfried Heinze capture the home cook’s eye and imagination.