Terre à Terre: The Vegetarian Cookbook by Amanda Powley

Book Review

Vegetarians, or those cooking for them, who feel left out when it comes to special occasion cookbooks finally have a volume to call our own. Terre à Terre: The Vegetarian Cookbook features over 100 creative, inspiring, and seductively delicious recipes from the award-winning restaurant in Brighton, England.

Title & Publisher: Terre à Terre: The Vegetarian Cookbook by Amanda Powley with Philip Taylor, photography by Lisa Barber. Published by Absolute Press, 2010.

Terre à Terre is based on the restaurant of the same name in Brighton, England. Founded by chefs Amanda Powley and Philip Taylor in 1993, the restaurant has grown from a modest café into a destination for vegetarians and omnivores alike. The dishes may be elegant but they are also playful and fun. As the chefs write, "meat-free doesn't mean fun-free. A Terre à Terre we passionately believe that vegetarian food is vibrant, exciting and challenging." Ingredients and flavors in the cookbook range from Indian to Mediterranean, Japanese, and South American.

Opening the book for the first time (or the twentieth!), readers will be awed by the beautiful photographs and food styling. Those who aren't accustomed to cooking dishes like this at home might feel intimidated by the presentations and multi-step recipes but we urge you to dive in, learn, and have fun! Although many of the dishes do consist of an extraordinary number of steps, the recipes are actually very clearly written and the assembly instructions make it quite possible to achieve these at home. Just read each recipe thoroughly before starting and give yourself plenty of time.

Along the way, you'll learn new flavor combinations, techniques, and mini-recipes that you can add to your repertoire. The authors encourage experimentation and creativity and the ultimate goal of making "food that you will love to eat," rather than strict adherence to the formula. And with dishes named "It's a Quacker" and "Two Fat Tarts," it's impossible not to enjoy yourself while cooking and eating from this book.

Recipes for right now:
• Dunkin' Doughnuts: parmesan doughnuts rolled in porcini dust, served with chestnut soup with frothy mace bay cream and frozen pear shavings
• Elephant and Rocket Oil Twice Baked Soufflé: twice baked jerusalem artichoke soufflés, wrapped in hazelnut and rosemary parchment pastry, with elephant garlic velouté and rocket oil
• Squish Squash: butternut and pernod terriine with green olive and tarragon hash, ricotta dumplings and lentil, oregano and clove milk
• Spaghetti Sweetie: Chocolate spaghetti served with dark chocolate sauce, sweet walnut pesto, espresso granita and candied kumquats

Recommended? Yes, for both vegetarians and omnivores. There are also several clearly-marked vegan and wheat-free recipes.

Buy it: Terre à Terre: The Vegetarian Cookbook, $25.51 at Amazon

Related: The Modern Vegetarian by Maria Elia

Apartment Therapy Media makes every effort to test and review products fairly and transparently. The views expressed in this review are the personal views of the reviewer and this particular product review was not sponsored or paid for in any way by the manufacturer or an agent working on their behalf. However, the manufacturer did give us the product for testing and review purposes.

(Images: Absolute Press; Lisa Barber)