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September 13, 2011



Vegan Planet has some great menus on pgs 180-183. I’d like to try the Thai One On and the Knock-their-Socks-Off International Appetizer Party but they all look so good.

Let us know what you decide!

Jackie Smith

I made your cheezy savory oats last week--they were delicious!

Have you considered a roasted vegetable lasagna?

Or if you're doing a casual dinner party, what about Thai-style burgers "slathered" with the dressing from Jane Esselstyn's Thai coleslaw, topped with grilled pineapple. You could serve the Thai coleslaw on the side (and people could put it on top if they want.) I think sweet potato fries would also be good with the burgers.

Healthy Librarian

Thanks for the fabulous recommendations, Penny & Jackie.

I'm looking at pgs. 180-183 of Vegan Planet right now. Oh, boy, this is going to be hard to decide. Your suggestions look fabulous. BTW, folks, pgs. 180-183 are menus for entertaining.

Glad you liked the cheezy savory oats, Jackie! Where do I find the recipe for Thai style burgers--or I you just meaning any "generic" burger, slathered with Jane's Thai dressing? Love her Thai cole slaw!

Gael in Vermont

Funny you should mention dinner party! I have one coming up in two weeks and this is what I'm serving: Lentil and Escarole Soup (from Recipes for Health in the NYT with the oil cut out of course). I use fresh spinach or kale instead of the escarole and garnish it with a spritz of fresh lemon juice for a really fresh flavor:

Then I'm going to serve stuffed acorn squash from Eating Well Magazine that I have adapted to suit my needs. For the "meat" I crumble in one of my gluten-free veggie burgers...Amy's Bistro Burgers, then I top the acorn squash with Isa's Caesar Chavez Dressing instead of the cheese. Here's the link:
I always serve some sort of crusty grainy bread for my guests even though I don't eat it. For dessert, I'll do an apple-pear crisp with the Banana Ice Cream recipe on Vita Mix's website:
just google banana ice cream and watch a video of how to do it.
One of the helpful steps I've learned in this journey is how to make brown rice so it's NOT one, big mushy mess. Lots of my friends hate brown rice because they couldn't do it correctly. So I'll share my method in case anyone else has the same problem. I bring a pot of water to a boil...just like I'm making pasta...don't measure, just fill the pot with 5-6 cups of water. Add about 1-2 cups of measuring, just be sure you have way more water than you'd usually have...and boil the rice for about 35 minutes until its done. You'll have to stand by and taste for this step. Grab a colander and spill in the rice to drain...just like pasta. You'll have perfect rice every time without the mush! I make a big batch and store in the refrigerator for the week.
Another dinner party idea I'm going to use is in Appetite For Reduction on pages 265-67. I love the idea of "the bowl" for a party. I'm visualizing a buffet party where guests travel around the table filling their bowls with whatever they wish to eat...a grain, veggie, beans and a topper of a choice of Isa's dressings. Serve with some warmed whole grain naan. The actual bowl can be part of the fun of can ask guests to bring their favorite bowl or you can use vintage bowls, wooden bowls, etc...use you imagination for this part. That sounds filling and fun to me! Great posting always!


Thank you, thank you for your continuing information and inspiration.

You're the best! You and HGK make a dynamic duo, too.

Years ago (30?), we had dinner at a NYC restaurant where they served a salad that I've been making ever since. It gets a high ranking for its "crunch factor" and the capers add great flavor and pizzaz. The original salad had canned tuna flaked into it as well as an classic oil and vinegar dressing.

We've whittled it down to just the three ingredients below--no tuna, no dressing--and we still love it, or you could add balsamic vinegar.

Red cabbage cut up into bite-sized pieces.
Celery cut up into small pieces.

That's it! Colorful, crunchy, tangy because of the capers.
Thanks again for all of your great work,


I don't know if you've seen this yet, but Ali is a great lady who shares your love of knowledge and nutritarian food:
Some great recipes too!


