I have an addiction to cookbooks! I tell myself I am not going to purchase any new cookbooks but then I see a new one and I can’t help myself. Usually it turns out to be a good decision and I rarely have regrets. I read cookbooks like novels cover to cover, soaking up all of the authors hints, tips and thoughts about cooking. I feel like I get to know them and their families through their cookbooks. What is even more amazing is that the internet allows me to have contact with some of the cookbook authors. Many authors are active on Instagram and facebook. You can let them know how much you love their recipes, ask questions, post photos of your interpretation of their recipes and get their feedback. This type of interaction makes cooking from cookbooks more exciting and fun! Sometimes they ask if they can re-post your photos on their IG and facebook pages. I love it!
One of my latest cookbook purchases was The Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease Cookbook from Jane Esselstyn and Ann Crile Esselstyn. You can find it at your local book store or on this Amazon link.No I don’t have heart disease and I don’t anticipate having any in the future either. Following a whole foods plant based diet is all about eating healthy and preventing heart disease, diabetes and reducing the risk of developing cancer. My thinking is that it’s easier to prevent against these diseases to begin with rather than waiting to get sick and then changing your lifestyle. I’m not paranoid about getting ill nor do I obsess about it, I just think it makes sense to adopt a healthy lifestyle and manage my health as best I can through diet and exercise.
The Esselstyn family follow a heart healthy diet and they travel the country sharing their knowledge and helping to educate people on how to change to a plant based lifestyle. Caldwell B. Esselstyn, Jr. MD published his Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease in 2007 to share his research which showed that patients with significant coronary artery heart disease could stop and even reverse their illness by changing their diets. If they avoided oil, meat and dairy and instead choose a whole food plant based diet they could become healthy again. Plant based nutrition can prevent chronic disease!
The recipes in this book have been amazing. Super easy to make but big on flavor. I have been serving up these delicious new recipes to the family. Banana Steel Cut Oats which I served with my own Chia Jam for breakfast – fast easy and filling. The Eat Loaf which is jam packed with oats, beans and veggies. The recipe makes two loaves to feed a crowd or perfect for cooking ahead for the week. It bakes with a layer of BBQ sauce in the bottom of the pan as well as on top. Sooooo yummy. The Magnificent Mushroom Ragout has a deep earthy flavor and it can be used in so many ways. I served some over the Eat Loaf, daughter Katy used some to top off some soup, perfect over a baked potato and just as a side dish. I also think it would be fabulous over a bed of polenta.
The Mango Lime Salsa was a big hit here – so fresh and flavorful. A perfect side dish to the most amazing Mexican Style Beans I have ever made. The recipe is called Matt’s Sofrito Black Beans on page 209. You start with dried black beans which I made in my slow cooker then you add onions, peppers and seasonings which gives these humble beans so much depth and flavor. They were a huge hit with my family – yes even the omnivores devoured them. Now my daughter uses this recipe all the time and people always ask for the recipe. The cookbook is worth the price just for this recipe alone!
Jalapeno and Salsa Corn Muffins taste a lot like a tamale but with tons more nutrition. They stand on their own but will surely be enjoyed along side big bowls of plant based chili this winter. I had no idea about chocolate balsamic vinegar until I saw it listed as an ingredient in some recipes in this cookbook. I found a bottle of it at my local Nugget Market – a kind of specialty grocery store. Wow is it ever tasty. You can drizzle it over some fresh berries or on top of fruit based desserts. Yum! Updating 10/16/2017 to say that if you follow Chef AJ’s Ultimate Weight Loss program the muffins and chocolate balsamic vinegar are not compliant on the program.
I highly recommend this cookbook for anyone who loves healthy delicious food. There is a nice section in the front of the cookbook all about how to stock your pantry with hearth healthy foods. There is a Q & A with Dr Caldwell Esselstyn JR., MD which will answer many questions you may have about a whole foods plant based diet. I love the photos of the recipes – it helps me decided what to make first and makes the recipes even more enticing. When I started to bookmark recipes to try I soon realized that I actually wanted to make just about everything so I stopped marking the pages!
