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4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 6 March 2011
I bought this book for my mother-in-law for Christmas and having had a flick through it, decided I wanted to get one for myself! I'm so glad I did. After trying in vain for months to get our family shop down below £100 (we're a family of four with two young, hungry boys) and, although we're not vegetarians, we enjoy a mainly vegetarian diet. I love cooking, but with two young sons don't want to spend the whole afternoon in the kitchen, yet don't want to stop giving them healthy, homecooked meals. I've been making recipes from this book for about 4 weeks now and every single one - from comfort food like cheesy lentils or macaroni to more exotic dishes like Jamaican rice and peas or carrot, pea and potato curry - have been very easy, very quick to make and most of all TASTY. The recipes seem to satisfy adult and child palates, and are well-balanced nutritionally, ensuring vegetarians get enough protein and vitamins and minerals. I can't recommend the book enough, even to those who eat meat, and particularly if you want to save money on food without compromising on the taste and range of the meals you provide to your family. And, of course, if you're time poor!
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on 20 October 2010
I totally rate this book. I am a serial buyer of cookery books, and a vegetarian for many years. I enjoy cooking, but usually don't have a lot of time through the week, who does? I think that some vegetarian cookbooks are very labour intensive with ingredients that can be difficult to source, or impractical for the sake of one recipe. Rose Elliots offering is a joy to read. I like the look of the book, its very visually appealing and the recipes are very clear and easy to follow. Vegan alternatives are also given in many cases. The ingredients are easy to source, most of the stuff you will already have in your storecupboard. The recipes are generally quick to prepare, and yet very tasty indeed. Wholesome is the word, but not bland. I have only had the book for a few weeks and have enjoyed a pepper and bean goulash twice it was so good made with smoked paprika, last night I made spaghetti with aubergines and red wine which was delicious. A bonus for me is that the food is suitable for all the family, so that I can easily puree batches for my baby, which isnt possible with many recipes. The book is beautiful to peruse, I have spent a few nights curled up drooling and planning my next eats! There are various sections, one on soups, which usually dont appeal that much to me, but theres some beauties in here. One on sauces, pasta dishes, mains, appetisers, desserts, breads. Its a comprehensive volume and one which I know that I will use a great deal. I give this full marks, you wont be disappointed.
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on 8 March 2010
In my opinion this really does live up to its reputation as 'the only vegetarian cookery book you will ever need'. The old version of this was my favourite ever cookery book, and I am so pleased that its brilliance has finally been recognised by releasing this lovely new version which more than lives up to it. It is brilliant value- (the number of recipes to the pound must be the most on the market!), absolutely crammed with easy and straightforward, tasty recipes for every occasion and organised in a really clear and sensible way. Where so many recipe books skip randomly from one thing to another this is methodical and covers everything. For example, there is a fantastic range of soups - so many it amazes me - and main courses are organised into the main ingredient type - pulses, pasta, rice - etc so that it makes planning a meal or even an entire week very easy.

This is the perfect book for someone who is thinking of going vegetarian. It is a must-have for all vegetarians, and would be very useful for non vegetarians as well, as the range of dishes is incredible. Another small point is the layout and illustrations - stylish yet practical. You won't be afraid this book will fall apart if you spill something on it (likely in my case!) A top quality publication.
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on 16 October 2010
Over breakfast this morning I browsed one of my many cookery books salivating over the delicious looking photos and descriptions. Maybe I should add that I probably hold the national collection of cookery books, read them like novels with huge enjoyment, but rarely follow them. Most are way too fiddly and take too much time to prepare.

The exception is the delightfully practical Rose Elliot. I discovered her when I first turned veggie at about 21. In those days I was a student living on beer and apples and could barely burn a piece of toast. The mainstream cookery books were a bit intimidating; all that folding in flour and making choux sauces (sic)! But Rose Elliot's Not Just A Load of Old Lentils made me realise that actually I could make veggie food that looked attractive (have you noticed how often veggie offerings are a uniform shade of dull brown?), tasted good and didn't contain cheese or cream in every recipe.

