For Christmas, my boyfriend bought me a copy of Hema Parekh’s The Asian Vegan Kitchen. I’d had the pleasure of looking at this cookbook a long time ago when I checked it out from the library, and although I’ve had the intention of purchasing it ever since, I just never got around to it. The photo insert is full of beautifully-prepared dishes, and there are a variety of recipes from the Asian continent.

I’ve already made a few recipes from the book, and I am impressed.

What you see above is the chickpea curry and the chapati from the chapter on Indian cuisine (by far the longest section in the book – not a bad thing!). The chapatis were pretty plan, just like chapatis should be, but the chickpea curry was really saucy and flavorful. This was by far the best chickpea curry I’ve ever made. The recipe uses pureed tomatoes, and I think that had to do with it to a degree. The pureed tomatoes blend the flavors together better than diced/chopped tomatoes do. I also had some leftover seitan in an Asian-y glaze, but there wasn’t really a recipe. I just sort of threw things together and thankfully it turned out great.

Last night I made the bamboo shoot and green pea stir-fry (Burma) and the Korean simmered tofu chorim. I’ve had a can of bamboo lurking in my pantry for months, so I thought this would be a great opportunity to use it up. The bamboo pairs pretty well with the peas, and there’s a very simple sauce. This would be a great recipe for a busy night – it comes together quickly with little preparation.

The simmered tofu chorim was out-of-this-world delicious. It’s just fried tofu with a sweet soy sauce, but there are a lot of flavors going on here. Instead of the mirin called for in the sauce, I used marsala wine because it was the closest thing I had. I’m not sure if it changed the flavor much, but this was so good I ended up eating a pound of tofu by myself because every time I walked into the kitchen I grabbed another slice.

I roasted some sugar snaps and cooked some quinoa to have on the side. It was a very fulfilling meal.

Do any of you have this cookbook? What should I make next?

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