About Me

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Concord, California, United States
I am a sometimes-writer, everyday mama, creative failure and experimental cook. I am interested in living a beautiful life, spending time with my family and making things that I can feel proud of. When I'm by myself I'm usually outside. Don't bother calling because chances are that I didn't bring my cell phone because I couldn't find it. If you see me walking, it's because I lost my keys and if you see me with only one child... I'm probably in big trouble.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Review Teaser: The Market Vegan

On August 8th The Rocky Holler Picture Show will be holding a giveaway and reviewing a new, vegan cookbook called The Market Vegan by Laura Gesin.

My review will be comprised of three parts:

1.) Organization

2.) Creativity

3) Recipe ease and user friendliness

In the meantime, I'll be on vacation in Naples, Florida with my children (visiting my parents) and trying different recipes from the book, taking lots of pictures and getting honest eater feedback from my family.  My family, except my father, who might actually be allergic to foods that do not contain massive amounts of animal products and/or HFCS (with the exception of peas.  I think that he DOES he peas).

These are the recipes that I'm going to make!  Mom, if you're reading this, prepare your pallet. 

For my appetizer, I chose stuffed mushrooms, which are something that I grew up eating and love.  They are my go-to for holidays and I'm always looking for a recipe that beats the one I have.  Store bought stuffed mushrooms can be pretty dodgy, so I'm hoping that this recipe is good.

There are a few soup recipes in The Market Vegan cookbook, and they all looked tasty.  I decided to try out the potato leek soup because it seemed like something that both my children and parents would eat (again, when I say "parents" I do not mean my dad.)  When I skimmed the recipe I noticed that it seemed "lighter" than most potato leek soups, which can be rather dense.  I'm interested to see what it tastes like.

I considered making two main course dishes that would compliment each other, but have decided to try a couple of contrasting recipes.

First, I'm going to make the vegan chili (just because it sounds so dang good) and then I'm going to try the eggplant and italian bread lasagna.  This will likely be the toughest for me to review.  I happen to make my own eggplant lasagna and really pride myself on how delicious it is.  It's something that my children love and is a favorite in my home, so I've set the bar pretty high.  If my family likes this, it will be more meaningful than some of the other recipes that I'm dabbling in (like chili) but have never made before.  I'm excited to try a new recipe (which is much different than mine) and to see if I'll be replacing my tried and true eggplant lasagna.

But, friends, because of the way that I am wired, the course that I am the most excited to make and review is DESSERT!  I will be making a peanut butter pie with vegan whipped cream!  This recipe is unlike anything that I have ever seen and, I believe, has the potential to be AMAZING!  I really hope that it is, because there is little that I love more than peanut butter in my dessert foods.  Holy smokes.  I CAN. NOT.  WAIT!!!!

And, of course, we'll need something to wash down all of these (projected) delicious treats.  You all know that Sangria is my favorite thing, right!  Well, there's a fancy vegan white sangria recipe in The Market Vegan and I'm looking forward to sitting by the pool and sipping a glass of it with my mom!

I leave for Florida on July 28th and will be back on August 15th.  I will definitely have a post up on August 8th that reviews The Market Vegan. I look forward to making all of these recipes and giving you an honest review of them.

If you like what you see and would like to be entered into the giveaway and become eligible to win a copy of The Market Vegan, please leave a comment stating the recipe that you are the most interesting in reading a review of.   You can leave a comment on this post and/or my August 8th post.  You can enter  more than once.  Each comment counts as an entry.  I will choose a winner when I return from vacation on August 15th.  


  1. The peanut butter pie with vegan whipped cream sounds amazing! I'm always a little wary of vegan substitutes like whipped cream so I'd be very interested to hear how this one turns out.

  2. Since I know what a great cook you are I want to know how the lasagna turns out.

  3. White sangria all the way :)

  4. Ok, I have no idea why it thinks I am Will...this is Amy (aka Mamagrouch)

  5. Hey Anna! I can't pick one. I can't wait to hear about the sangria AND peanut butter pie.

  6. peanut butter pie cause I really wanna know all about the vegan whipped cream.

  7. Hey Guys! I'm so excited to make all of these treats. Laura, I'm wondering about that whipped cream. It's made with tofu and should be interesting. I know that a lot of people use tofu for smoothies, but I generally only use it in savory dishes. I hope that it's delicious!!!!

  8. The eggplant lasagna sounds really interesting. My hubby says that, besides me and cheesecake, the only thing that can give him a stiffy is eggplant. LOL! I make a killer eggplant parm so I'm interested to see what the lasagna is all about.

  9. I so very much love stuffed mushrooms so that's what I'm excited about! So sorry your Dad only does peas...he's surely missing out!
    Have a great vacation! :)