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Book Review: Mostly Plants - 101 Delicious Flexitarian Recipes from the Pollan Family

Mostly Plants - 101 Delicious
Flexitarian Recipes from
the Pollan Family
.
I've never bought a cookbook in my life until now. Mostly Plants randomly came across my path when I happened upon a Youtube clip of Jimmy Fallon interviewing Michael J. Fox and his partner, Tracy Pollan.

One of the topics discussed, obviously, was the cookbook which is a collaboration with Tracy's two sisters, and her mother, with a title that comes from her brother Michael's quote:
Eat food, not too much, mostly plants.
You can watch the aforementioned Youtube clip from April 2019 below.



Mostly Plants is a Flexitarian recipe book, not to be confused with a diet book. Its main goal is to give anyone trying to eat healthier, plant based meals, some options if you'd still like to keep a little meat in the mix.

At the time I bought the book my partner had been trying to eat less meat, and even tried going vegan altogether but wasn't managing to stick with it for very long. Possibly because it's hard to change what you eat when your partner (i.e. me) isn't really on the same page. If you're the main cook in the family it's more trouble to make two different meals, right?

Though I wasn't putting my foot down or anything, insisting that my meals had to be meat centric, my partner is just thoughtful enough to think I shouldn't have to change what I eat just because she wants to try being vegan.

Authors: Dana, Tracy, Corky, Lori.
Honestly, if someone is cooking for me, I'll eat almost whatever is put in front of me, so long as it tastes okay (I will maintain beetroot and celery are not actual food though, so you need to disguise them pretty good before I'll be happy about eating them). Meat isn't a religion for me.

Anyway, that's why I bought Mostly Plants. I was thinking maybe my partner could use it for ideas on more plant based meals that didn't eliminate meat altogether but instead reduced the meat to plant ratio somewhat.

I'd like to say I've tried quite a few of the recipes in this book, but I'm not really the cook in my household.

Sure I could cook but what if I actually was good at it? It could lead to me cooking more often, or even cooking all the evening meals. Before you know it I'd be on MasterChef Australia undergoing some kind of midlife crisis with dreams of my own food truck, and that would just be chaos right there!

My partner did try making the Crispy Parmesan Roasted Chickpeas, which is a snack recipe, and concluded she doesn't actually like chickpeas... I never got a look in on tasting these, so maybe she decided I didn't like chickpeas either?

That aside, I have read all the forward and the preliminary chapters of Mostly Plants. Its philosophy of not adhering to a strict diet, mixing things up, and generally favoring plants by cooking tasty recipes seems like it's not too hard to adopt.

If you want to go all in you may have to phase in shopping for a pantry that looks more like the Pollan family pantry. Most ingredients you can probably get at your local supermarket. There are tips on how to shop more sustainably for your meats and vegetables if you want to complicate things further by being environmentally more responsible too (or maybe just support your local farmer's markets perhaps?).

There's also cooking tips from all three sisters and their mother on things they've learned along the way to help you get the best results in trying these recipes.

Most of the recipes are suited to lunch, dinner, and sweets. Nothing immediately pops out as a breakfast dish (I don't know, go mad with bacon and eggs for breakfast if that's what you're into - I'm a cereal guy with a couple of biscuits and a cup of tea).

My only complaint about this book is there's no list of all the recipes in one place so I could just casually cruise the list picking out things I'd like to try. Instead I've got to go to the chapter cover pages for a list of recipes in each chapter... is that too first world of a problem?

The Transcendent Burger.
I love a good burger, and right now, veggie burgers are gaining some traction in the marketplace. Now if veggie burgers were called 'Transcendent Burgers' that would get your attention, right?

It gets my attention at least. I think I'm more open to trying a veggie burger you can make at home more than those veggie burgers that claim to look and taste like meat... I mean, come on, you know it's not meat, why go to all that effort making it look like meat?

Anyway, if you'd like to know what's in a Transcendent Burger pick up a copy of Mostly Plants. I guarantee you'll be suitably distracted by many of the recipes that you may even forget you were trying to find out what's in a Transcendent Burger.

So this hasn't been much of a review since trying the recipes in a cookbook is somewhat of a prerequisite, and I haven't done that. Let's call it more of an awareness campaign for people interested in more healthy eating but maybe would rather sneak their way in without announcing they're starting a new diet.

If eating mostly plants, and not giving up meat entirely, sounds like a philosophy you can get behind, Mostly Plants is a great introduction to being Flexitarian, or just trying a few recipes that you may not have considered before.

Mostly Plants is available from Amazon.



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