A few months ago I approached some friends of mine and asked, what would you think about writing a book about vegetables? It had been something I had long wanted to do and I thought it was high-time to work on it. They thought it was a great idea, and a few joined me. As we began to bounce ideas off of each other it became obvious, this would be a huge project.
Since then Sara from Your Thriving Family, Danielle from More Than Four Walls, Kayla from Renown and Crowned, and I have been working hard to get a very thorough book about vegetables to you. We actually had to trim so much out of it just so that it would not be a ridiculously massive book (162 pages isn’t ridiculously massive, right?)
But, why a book about vegetables? The reason that question is valid is one of the main reasons I wanted to write it. Vegetables are under appreciated. They are not considered delicious cuisine. How many times have I heard the blanket statement of I do not like vegetables. But, there is such a massive variety of vegetables out there. Different tastes, different textures, different colors. Unfortunately many of us have not had a chance to experience them on a wide level.
When we first got married Mark and I had a token vegetable at every meal. A few pieces each of frozen steamed broccoli or sometimes carrots. We did not enjoy them but we were “good” and ate our few bites. I wanted to have a balanced meal after all.
Then one day my husband got seconds of his broccoli. This was unheard of. I asked what was his reasoning behind so odd an action. “They are funky” he said. For those who do not know my husband that means they were not boring. He hates boring food.
Thus began a journey toward “funky” vegetables. Ones that were not merely taken from the freezer to the steamer as a last minute healthy “compliment” to a meal. I began to learn something– I like vegetables. They just need time and attention too.
I am pretty sure if I were to microwave a piece of meat over water and then (maybe) add a tiny bit of butter and salt I would not care for it very thoroughly either. I began exploring the world of vegetables and liking what I found there. (With the exception of lima beans… not sure I will ever find a way I like those!)
A few months later we started eating a semi-vegan diet and I really began learning how to make delicious vegetables. It is what we ate, so I needed to. I started to immerse myself in culture that found vegetables amazing and that has had a lasting impact. Our diet has since changed (dramatically) but we still manage to put away a TON of fresh fruits and vegetables.
Learning how to make delicious vegetables my entire family (from my vegetable skeptic husband, to our young children, to probably more then slightly picky me) enjoy has not been a very quick journey. Nor has it been very straightforward. Just do not ask my husband about that papaya and tomato salad? Ok?
My hopes with this book is to help other moms in their journey to adding more (tasty) vegetables to their diet. I can not tell you how many times I wish I had a book like this a few years ago!
Want to see why Kayla, Danielle, and Sara wanted to write it? Read their posts.
So what is it?
Basically, it is a book highlighting 10+ common vegetables (and fruits botanically such as squash and tomatoes). Each vegetable section includes how to pick that vegetable, storage, prep, common usage, nutritional information, followed by recipes featuring that vegetable. There are 52 recipes for everything from breakfasts, to starters, to dinner main dishes, to side dishes. Each recipe was tested first by Sara, Danielle, or I and then sent out to other moms (and a few dads) for further testing and approval.