By Sarah McColl
If the notion of vegan food still conjures images of plain quinoa and kale, get ready for Vegan: The Cookbook. In it, French chef Jean-Christian Jury offers an encyclopedic global tour of plant-based cuisine, with nearly 500 recipes from 150 countries.
“For years, my goal has been to surprise non-vegans with delicious vegan recipes, to show that meat isn’t necessary for a flavorful and satisfying meal,” he says. “At the root of it, vegan food is just food–vibrant, flavorful, fresh, varied.”
Jury’s own world travels inspired the recipes, in which he incorporates local cooking traditions and ingredients.
“For me, every good recipe needs a base made of one strong flavor, or a mix of spices to create a unique flavor, and I work around this strong flavor to add texture and nutrients,” he says.
Essentials from around the world, such as preserved lemons, tamari, harissa, and sambal oelek, factor heavily into his dishes. He also uses three readily available, familiar elements as building blocks for satisfying meals:
- Coconut oil: You can use this versatile fat in both hot and cold applications, he says; think Pakistani coconut-stuffed okra or a raw lime cheesecake
- Nutritional yeast: This B-vitamin-rich ingredient adds a “great smoky, cheesy flair” to everything from a creamy carrot and lemon hummus to fettucini with pine nuts and cashews
- Nuts: “Hazelnuts, almonds, and cashews make great nut milks and cheeses,” Jury says.
Even if your goal is to eat healthier but perhaps not to go vegan full time, you’ll still turn to this book again and again for inspiration and nourishing meals. “You can enjoy this healthy food as you slowly make the transition and move away from unhealthy processed food,” Jury says. “Once you get used to the taste of fresh and raw food without flavoring agents and excessive salt and sugar, it becomes difficult to go back to processed food.”
These hearty hazelnut and bean burgers are a perfect place to start, whether you’ve sworn off meat or just want to take a plant-based break from beef.
BIO: Sarah McColl was founding editor in chief of Yahoo Food. Her food writing has been featured in print and online for Bon Appétit, House Beautiful, Modern Farmer, Extra Crispy and others.
- 1 ½ cups (120 g) hazelnuts or almonds, crushed
- 1 cup (200 g) canned chopped tomatoes
- 1 ½ cups (360 g) cooked kidney or pinto beans
- 2 cups (240 g) breadcrumbs, plus extra as needed
- 1 tablespoon tahini
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 4 burger buns
- Lettuce leaves, sliced tomato, sliced onion, dill pickles, condiments, for garnish (optional)
- Preheat oven to 375ºF.
- Using a food processor or high-speed blender, process all ingredients (except buns and garnishes) into a smooth purée.
- Divide mixture into 4 equal portions and form each into a patty. If the mixture is too wet, add more breadcrumbs. Transfer patties to a baking sheet and bake for 35 minutes, until well cooked.
- Split the burger buns. Make a bed of salad leaves and tomato slices on bottom half of each bun, then place a burger on top. Top burgers with your favorite condiments and cover with the top of the bun.