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Quick-fix Vegan: Healthy, Homestyle Meals in 30 Minutes or Less Paperback – 13 Oct 2011

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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing (13 Oct. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1449407854
  • ISBN-13: 978-1449407858
  • Product Dimensions: 18.8 x 1.8 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 109,686 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

An experienced chef and consultant, Robin Robertson worked for many years in restaurants and catering in South Carolina. In 1988, she left the restaurant business and rededicated her life to writing and teaching gourmet vegan cooking. The author of 19 vegan and vegetarian cookbooks, Robin is a 25-year veteran restaurant chef, caterer, columnist, cooking teacher, and food writer. She writes "The Global Vegan" column for VegNews Magazine and was a contributing editor and columnist for Vegetarian Times.

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3.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Jane Easton on 4 Aug. 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I think this book rocks! I really love Robin Robertson: she's a bit of a US vegan Delia - her recipes are delicious, well-explained and they work. I also own her 'Vegan on the Cheap' and '1,000 Vegan Recipes' which are genius imho.

Firstly,, about 90-95% of the ingredients are easy to source. Re the more unusual items, I realise that might be a problem for newish vegans or those cooking for them. But it's simply because as a US book it doesn't list UK brands

In fact, most of them are available in big supermarkets, Sainsbury and Waitrose especially: I've bought miso (sweet and dark varieties); vegan mayo (Plamil brand); vegan marg (Pure and Vitalite); vegan puff and shortcrust pastry (Jus-Rol and most s/market own brands, just check no added butter). Tempeh isn't yet in supermarkets but is available in good health food shops - frozen. Holland & Barrett will also stock most things. Vegan sausages? Linda McCartney's are vegan. Other brands (health food shops) include Redwood, Fry's and Vegetarian Choice.

Re using vegan stock, if you don't have home-made (I rarely do!), just use a vegan stock cube or bouillon powder. Marigold red and purple tubs are vegan (not the greeny orange one); Kallo do vegan stock cubes and even Green Oxo is vegan. Things like chipotles in adobo - just use dried chipotles, soaked in stock and don't worry about the more obscure extras. (Chipotles are a dried, smoked chilli - yummy!)

If anyone has a problem with a US vegan ingredient, Google it - not only do most of the big UK supermarkets have an ingredient search - but there are lots of UK online health food stores such as Goodness Direct, Alternative Stores, Veggie Stuff and tons more that deliver. Similarly, US sometimes has different words for foods, e.g.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 12 Mar. 2012
Format: Paperback
I follow a vegan diet due to food intolerances. I usually improvise my own recipes so they end up not particularly nutritionally balanced so I bought this book so that I could cook one meal for all of us (me and my meat-eating husband and two sons) once a week, that would be tasty and nutritionally balanced without taking ages to prepare.

I was really looking forward to getting this book after reading many positive reviews on amazon.com. I did read one review saying that gluten flour for seitan was hard to source but looking at the index it seemed that this was only a few recipes so I wasn't too concerned.

However on receiving that book and looking at the recipes it uses a lot of unusual and 'cheat' ingredients which are not readily available for example tempeh, vegan sausages, soy creamer, vegan puff pastry and vegan mayonaise all make regular appearances. The 30 minute cooking time is also a bit of misnomer as it a lot of the ingredients listed take time to prepare first, e.g. making the seitan, preparing the vegetable broth, chopping the vegetables.

That said, the recipes that do make use of easy-to-find ingredients are very tasty and nutritionally balanced so if you are prepared to either spend time sourcing the unusual ingredients or are prepared to be unable to use about half of the recipes then it's still a good cookbook.
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Good recipes with very little fuss, highly recommend for those who need a quick meal with store cupboard regulars. Ideal for those starting out vegan.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 197 reviews
196 of 199 people found the following review helpful
Very good, fast recipes 1 Mar. 2012
By LFL - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm deducting only half a star so this is actually a four and a half star review.

I have this as an ebook and I really love it because I'm a slow cook (always have to double the prep time on recipes because I can never get them made in the amount of time they supposedly take) and this cookbook makes getting dinner on the table in a reasonable amount of time doable.

