Okay, so anyone who has read my blog for any length of time, follows me on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter (all RunCrissieRun) knows that I’ve been a huge fan of the Happy Herbivore for many, many years.
Lindsay develops recipes that are low fat, oil free, healthy, and best of all…EASY. As much as I love a good complicated recipe with exotic ingredients, I also appreciate something elegantly simple that can be made with everyday ingredients (aka – no trip to a natural food store necessary!). I think her books are great for anyone new to plant-based eating or wanting to get more good stuff in their diets.
I admit that I own all her books, have participated in a few of her challenges (healthy eating or just happy living!), follow her blog, and have subscribed in the past to her super simple meal plans. Why? Her food is easy and it tastes good. Enough said.
I was fortunate enough to get a copy of Happy Herbivore Holidays & Gatherings for review! I’ve reviewed a book of her’s in the past (click here to read more), and was more than excited to do it again.
This book has chapters broken up by holiday, which I think is pretty cool. I’ll be honest, newer veg heads do get some anxiety around the big food holidays like Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter because their new dietary lifestyles buck against many long-standing family traditions (and they often fear what their families will think…and their families worry how to feed them!).
I have made the butternut soup (with her green chili twist) from the Thanksgiving chapter about 6 times in the past month!
Speaking of chapters….(like my segue there?!?)…here’s what you can expect:
- Planning the party chapters – very cool tips on planning big meals and having everything coordinated.
- Thanksgiving, Winter Holidays, New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Day, Tailgating & Appetizing Parties, Romantic Occasions, Brunch, Breakfast in Bed, Easter & Passover, Picnics, Barbecues & Outdoor Parties, Kid-Approved Parties, Large & Mixed Crown Entertaining, Party Bars
- Appendix with extra recipes, dinner party menu suggestions, and ingredients glossary
Other things I made:
So the recipe I get to share is a personal fav also. One of the things I loved in my pre-vegan days was an awesome cream of broccoli soup. I’ve come across a few over the years that I’ve liked, but none as much as this one.
Cream of Broccoli Soup
- 2 1/2 cups broccoli
- 2-3 cups veggie broth
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1/2 cup cooked rice or potato, chopped
- 1 cup nondairy milk (I use either homemade soy milk or So Delicious Coconut Milk)
- red pepper flakes (to taste – I put in a good 4-5 shakes)
- lemon juice from 1 lemon (I admit to using the bottled stuff)
- optional add ins – nutritional yeast, basil, thyme
- salt to taste
- Saute the onion and garlic until onion is translucent. I use a non-stick pan, but can also line the pan with a small amount of your veggie broth (a good tip for the future to saute without oil!)
- add 1/2 cup of the broth and the rice or potato and cook until the liquid is mostly cooked off. I personally didn’t cook the potato first, and just let it simmer until the potato was soft.
- add another 1/2 cup of broth and the broccoli. Cook until broccoli is very tender (you can use frozen broccoli too)
- add the non-dairy milk and using either a blender or an immersion blender (which is what I used here), blend until creamy. Add more broth as needed.
- Simmer until heated through.
- Add lemon juice and red pepper flakes (and any optional ingredients) just before serving. (I actually prefer to add the red pepper before I blend to more evenly distribute the heat!)
I really love this soup. The entire batch is only 336 calories – so there’s no guilt if you decide to eat the entire pot (which I’ve found pretty impossible to do!). I did add a bit of sprinkling of the nutritional yeast to give it that cheesy flavor, but didn’t use the basil or thyme. I didn’t think it needed it, personally.
I will be giving away one copy of this book to one of you lucky readers! To be entered, please just leave a comment below, and I will do a drawing on December 26th (just in case Santa doesn’t bring you a copy for Christmas!).
Good luck, and in the mean time, feel free to check out more of The Happy Herbivore at her blog (click here)or if you’re looking for a simple solution to consistent healthy eating, her individual or family based meal plans here!