Thursday, August 21, 2014

Cookbook Review-VB6 by Mark Bittman

I find myself very conflicted about The VB6 Cookbook by Mark Bittman. The author is a very popular writer who writes regularly for The NY Times, I even have his How to Cook Everything Vegetarian from my earlier vegetarian years. The reason I am so conflicted is this cookbook advocates eating vegan except for dinner. All of the recipes in this book are designed to help a person get healthier (?) and lose weight. Mark Bittman advocates a vegan diet for health and describes how a compromise between vegan and meat-eating helped him to reverse high cholesterol and other weight-related issues.

But, how do I as a vegan feel about this book? The author mentions that veganism just isn't an option for him, because he likes a wide variety of foods. I cannot agree with this at all. When I ate meat, I pretty much ate the same things all the time. Being vegan, opened me up to a wide variety of foods that I would have never heard of, much less have tried. I wonder if this book would lead someone to consider a vegan lifestyle or convince them that it is not necessary.

There are many differing views in the vegan community; I guess it will boil down to whether you choose this lifestyle for diet or the animals. I think that anyone who is exposed to animal suffering will ultimately make a different choice from Mr. Bittman.

Okay, I did try two recipes from this book- Mushroom Nut Burgers which were very good. I was prepared to not like these, but surprise! Very flavorful and satisfying. I also tried the Decadent Oatmeal Cookies- I liked them, but I do not think they were decadent at all. It tasted like an healthy cookie.

I plan to pass this book on to a family member that wants to explore veganism, but has found it challenging. I hope that this idea (VB6) will spur him to improve his health and transition to a new lifestyle.

A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for this review.

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