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Book review

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Book review

Everyday Flexitarian: Recipes for vegetarians & meat lovers alike by Nettie Cronish and Pat Crocker Whitecap Books, 2011, 276 pages, $29.95 ISBN: 978-1-77050-021-1 The New Year and resolutions go together like split pea soup and ham. Or in the case of Nettie Cronish and Pat Crocker’s newest cookbook, Everyday Flexitarian, like split pea soup and shiitake mushrooms. Cronish and Crocker make reducing our household meat intake a realistic resolution by offering a vegetarian and a non-vegetarian option for a variety of tasty dishes. In a nutshell, being a flexitarian means eating a largely plant-based diet but occasionally consuming meat, fish, and other animal products. In a deeper sense, flexitarians are aware of the impact our food choices have on our health and the environment, thereby choosing more plant-based meals and opting for ethically raised meat when possible. Although PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) would prefer it, the world is not going to convert to veganism—at least not cold turkey (pun intended). However, most will agree that eating less meat is something they’d be willing to try, and many are willing to make big changes, swapping out all meat-based dishes for nutrient-rich vegetarian options. Everyday Flexitarian is the perfect resource for both groups. Especially handy for families feeding both vegetarians and omnivores, this book provides easy swap-outs for all types of dishes. Having company? Pappardelle with Grilled Salmon, Spinach, and Asparagus can easily be tweaked for veggie friends by leaving off the grilled salmon and sprinkling crumbled feta and mint atop. Is Monday Mexican night at your family’s home? Prepare mole sauce, divide between two dishes, and bake with either chicken or tempeh for a spice infused dinner sure to please any palate. Even for those who have already made the conversion to vegetarianism, Everyday Flexitarian offers dozens of family-tested and -approved dishes, created by culinary instructor, cookbook author, and vegetarian extraordinaire Cronish. The vegetarian dishes are, in fact, the foundation of the cookbook, with meat incorporated sparingly throughout. For families that just can’t give up the meat, Crocker, international writer, photographer, and author, offers a healthier perspective to meat consumption. She suggests it be eaten as a condiment or flavour spike rather than a focal point, thus reducing our exposure to heart disease. If living a healthier lifestyle and being kinder to the planet are two of your resolutions this year, pick up a copy of Everyday Flexitarian and tick both off your list. Buy Everday Flexitarian at amazon.ca

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