Pause to rant:

I do wish the British catering establishment would come to the same realisation for the sake of all our arteries. They seem to think that if veggies don't scoff at least one portion of cholesterol filled vegetarian lasagne per day we'll have to be carted off to hospital for reviving injections of meat substitute. I may certainly die of boredom in their restaurants .....

Mrs Elliot is really the unsung heroine of the veggie kitchen. Forget your Delias, Nigellas and Jamies (nothing personal chaps, but you really haven't got the best grip on this topic), Mrs Elliot's newest offering The Complete Vegetarian Cookbook says it all - literally. It offers hundreds of her classic recipes, plus a number of new ones (for the occasional calorific treat try Boozy Banoffee Pie yum!), and will appeal to a very wide audience of cooks and foodies, whether vegetarian or not. The main thing for busy people is that the recipes are practical and you don't have to fiddle around for hours in the kitchen. Who's got time to do that? Recipes like Lentil Croquette or Bulgar Wheat and Feta Cheese Pilaf can be put together quickly and don't need anxious nurturing and stirring all the time.

The recipes are easy-to-follow (no more blanching strawberries or coddling muffins :)) and she indexes her work in a logical fashion, so you can easily find something quick to make for tea, or something elegant for a more sophisticated occasion.

Highly recommended for an enjoyable read - and for everyone who enjoys the pleasure of eating tasty simple and on the whole healthy food, especially restaurants who ought to be preparing it.

The HR Headmistress
Author: How to Get Top Marks in ... Managing Poor Work Performance
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on 30 October 2010
We've been on a vegetarian kick off and on for a few months now and as a consequence have been looking at and buying a few veggie cookbooks.
I've been pretty surprised about the general malaise of these books - often terribly earnest and serious tomes written by worthy joy stranglers who are vegetarians for "all the right reasons". Or on the other side full of massive pictures and silly recipes like "broccoli & breadcrumbs". Apart fropm this not being a recipe, more an idea, it certainly doesn't deserve a huge picture.. it smacks of being shortchanged and it looks like there's plenty of publishers on the market that can push any old tosh out and justify it because they're catering to a niche audience.
Cheerfully there are a few that I've found that are fantastic however and this is probably the best of the bunch.

The recipes are clear, well written by someone who obviously cooks and it contains more or less everything you'll need to set yourself on an accessible, tasty vegetarian diet. No oddball ingredients or prohibitively exotic spices - just simple and good meals. What more could one ask for? If you fancy trying a bit of vegetarian fodder for a while this is the place I'd recommend you start.

Unlike a lot of other veggie cookbooks Rose Elliot seems less on a crusade for vegetarianism and more just for good food that happens not to feature meat. I like it a lot. Apart from the recipe for red cabbage casserole - make and eat this at your own risk.....
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on 7 April 2010
I have been a veggie for 20 years and have had a few of Rose Elliots books, her recipes are easy to follow so I decided to get this. I was not disappointed and when going through it realised how she had influenced me over all these years.

I thoroughly recommend this book to both Rose officados or people new to veggie recipes, the book is packed with old friends and new delights, it is not fully of glossy pictures just the recipes. Rose Ellot is inspiring and the recipes very tasty, You soon learn to combine different flavours ( try the butterbean stew with cider) and they become staple family meals.
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on 14 March 2010
This is a completly revised edition of Rose Elliot's Complete Vegetarian that has been unavailable for some time. There are new colour illustrations and the book has a fresh up to date feel. The recipes are a combination of reliable classics and exciting new ones. This is certainly worth buying and mine has already become a firm favourite. It is an essential for any vegetarian kitchen.
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on 10 November 2010
Don't let this book's pictures gallery on Amazon fool you, it only contains pictures for the "here comes a new chapter!"-pages with generic pictures of "salads", "soups", etc. It doesn't have any pictures connected to the actual recipes (except in a few rare cases) so it's not a good book for quickly browsing for inspiration.