My two caveats is that I would love for there to be less fat in the recipes (I don't need them to be fat free, but healthier would be nice) and also, for them to use fewer expensive ingredients (like puff pastry or sun dried tomatoes in oil). I have Robertson's Vegan on the Cheap as well and it is a good cookbook but far more time consuming.

At this point, I would give my left arm (well, almost) for a book of quick, tasty, healthy and cheap vegan recipes. But until one comes along, I will continue endangering my Kindle by bringing it into the kitchen so I can use this book. The recipes are quick, tasty and vegan, which is the best I've been able to find.

So far I've made the following:

Ginger Sesame Seitan with Spicy Basil Snow Peas -- I made a variation of this this substituting super firm tofu for the seitan and broccoli for the snow peas as she suggests could be done. It was very good.

Coconut-Curry Cauliflower and Chickpeas -- just so so. I thought this recipe relied too much on the curry powder for flavor which is fine if you have superb curry powder but mine was not enough by itself. It tasted curry like but didn't pop.

Tofu Skillet Scramble -- Also good and to save time I just threw in fresh red pepper without roasting it first.

Spicy Smoked Portobello Tacos -- Very good. I made it with chopped crimini mushrooms.

Moroccan Chickpeas with Tomatoes and Spinach -- Very good especially considering how speedy it is to make. A little heavy on the tomato flavor, but I've already made it twice.

Southwestern Pasta Toss -- Pretty good but I thought it needed something to make it a little more saucy.

Sweet Potato Spinach Soup -- Excellent. Maybe not the healthiest thing I've ever had, with 1/3 cup of Peanut Butter but really worth making once in a while.

Chard and Red Lentil Soup -- Also excellent, and healthy. I think this might be my favorite recipe from this cookbook so far. And if you make it with red chard, it also has a lovely color.

Burrito Scramble -- Good.

Farmer's Market Pasta Salad -- Good. I substituted stir-fired broccoli for the fennel, since I'm not a fan of fennel.

Tempeh Normandy -- Very good even with substituting cider for the apple brandy.

I also recommend Robertson's companion book, Quick Fix Vegetarian - also a vegan cookbook regardless of its title.

4/26/12 Update

Since I posted this review, I've made the following:

Rotini with 10-Minute Tomato-Olive -- terrific, just excellent. I used San Marzano crushed tomatoes and I'm sure that didn't hurt. This sauce was oily, but so good that I've made it four or five times now.

Roasted Ratatouille -- pretty good but a little dry. I had to bake it about ten minutes more than the recipe called for.

Linguine with Artichokes and White Bean Alfredo -- good but I think the sauce would make a truly awesome party dip without the pasta.

Jerk Vegetable Skillet -- very good but not that quick for me.

Seitan Donburi -- good and fast but needs more veggies. I think next time I make it I'll throw in a frozen Asian vegetable mix.

Portobellas Stuffed with Chickpeas and Chard -- very good but took me a long time to make. Not a "quick fix" for someone as slow in the kitchen as I am.

Sicilian Stuffed Shells -- excellent. The tofu filling with the parsley and raisins was very good.

Chickpea and Spinach-Artichoke Crostini -- good and surprisingly filling.

Lemony Couscous and White Bean Pilaf -- good but very lemony.

Shortcut Mushoom Risotto -- okay, but not wow. Texture somewhat similar to risotto but I can make an equally fast and better risotto in the pressure cooker.

Lebanese "Sleek" -- Very good (I used the Za'atar spice mix option). Loved the combination of kale and black eyed peas.

Green Chile Tofu Migas -- okay.

White Beans with Mushrooms and Sauerkraut -- okay, esp. considering that I dislike sauerkraut and vegan sour cream, both of which this dish contains.

Tofu "Scampi" with Spinach (made with dulse granules) -- Excellent, even though I must've done something wrong and the coating came off the tofu in the pan. We didn't care, it was just so delicious.

One Pot Pasta Primavera -- Good and very quick to make. It reminded me of the Aglio Olio pasta I've had in Italian restaurants.