Eating a plant based diet isn’t about deprivation – quite the opposite. There are so many incredible food choices that I really don’t miss animal products in my diet. It is a big change initially from the mainstream SAD – Standard American Diet but it’s so easy once you make the change.
I have tried even more recipes so here is a run down of all them to date!
Someone asked me what recipes I have tried from The Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease Cookbook so I thought since I had already typed this up I would share it with everyone. It really is one of my favorite cookbooks and there are so many recipes in it that fit into the UWL program. Just skip over the other recipes in the book. The only recipe I have tried from The PRHD cookbook that I wasn’t crazy about was the Reboot salad but my hubby loved it and most of it by himself over a few days.
I hope this helps you, I was shocked at how many recipes I have tried! Good luck with your cooking – it’s nice to have some variety.
*Caramelized onions pg 27,
*Sauteed mushrooms pg 28,
*crispy tortilla bowls with corn tortilla bowls pg 30,
*Banana Steel Cut Oats pg 44,
* Polly’s lentil soup pg 90,
*Middle Eastern Chick Pea Stew pg 94,
*Our Hummus pg 102,
*Raspberry Sauce pg 113,
*Mango Lime Salsa pg120,
*Smoky Little Devils but I used the Our Hummus instead of the green onion hummus and then I sprinkled green onion slice on top pg 132,
*Janes Favorite 123 Dressing but I sub a large date for the maple syrup and make a triple batch pg 174,
*Eat Loaf pg 184 it makes two loaves and I cut one into individual servings and freeze it, pg 184 its awesome! Use Shayda’s BBQ Sauce – the recipe is in the files here on the facebook page.
*Kale Stuffed Tug Boats pg 191,
*Matt’s Sofrito Beans pg 209 my favorite way to make black beans – serve it with the mango salsa and brown rice. I toss the ingredients for the beans in my slow cooker and cook them for 3-4 hours on high and then proceed with the recipe for the sofrito as written. No need to pre-soak the beans this way and I don’t have to keep watch on the beans while they cook
*Cauliflower Steaks pg 233
*Magnificent Mushroom Ragout I liked it hubby didn’t. pg 240
*Mango Magic with Raspberry Sauce pg 250 but I added chuncks of fruit to it to give it some body otherwise it was too thin and runny, it was good.
You can get a few sample recipes for free as the Esselstyn’s have shared them on their web site.
If you use my Amazon link I do get a small residual which helps fund this blog.
I will be sharing more photos of my culinary creations from this cookbook. It would be awesome if you have the cookbook and would like to cook along with me. We can compare notes on the recipes and encourage each other as we explore more about eating healthy. You can find the cookbook at your local book store or on Amazon. If you follow me on facebook or Instagram you can also see what’s cooking in the Nutmeg Notebook kitchen.
I haven’t had as much time in the kitchen lately as I would like. We have been spending a lot of time at our daughter Katy and son in law Esau’s house. If you read my last post you know they bought a two year old house nearby that needed some TLC. They ended up firing the painter – to make a long story short – he was so sloppy – we have been cleaning up the disaster he made and repainting everything! Just about everything that could go wrong has gone wrong. Did you ever see that movie called The Money Pit? We feel like we are living that movie!
The good news is we are good painters – just very slow. What we have painted looks amazing. The house is being completely transformed. New carpet and other flooring will be installed the end of next week so we are working against a deadline. I feel the pressure – but we can only do what we can do.
In addition to painting I have been helping Katy grade papers – an English teacher has a ton of papers to grade. A teachers work is never done – they are so underpaid!
That’s a wrap for today. I am headed over to the house to paint!
Add your thoughts.
Does anyone want to get this cookbook and cook along with me?