The recipes themselves are high quality though. They are easy to follow, use reasonably common ingredients and there are lots of them!

If it had (a lot!) more pictures showing off the dishes I would had given it 5 stars.
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on 3 August 2010

It is rare these days to get two bites of the culinary cherry. Good things in Food Land can sometimes be fleetingly quick - consumed and forgotten. So, when the opportunity does arise, it should be grabbed with both hands.

Rose has completely revised this legendary standard and it has been republished.

She has endeavoured to cut out the more dated offerings, recognising that tastes move on and that we now have a massively increased range of ingredients that we can avail ourselves of three hundred and sixty five days a year. She has replaced them with an array of vibrant offerings to tempt even the meat eaters among us to tuck in.

Not losing sight of the fact that this feature is here to highlight a book's longevity and its right to adorn pride of place on the kitchen bookshelf, it is worth delving into to the ivory pages spattered with discreet shots of mouthwatering offerings to see what it's about.

Vegetarianism is becoming increasingly popular in the UK, and more and more of us are adhering to the regime of having at least one meat free day per week. Some of us just fancy something veggie from time to time.

Ever an exponent of having the right tools for the job, this is a custom built five star cookbook for the job. Literally, there is something in there for everyone.

For the quick after work suppers, there is an array of pasta and grain based dishes. From Penne With Asparagus and Morels, to Bulgar Wheat and Feta Cheese Pilaf, so many of the dishes can be almost thrown together while attending to the thousand and one early evening tasks in a working home.

There is plenty of advice too. Each chapter is introduced with an explanation of the more unusual ingredients - amaranth, hemp seeds and edamame beans to name but a few. Their introduction into each carefully written recipe then becomes seamless, allowing the novice to acquire a repertoire of accessible and tasty dishes.

For the summer days yet to come there is a colourful array of salads to be enjoyed alone or even, dare I say alongside a lazy summer barbecue on balmy evenings. Cabbage Salad with Mint and Pomegranate, Salata and the ubiquitous Tabbouleh rank amongst my favourites to date, although many summers will come and go before I could work my way through the huge selection.

Strangely, here is still an all pervading mystique surrounding anything made with nuts and pulses, the former being reserved for Christmas stockings and the latter served in a tomato sauce from a can.
It is here that Rose comes into her own. She unfolds before our very eyes that a Croustade of Mushrooms or a Lentil Croquette is startlingly simple. More than that it tastes fabulous too.
Page after page unfurls the methods used to prepare both nuts and beans so that the end result is a highly nutritious meal.
Finally, it must be said that there has been an exacting effort to ensure the recipes are clear, easy to follow and most of all turn out as they should. Much of the time with minimum effort. So many books today fall very short of this high benchmark, and bad recipes have been a criticism levelled at some of the mainstream celebrity chefs and their books.

So, if you want to try out vegetarian cooking for the first time or want to revisit it after your student days long since past, here is a true treasure trove that will endure another twenty five years or even longer.

Buy, try and enjoy the fruits of your labour.
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on 14 April 2010
My parents own this cookery book and I have grown up eating a fair proportion of these recipes as family favourites. I recently bought the book myself, and expect that for a little while at least it really will be the only cookery book I need. There is a recipe for everything, all the classics and more. I feel inspired to try them all as I'm sure they'll all be tasty! Although this is the newer version with some modern recipes added in I haven't noticed it missing any of those from the earlier edition. The presentation in the new version is very nice also, and the relatively small number of photos rather than being disappointing just means there is lots more room for recipes. Who wants photos of other people's food anyway? I am quite excited about trying the recipes for crumpets and croissants and all the things that are a lot easier to just buy from the shops but will be a lot of fun to make!
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