Entertaining for a Veggie Planet by Didi Emmons
Didi Emmons comes to the rescue for vegetarian dinner-party hosts with this guide to orchestrating intimate gatherings or large parties with food so good the guests won't notice it's meatless. Sound principles are at work here: parties exist so you can "feed people (yourself included)" and "enjoy people (yourself included)." Emmons gives tips on making dips (Greek Skordalia, Roasted Red Pepper Dip) and crudites, using salads (Green Bean-Sweet Potato Salad with Peanut Dressing, Mango Slaw) as buffet centerpieces, and buying pre-made snacks at Asian groceries. Festive touches, like beets for Pink Eggs and "Seizing" Hot Fudge Sauce (it hardens over ice cream) add creativity without hardship. There's even an ingenious "miraculously cheap wedding for fifty in ten easy steps" sidebar that includes tea sandwiches and brie with currant jelly and pecans. Even if you're just entertaining your kids, they'll enjoy Sloppy Joes and Crunchy Peanut Butter Balls. Plentiful tofu and seitan recipes will satisfy vegans. There are chapters on "intimate gatherings," brunches, pizzas, risottos, and sweets and drinks, although no comprehensive beverage chapter. Main courses like Spaghetti with Green Olive Pesto and Spinach, Crunchy Chickpea, and Hazelnut Ragout are piquant yet easy to make. With sidebars on such topics as the great Turkey day conundrum, how to make inexpensive centerpieces and how to get people to help out, this is exactly what veggie hosts need in order to plan, execute and, most importantly, enjoy their own parties.