Update 1/12/2013 I've added more recipes to this review (everything starting from Sicilian Stuffed Shells on down to the end) and want to say that at this point, I'm thinking of cooking my way through this book, I like it so much.
247 of 254 people found the following review helpful
FANTASTIC for the vegan and supportive non-vegan alike! 18 Oct. 2011
By Blythe Dresser - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
When my boyfriend went vegetarian last year I wanted to show my support for his healthy lifestyle change so I picked up Robin Robertson's Quick-Fix Vegetarian: Healthy Home-Cooked Meals in 30 Minutes or Less. We're just out of college and we live on a pretty strict budget so we were able to quickly and affordably make the recipes out of that cookbook with very little fuss! Not only that, but as a non-vegetarian I was absolutely loving the meals we were making!

So when he told me he was going vegan, I knew I had to pick this up for him for his birthday! And, much like with Quick-Fix Vegetarian, I'm glad I did!

Robin Robertson never fails to deliver on really scrumptious recipes that are easy to make and affordable. We're usually able to pick up 90% of the ingredients listed within at our local Trader Joe's and only occasionally do we have to go to Whole Foods to find a rare item. This makes making dinner very budget-friendly.

Here are some of the recipes we've tried so far and have adored:

The Jerk Seitan and Vegetable Skillet - Even though I still eat meat, I think seitan is a great and very tasty substitute. And, as a bonus, you don't end up feeling all bloated and heavy after mealtime.
Black Bean Sunburgers - We were always spending a pretty penny buying black bean burgers in bulk at Costco, but this recipe showed us how to save money making our own! They freeze really well so it's great being able to make a bunch at a time and saving them for later. Super tasty!
The Tiramisu Parfaits - These are TO DIE FOR tasty! One of the things my boyfriend has struggled with is how a lot of vegan deserts end up tasting dry or brittle. It was nice to whip these up and they taste just as good (if not better) as the real thing!
Easy Artichoke Puffs - I absolutely adore artichokes, so I could wait to try this one. We made these when we were having (non-vegan) company over and everyone ate them right up. Our guests loved them just as much as we did.

What I like most about this cookbook is the variety. Every course of a meal is covered and Robin Robertson doles out some very practical advice in the introduction of the book about the vegan lifestyle as well as how to properly equip your kitchen and stock your pantry for preparing these meals. I would definitely suggest this book as a first cookbook for anyone thinking of making the transition over to veganism. This book isn't too intimidating for beginners, but still has a great sense of variety for more experienced diners.

I honestly think you can't go wrong with this book, vegan or not, especially for this price! If you pick it up, you'll be glad you did!
123 of 126 people found the following review helpful
My new favorite cookbook 7 Dec. 2011
By Cathe - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I was so excited that Robin Robertson came out with a new cookbook. Roberson's books have long been a staple at my house, but with her new book, Quick-Fix Vegan, I think she's outdone herself.

According to the book cover, Quick-Fix Vegan contains 150 "healthy, homestyle meals" that can be prepared in "30 minutes or less." Unlike other "quick" cookbooks that rely heavily on jarred sauces and prepared foods, the recipes in this book are made largely from whole, unprocessed foods . . . foods I have on hand and feel good about serving my family.

The chapter of Starters and Snacks includes Moroccan Pumpkin Hummus, Super Nachos, and Easy Artichoke Puffs. I made the vegetable fritters--a mixture of shredded onions, potatoes and vegetables, held together with flour and nondairy milk--for my family and they were a huge hit. In fact, I've made them several times since, varying the vegetables, herbs, and flours with excellent results. The leftovers, if there are any, go great in the kids' lunchboxes. It was a bit challenging to get the fritters all cooked in under 30 minutes, but getting several skillets cooking at once does decrease the cooking time (though adds to the cleanup time).

I'm a big soup fan--especially this time of year--and Robertson includes some great ones. We loved the Creamy Greens Soup made with kale and coconut milk; and the Cream of Mushroom Soup was sublime. I haven't had a chance to try any of the Speedy Sandwiches or Snappy Salads, but am looking forward to making the Sloppy Portobellos, Seitan and Slaw Wraps, Freeburgers, and Burmese Ginger Salad.

The selection of Stovetop Suppers and Pasta Express dinners include a variety of veganized international favorites like Tofu "Scampi" with Spinach, Jerk Seitan and Vegetable Skillet, Korean Hot Pot, and Skillet Lasagne. I made the Tofu Skillet Scramble and it was super quick and easy, and very flavorful. The book also includes recipes for condiments, gravies and chutneys, and desserts like Pear Turnovers, which I am dying to try, and Molasses Ginger Cookies with blueberries.

