Raw or cooked ratatouille from Choosing Raw

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Raw ratatouille

Have you ever met someone who instantly impressed you with their remarkable knowledge and genuine charisma? That’s how I felt when I first met Gena Hamshaw. She’s the brilliant writer behind the blog Choosing Raw who constantly amazes me with her thought-provoking blog posts and now, her comprehensive new book of the same name.

This book is far more than just a cookbook. Using her familiar writing style that is both casual and professional, Gena first introduces us to her own story—growing up in a Greek American home, her experiences with an eating disorder and IBS, and through her discovery of the benefits of a vegan lifestyle and nutrient-dense raw foods. Her story is both captivating and candid, and you learn how she grew to become the experienced health advocate she is today.

Roasted red pepper dip & a Canada Day giveaway!

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I consider myself a dip girl.

There isn’t a week that goes by when I’m not peeling carrots or slicing cucumber to use only as a vehicle for scooping up salsa, homemade bean dip or, when in a pinch, my favorite store-bought hummus. These dips add the right amount of pizzaz when spooned on top of salad bowls or spread across lunch wraps, too. With my love of all things dippy, let’s just say my food processor has had it’s fair share of work over the years.

But let’s be real. One can only eat so much bean dip, which is why I decided to change things up a bit with this roasted red pepper dip. It’s a super simple recipe that can be made in mere minutes in your food processor. I took the easy way out and used jarred roasted red peppers, but feel free to roast your own if you’ve got the time and inclination. The coconut milk adds just the right amount of creaminess without being overly coconutty, and the lime juice and cilantro add a Mexican twist.

The China Study All-Star Collection review & giveaway

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May 6th is the release date of the latest cookbook from The China Study series—The China Study All-Star Collection by LeAnne Campbell. I’m particularly excited about this book because I got to be a (very) small part of it! My photos are showcased alongside Dreena Burton’s delicious and nutritious recipes, like the gingerbread granola you see below, which is by far one of the best granola recipes I’ve ever tasted (it’s on page 28, hint hint).

The collection also includes recipes from other top chefs and leaders within the health-focused, plant-based community:

25 vegan Easter recipes everyone will love

The Easter long weekend is upon us and I’m sure many of you have family gatherings and big meals to prepare. We’re planning for a day at my brother- and sister-in-law’s house, and I’m happy to report this year’s meal is going to be meat-free! (I’d like to think I was a small influence in that decision, since I’m the lone vegan in the family.)

I’m so excited, not only because of the plant-based focus but also because Easter means the big family holiday that ushers in spring, with fresh produce and handmade goodies from the farmer’s market, colourful spring appetizers, lively spring salads and light, fruity desserts—and chocolate, of course. Although there’s snow falling in southern Ontario (in April!), I’ve been happily dreaming up springtime dishes to take on Saturday. Here are some of the wonderful vegan recipes I have in mind.

BRUNCH

 gluten-free strawberry shortcake pancakes

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6 e-cookbooks I’m loving right now

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Since the beginning of my vegan culinary adventures—ahem, shortly before I started this blog (before that I didn’t cook)—I’ve spent countless hours poring over cookbooks. I’d check them out from libraries, sit on the floor in front of the tiny (but growing) vegan section of Indigo, and ordered them from Amazon (free shipping over $25!) like a crazy person.

But then came the wave of ebooks, produced with love by bloggers around the world. Who needs a giant publisher when you can self-publish your own?

Here’s the thing about ebooks: Some of them aren’t so great. But oh! Some of them are really, really good. To me, a well-written, well-thought-out book makes all the difference. Including lots of photographs and recipes that have been edited and proofread are also key to a successful ebook. I want to make sure you get the good ones, which is why I’ve pulled together this list of my Top 6 vegan ebooks.