Friday, February 4, 2011

Foodie Friday: FF turns 1 (plus a birthday giveaway)

It's Foodie Friday! Foodie Friday is my weekly feature that gives you a window into my kitchen. I love to cook, I love to eat, I love to read cookbooks, and I love to inspire people to give vegan food a chance. Thus, Foodie Friday was whipped up and baked to perfection.
Has it really already been a year since I wrote my first Foodie Friday post? The calendar says yes, and my waistline agrees. it has been a year of expanding my palate, my pantry, and yes, my pants. Although I'm trying to work on that last one a bit, most of the expansion has been for the better. I've worked with new-to-me ingredients, I've learned how to use new kitchen tools, and I've become an overall more well-rounded cook.

To celebrate Foodie Friday's first birthday, I made some tasty treats from two recently-published books by my favorite cookbook author, Robin Robertson. The books were graciously provided to me by their publisher, John Wiley & Sons, which offers a wide variety of culinary and hospitality titles, including three of Robin Robertson's cookbooks. The two that I consulted for this bloggy shindig are Party Vegan and Vegan on the Cheap.


Both books are exactly what they sound like. Party Vegan features 25 different menus for holidays, special events, ethnic-themed meals, and just because gatherings--this month, the Super Bowl party and the Valentine's dinner for two menus would come in handy if I had anyone other than myself to entertain (and heck, being alone is not a good reason not to treat oneself, so I'll probably make myself something). Inexperienced and veteran party throwers alike will benefit from the planning guides and timelines included at the beginning of the book. Having worked as a chef and caterer for many years, Robin knows her stuff!

Vegan on the Cheap is your guide to vegan cooking on a budget. It makes use of simple, affordable ingredients without downsizing on taste or quality. If you thought that being vegan required splurging on fancy foodstuffs, step into Professor Robin's classroom, because you're about to get schooled. The book starts out with a section of cooking, shopping, and living tips, and includes a list of staples to always have on hand, as well as instructions on how to make some of the basics right at home. Each recipe costs no more than $2 per serving, and some include a "splurge a little" suggestion to try when you have some extra pennies (check the couch).

But enough talk. Words don't sell me on cookbooks and I doubt that it works on any of you, either. For me, seeing is believing, so feast your eyes on our birthday party treats:

chocolate chunk blondies from Party Vegan - I saved a sliver for myself and sent the rest off to my poor deployed husband, who I'm sure will waste no time in devouring them

chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter frosting from Vegan on the Cheap (less than 50 cents per serving) - I inhaled two of these as soon as they were done, and then shared some with my friend, who did the exact same thing

Now you're probably wondering how you, too, can have such delicious, animal-friendly, and affordable vittles at your fingertips. Well, it is a birthday party, after all, so I have gifts! I'm giving away a copy of either Party Vegan or Vegan on the Cheap to two lucky winners. Just leave me a comment below telling me which book you'd like (if you don't specify, I'll be forced to choose for you) and why you're interested in giving vegan food a try (or, if you're already vegan, tell me for how long and why you made the switch).

You also must give me a way to contact you, such as leaving your e-mail address or Twitter username in your comment or having comment replies enabled in Blogger. If I can't contact you, you'll be automatically disqualified. Entries are due by 6 pm ET/3 pm PT on Friday, February 11 and the winners will be announced that night.

I'll use Random.org to select a winner for each book--one book per winner. The chosen two must provide me with a mailing address; I'll be passing it on to my partners in foodie glory at Wiley so that they can mail out your book. If you're not cool with giving me or Wiley your address, please don't enter.

Happy birthday, Foodie Friday! What a nice one-year-old you are, sharing your presents with friends!

27 comments:

Rachel W. said...

Those cupcakes look amazing, which is why I would LOVE the "Vegan on the Cheap" book. I've recently become a vegan and am overwhelmed by the costs of ingredients that some recipes call for, so I'm really on the look out for cheaper alternatives.

Keep up the good work!!

Sabrina said...

I would love Vegan on the Cheap. I lost my job last year, and so we have needed to tighten up the budget living on one salary. A cookbook with tasty, inexpensive vegan meals would be perfect! I became vegan three years ago, and I did it for the animals!

Julie Sheridan said...

I would LOVE Vegan on the Cheap...for obvious reasons! Everyone is watching their money and pinching pennies anywhere they can. PLUS, although my family is vegetarian, I want to make the move to vegan (or at least most-of-the-time vegan). Thanks so much for this opportunity!

Heidi Renée said...

Julie and Sabrina, remember that you must leave me a way to contact you--otherwise your entry is void!

Sabrina said...

Sorry about that, Heidi! I edited my profile so I can be contacted by email.

Teslaca said...

What a great birthday giveaway! I'm not 100% vegan, as I do buy local dairy products, but I'm getting close. I'd love to have Party Vegan so that I can bring delicious dishes to any get togethers. Who knows? I may convert a fan or two of the food. Vegan on the Cheap looks fantastic too. Robin Robertson's books are the best!! I have three, but would love to have them all.

janet said...