Love, love, love blog and the support and inspiration it provides to so many. Yes, education is important. Michael Pollan will be in Cleveland on Monday, October 24 at the CLeveland Playhouse, tickets are $30. Details can be found at:

Thank you for the wonderful, detailed, science-based information you provide!


Love your blog! I've been a follower for about 6 months, just watching from the sidelines. Then my husband met with a nutritionist at his cardiologist. He had tried 2 different statins and could not tolerate them, so the idea was to talk about diet. Well, the RN we talked to could not suggest anything different from what he was already doing- no eggs, no cheese, occasional burger and lots of pasta and chicken. 4 day a week exerciser. I asked her if she had ever heard of the Esselstyn diet. Why no, she had not. However, when my husband heard about it he was all over it. Needless to say this guy is the most goal-oriented person I have ever met (30 years and counting:). So starting in June of this year, we jumped in to plant based eating using Dr. Esselstyn, Rip Esselstyn and Joel Fuhrman, MD's Eat to Live. His cholesterol was hovering around 300 previously and after 6 weeks of cult-like devotion to plant based eating it has dropped 100 pts to 194. All the other numbers are just where they should be.

However, I have a question for you. My husband had back surgery last week, a spinal fusion with instrumentation, and all the recommendations in the hospital and for at-home have been high calorie, high protein diet. (He was never overweight to begin with and now weighs about 120 lbs.) It was nearly impossible to get no oil vegan food in the hospital. In order to meet the recommended 100 grams of protein per day, I have been giving him eggs, tuna and milk based Ensure. For the time being we have given up the vegan diet until he is cleared at his 6 week post op visit. Do you have any suggestions for boosting protein post-op short of eating mass quantities of beans?
Thanks for any help you can offer!

Mary in southern Vermont

Another informative post - thanks so much! When my son, who's now 37, was 6 months old we started him on meat, and then we read Diet for a Small Planet. We all stopped eating meat. He had a healthy childhood and occasionally eats meat now, but I think his favorite food is salad.

Wendy (Healthy Girl's Kitchen)

The original Creamy Asian Dressing had 1 cup of olive oil!
1 inch ginger
1 cup olive oil (or flax oil)
2 tsp sesame oil (toasted)
Juice of 1 lime
4 tbsp mellow white miso
6 dates, pitted, or ¼ cup maple syrup
2 tbsp nama shoyu
1/3 cup water

I thought I was winning substituting 1/2 cup of almonds plus increasing the water content to 1 full cup. But your switch to tofu is interesting. Tell me, do you taste the "tofu taste" in these dressings made with tofu? I'm not a big fan of that taste . . .

Wendy (Healthy Girl's Kitchen)

Okay, I'm giving away an entire blog posting here, but you're worth it baby!
Here's there party I'm having this Saturday night (you guys are welcome to come!)
Taco Party

Main Event:
Roasted Chickpeas (fromm The Happy Herbivore)
Taco spiced faux meat

Taco shells
shredded lettuce
blanched collard green leaves (to make wraps)
soft tortillas, corn or wheat

Mix and Match Toppers:
grilled vegetables (zucchini, mushroom and onion)
corn (fresh or frozen)
black beans or pinto beans
refried beans
cheddar cheese (Daiya non-dairy and regular for you non vegan guests)
sliced scallions
slice black olives
diced tomatoes
diced raw onion
crunched up baked tortilla chips
sliced banana peppers
artichoke hearts (water packed)

I won't serve all of this, but I will create a big bar of food. Guests can create a taco or a salad, it's up to them. Oh, and I'm going to be making your Creamy Chipotle Dressing and serving that!


I've been reading your blog for several months now and just wanted to take a moment and thank you for your inspiration and encouragement! I appreciate that you are willing to be 'real' and share your experiences. It makes me feel like maybe I'm not doing so bad after all! I appreciate that you take the time to document your plant-strong life here. It means so much to me! Thanks a million!

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