A Cookbook With Lots to Love

By Elena Epstein

recipe“Love Real Food,” by Kathryne Taylor, is a vegetarian cookbook that’s all about simple, flavorful and wholesome cooking. Taylor is the creator of the popular vegetarian blog, Cookie + Kate. In her debut cookbook, she brings us her 100 feel-good favorites.

The book is a visual delight, with gorgeous photos of Taylor’s food creations and sweet cameos from her adorable and crumb catching dog, Cookie. Throughout the book, Taylor offers adaptations for special diets, plus cooking tips and flavor boosters.

The book is divided into seven chapters and recipes range from morning favorites such as fluffy cinnamon-oat pancakes and trail mix granola bites to a variety of salads such as Thai mango slaw and arugula and wild rice salad. The soup chapter includes lentil minestrone and creamy roasted cauliflower and main dishes include quinoa-stuffed sweet potatoes and burrito bowls. There is even a fun Happy Hour section with appetizers, snacks and cocktails such as fresh sesame soba spring rolls with peanut dipping sauce, hibiscus pink lemonade and strawberry rose sangria.

Pre-order the book, coming May 16, at Love Real Food.

Roasted Strawberry, Basil, and Goat Cheese Crostini from “Love Real Food”

recipeIf you haven’t experienced roasted strawberries yet, you’ve been missing out—they’re sweet and jammy, like the inside of a strawberry pie. Roasted strawberries collide with tangy goat cheese and fresh basil to create this simple and sophisticated summertime appetizer. You could also serve these with a big green salad for a light summer meal.

Makes about 2 dozen crostini

4 to 5 ounces goat cheese

1 pound strawberries, hulled and cut into bite-size pieces

2 tablespoons honey

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 whole-grain baguette or small loaf of crusty whole-grain bread (about 14 ounces), cut into ½-inch slices

Small handful of fresh basil leaves, torn into little pieces

Freshly ground black pepper

Tip: If you don’t love goat cheese, alternatives include mascarpone, cream cheese, or ricotta.

Preheat the oven to 350°F with racks in the middle and upper third of the oven. Line two large, rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper for easier cleanup. Set the goat cheese on the counter to soften up a bit.

On one baking sheet, toss the strawberries with the honey, then spread the strawberries into a single layer. Bake on the upper rack until the fruit is tender, juicy, and collapsing on itself, 20 to 25 minutes, tossing halfway. Watch the fruit on the edges of the pan, as the honey can burn quickly.

Meanwhile, on the remaining baking sheet, brush the olive oil lightly over both sides of each slice of bread. Bake on the middle rack until the toasts are golden on top, 10 to 12 minutes.

Once the toasts are cool enough to safely handle, top each one with a smear of goat cheese, followed by a spoonful of roasted strawberries and their juices. Finish off the crostini with a sprinkling of torn basil and black pepper. Crostini are best served immediately.

 

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