The Veggie Queen's excellent new e-cookbook, Nutrition CHAMPS, belongs in the top tier of plant based cookbooks that everyone who wants to eat healthy NEEDS.
Every recipe in this eBook is amazing. I kid you not. And there's so much valuable information, it'll make your head spin.
Why Nutrition CHAMPS? CHAMPS is an acronym created from the first letter of six plant-based food groups: Cruciferous, Herbs, Alliums, Mushrooms, Pulses, Seeds (and Nuts).
"These plant-based foods cover a lot of nutritional ground ... Including the CHAMPS daily will make a difference in your health which will lead to having more happiness, energy and vitality."
Author Jill Nussinow, M.S., R.D. a.k.a. The Veggie Queen is knowledgable, eloquent and passionate about plant based cooking. Her recipes are creative, colorful, tasty, fresh - and of course, healthy.
Jill is also a pressure cooking crusader. Her Pressure Cooking DVD demonstrates how ridiculously fast & easy it is to use a pressure cooker.
Regarding her latest book, Nutrition CHAMPS, Jill says, "This is NOT a rule book! ... Feel free to adjust the recipes to your specific way of eating."
"While making recipes that contain the 'best' ingredients makes sense, it also makes great sense to me that food ought to taste great. While this type of food is 'good medicine', I don't want it to taste that way."
Nutrition CHAMPS is organized according to the six plant food groups which make up the acronym. It's a unique way to write a cookbook, and makes for a wide variety of plant-rich recipes in each section.
For instance, the first section, cruciferous vegetables (cabbage family), ranges over 60 pages of recipes, from Arugula Pesto, through Moroccan Vegetable Tagine, to Sweet Watercress Smoothie. I didn't know arugula and watercress are cruciferous veggies, did you?
Another unique feature of Nutrition Champs: Jill Nussinow has included recipes from 41 different cooks - well known vegan cookbook authors such as Robin Robertson, Dreena Burton, Christy Morgan, Kathy Hester, Victoria Moran, Miyoko Schinner, Jason Wyrick, Jill herself, plus lesser known recipe developers like myself.
I'm awed to be part of the Nutrition CHAMPS collection. The unique organization and many talented contributors makes it a diverse and exciting plant based cookbook - which happens to be healthy AND tasty.
Savvy Vegetarian contributed Lentil Coconut Spinach Soup, Page 170, and Spicy Red Lentil Vegetable Soup, page 177, to the Pulses Section of Nutrition CHAMPS. IMHO, a day without pulses is nutritionally deprived, and I make those two soups regularly.
Each section of Nutrition CHAMPS includes a short introduction on that plant food group (e.g. cruciferous vegetables), with nutritional into, health benefits, history, cooking tips and more.
Jill Nussinow has also included an article about The Great Oil Debate (in which she refuses to participate).
While a fat free diet is recommended by some health gurus, the reality is that most people include oil in their diet. Jill tells us how to do it healthy, if we choose to use oil.
In the Seeds and Nut section, Jill's introduction enlightens us about seed and nut nutrition, health benefits, and uses, plus the specific properties of each kind of nut & seed. She includes a short essay which clearly and sensibly deals with the coconut oil craze.
The Herb and Spice section of Nutrition Champs impressed me to no end, because very few cookbooks talk about the enormous nutritional benefits of herbs and spices. E.G. Antioxidant equivalents: 1 tsp ground cinnamon = 1/2 cup blueberries, 1/2 tsp oregano = 3 cups fresh spinach, 1 tsp curry powder = 1/2 cup red grapes.
In her intro to the Herb Section, Jill also includes many tips and tricks for purchasing, storing, preparing and cooking with herbs and spices. E.G. "You can clean the oils out of your spice grinder by whirring white rice in it until it is powder." That's one I didn't know!
Nutrition Champs (so far) is available as an ebook - book length, extremely well organized, with tons of useful information about food and health, references, a great index, and absolutely wonderful recipes.
The Index Includes: a list of recipe contributors, every plant mentioned in the book with recipes using it (which I think is fantastic), grouped under the sections of the book, recipes by author in case you want to look up your favorites, a glossary of food terms, and a list of food resources.
The Veggie Queen closes Nutrition CHAMPS with words of plant based wisdom:
"I realize that the spectrum of plant-based eating can be confusing. One person uses tamari like it's water but thinks that nuts are 'bad'. Another is sugar, salt and oil-free but thinks that soy is OK. Someone else declares that soy is the devil. What about seeds? They're for the birds. Don't touch avocado as it is too fattening. Moderation? It kills. What are you to believe? That is a personal decision but I hope to give you some guidance." - Jill Nussinow, M.S., R.D.