Every recipe I tried worked well. The instructions were clear and simple. The ingredients are ones I had on hand or could find easily. Some of the recipes do take longer than 30 minutes to prepare. For example, the baking time for the Portobellos Stuffed with Chickpeas and Chard is 25 minutes. But you still need to prep the ingredients and cook the chard for 7 minutes. So read over the recipes carefully if you really are pressed for time just to be sure.

My recommendation? This is one of the best cookbooks I've found in a long time. The meals are great for families--nothing too outlandish, but nothing boring either. It is definitely the first one I'll turn to in the busy months to come.
31 of 31 people found the following review helpful
Quick and Easy Gourmet Vegan Cuisine for People in a Hurry 3 Dec. 2011
By Gail DR - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Vegan chef Robin Robertson, who has written more than twenty books, including a few of my favorites--Vegan Planet, Vegan Fire and Spice, Vegan on the Cheap, and along with husband, Jon Robertson, Vegan Unplugged, has put together another fabulous collection of mouth-watering plant-based recipes. In her latest book, Quick-Fix Vegan, she helps readers prepare fabulous vegan meals inexpensively and deliciously in 30 minutes or less. Drawing on culinary influences from around the world, the book is jam-packed with great-tasting recipes for the most sensational snacks, salads, soups, sandwiches, stove-top suppers, and sweets you'll ever eat!

I have a rule of thumb about cookbooks: it's basically, "three strikes and you're out." If I try three recipes at random, and none of them are very good, I cut my losses of time, money, and energy and recycle the book. But my experiences with Robin's previous books have always been positive--I've yet to try one of her recipes that wasn't a winner. So when I began looking through the pages of Quick-Fix Vegan and decided to first try her recipe for Seitan Gyros, I knew I was going to love it. But this dish exceeded my expectations, as the seasonings and refreshingly light tzatziki sauce (which I made with the new Greek-style coconut milk yogurt), made Robin's gyro our family's new favorite sandwich.

More Quick-Fix Vegan recipes we loved: Indonesian Vegetable and Tofu Scramble, which blends together a medley of Southeast Asian flavors to create a tasty twist on a staple dish; Moroccan Chickpeas with Tomatoes and Spinach, which went from stovetop to table in just fifteen minutes and boasted no fewer than eight aromatic spices that made every bite delectable; and Thai-inspired Primavera-style Coconut-Cashew Noodles that combined the vibrant taste of fresh green vegetables with chewy pasta noodles and a dreamy-creamy sauce.

Rather than relying on packaged, highly processed faux meats and cheeses, I love that Robin's recipes are made from inexpensive, healthful, and hearty whole foods with modest amounts of minimally processed ingredients like tofu and seitan. More recipes from Quick-Fix Vegan that I can't wait to wrap my lips around include Romaine and Pear Salad with Sherry-Walnut Vinaigrette, Sloppy Portobellos, Curried Cauliflower Soup with Roasted Cauliflower "Rice," Catalan-style Crème Brûlée, and Apple Pie Parfaits! (Yes, there is a whole chapter filled with yummy desserts!)

With the bounty of delectable recipes you'll find within its pages, Quick-Fix Vegan's cover price is a bargain that will pay for itself many times over by saving you time in the kitchen and cash at the grocery store.
28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
Requires too many vegan "alternative" ingredients 28 Nov. 2013
By T Lau - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As an expat who spends most of my time living abroad, I was looking for ideas for easy vegan recipes that I could make with local produce and ingredients. Unfortunately, nearly every recipe in Quick-Fix Vegan calls for ingredients that are only available in American supermarkets: vegan sour cream, vegan cream cheese, vegan yogurt, Old Bay seasoning, vegan puff pastry, frozen vegetables, jarred roasted red peppers, canned beans, premade marinara sauce. It's not worth it to pick up the cookbook and get excited about a recipe then find I can't make it, or that assembling it from ingredients I do have would take exorbitant amounts of time (e.g., soaking and cooking dried beans). I prefer to cook with fresh, plant-based ingredients rather than processed "shortcut" ingredients.

If you are in an area with limited access to vegan processed foods, or if you prefer recipes made solely with fresh whole foods, look elsewhere.
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