What a wonderful giveaway! I'd love to win Party Vegan. I am not vegan but trying to increase my vegan meals - health is my main motivator, but other reasons include low cost, better for the environment, etc. The best part is that I know I don't have to skimp on flavour! I just can't give up fish or milk (so far) to make the vegan plunge.

Matthew said...

That chocolate chunk cookie does look delicious.

I'd like to try Party Vegan, as I already have the other cookbook.

I've been a Vegan (off and on) since 2008, and totally on since early 2009. I made the switch for health and for a less bloodstained diet.

Thanks for the cookbook giveaway!

the V said...

Ooh la la lady! Excellent idea (and Wiley should totally hire you to do the adverts by the way. Very convincing).

While our household isn't vegan, we are both making more of an effort these days to expand our palates (and eat better, healthier and more local with a wider mix of meals and more non-meat options) -- more than anything, I've been helping my veggie friends who are opening their cafe next week, and they are always on the hunt for good recipes to share.

If either is going spare (I'd pick On the Cheap, but I'm sure we'd make good use of what ever you see fit to send!) we'd be delighted - and I'm pretty sure everyone we know would feel the benefit :)

S

Sharen said...

I am a vegetarian and have been one for over 30 years but I eat vegan about 75% of the time because I have found so many fun things to explore and try with vegan recipes. The reason why I stay vegetarian instead of going vegan is that it has always been easier in social settings but I am currently exploring how to be vegan 100% of the time and eat around meat eaters. I would love a copy of Vegan on the Cheap.

Anonymous said...

I would love to have Vegan on the Cheap. I need all the help that I can get on learning to cook with out animal products.
Thank You

Christina

laurelvb said...

How have I missed your blog for an entire year? I really need to clear out some of this brain fog.grin
I went Vegan and GF and Soy free about 3 years ago because I was allergic to everything else. At first I lost a lot of weight but as I continue to experiment with new foods my waistline is expanding as well.
This is a wonderful giveaway. It's great getting presents on other people's birthdays. Robin wrote my favorite cookbook, "Vegan Fire and Spice." I'd love to try her "Party Vegan" if I get that lucky.
laurelvanblarcum at sbcglobal dot net.

Heidi Renée said...

Sharen and Christina, please comment back with a way for me to contact you. Otherwise I can't include you!

Kim said...

Hi its my first time at your blog! Thanks for the giveaway. I love RR's cookbooks and since I already own VOTC I am hoping to win Party Vegan! keden66@aol.com

Marlo said...

Hi, I've been vegan for 5 months now. I started with the vegan 21 day challenge in September. I currently own Vegan on the Cheap which I love to pieces. This book is definitely a must for vegans. I'm hoping to win a copy of Party Vegan so I can show my non vegan friends that it's possible to entertain with a vegan lifestyle. marlo_s_2000@yahoo.con

ilanica said...

I would love vegan on the cheap! I have a couple of Robin's other cookbooks but a more economical option would be just fabulous. You can contact me at celestial1987@aol.com

moonsword said...

oh wow, I'd be grateful for either book but I'd especially love Vegan on the Cheap! I became a vegan in college partly because I just lost my appetite for non-vegan things (bacon especially turned me off), but mostly because I think you should treat animals as well as you treat humans, with respect and compassion. I believe animals are conscious emotional intelligent beings, maybe just in different modes than us. Thank you!

gwgjoan said...

I would love Vegan on the Cheap because I am vegan and I am cheap. But hey Party Vegan would be cool because who doesn't like a party? So surprise me!
I have been vegan for 5 years. I made the switch for the animals, the planet and my kids. I have never looked back!

Candy Beans said...

I love Robin Robertson's books and I don't have Party Vegan yet, so that would be my pick!

Those cupcakes are so pretty!

Emilia said...

I'd love either one!!! my email is emilia_avalos81@msn.com

Sharen said...

My email address is sharensa1@earthlink.net.

Anonymous said...

I enjoy reading your blog. I'd be happy to win either book. kbullis@everestkc.net

Jessica (Bayjb) said...

I like the party one! I think it's a great way to get friends to eat vegan without being too overwhelming.

The Steffens said...

I heart cookbooks! You've got my email. Mwah!

Randa said...

Vegan Cheap! I've always wanted to try vegan cooking but haven't ventured out because I thought it would be too much. Happy one year to you blog

aboutlifestar @ gmail . com

Jamie said...

Happy Birthday, Foodie Friday! Isn't being an Aquarius fun?

I've been vegan since the tail end of 2001, because it's awesome. Put me in the drawing for the Party Vegan, because it's so hard to find fun food to serve friends and family that they don't label as "weird" right off.

Ema Kilroy said...

I'd love to win Robin's Party Vegan book. I have been vegetarian all my life and am always looking for new and exciting ways to entertain with healthy vegan foods that are likeable. Thanks for the opportunity to win.
ema@emakdesigns.com