Monday, May 12, 2008

Review: Seven Secrets Cookbook.

I bought a new cookbook this week. Seven Secrets Cookbook: Healthy Cuisine Your Family Will Love, by Neva and Jim Bracket. Last Wednesday we visited a friend, and she made a Lentil Soup from the cookbook that was really good. And she had a dressing for the salad that my son loved, also from the cookbook. I bought the book the next day, because it looked like one that our family would be able to use often. It is vegan, and even though it isn't gluten free, many of the recipes are free of gluten, or have gluten free suggestions. It doesn't use very many processed foods, and very little processed oils, so my husband will be happy about most of the recipes too.

I have an older cookbook by the same authors that I also use often. It is called Five Loaves. The authors ran a vegan/healthy deli in Seattle, WA for many years, and this book contains many of their tried and true recipes that they used in their deli. The new cookbook also appears that it will not disappoint.

This morning I made Chili With Corn for our lunch.

Chili With Corn
from Seven Secrets Cookbook, by Neva and Jim Bracket

1/2 cup diced onion
1/2 green or red pepper (optional)
1 - 2 cloves fresh garlic, crushed, or 1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 1/2 teaspoons California Chili
2 teaspoons onion powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups cooked black or small red beans (may be canned)
1 1/2 cups frozen or fresh corn
14 ounce can diced tomatoes in juice
2 Tablespoons molasses

1. Put onions, peppers, and seasonings in a medium sized kettle and add about 1/2 cup water. Simmer for about 8 minutes until onion is tender.

2. Add remaining ingredients, and heat to serving temperature. Top with Tofu Sour Cream if desired.

Makes 6 cups/

Note: I used red beans cooked in a crock pot overnight. For the chili, I used a combination of three chili powders that I had on hand, since I didn't have any California chili powder. I wondered what it would be like with the molasses. I didn't want it to be sweet or taste strong, but it turned out just fine. My only warning is to be careful not to walk away from it and leave it on the burner after you have added the molasses. It scorches quickly.

We served the chili on freshly cooked brown rice. Yum. It is a recipe that we will make again.

Other recipes we have tried from the book this week include French Crepes (already gluten free) and Ranch-style Dressing Mix (excellent - a powder you can mix into your own mayonnaise )

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