Lazy Saturday Review: PETA’s Vegan College Cookbook #BookReview

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I started doing ‘lazy Saturday reviews’ as a way of getting reviews done in just 30 mins, and they proved to be quite popular. They are quick and snappy, and concentrate less on the plot (or content) and writing and more on my overall feelings about said book. They generally end up being a bit of a rant. My fave!

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Title: PETA’s Vegan College Cookbook
Author: PETA
Series: N/A
Format: Digital ARC, 336 pages
Publication Details: April 5th 2016 by Sourcebooks
Genre(s): Food & Drink – Cookbooks
Disclosure? Yep! I received a free copy in exchange for an HONEST review. 

Goodreads 

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You can have the simplest, tastiest vegan recipes on a budget — and the best part is, the most complicated kitchenware you’ll ever need is a microwave. Including more than 250 recipes, we’ve got all the best insider info:

– Vegan alternatives to meat, eggs, and milk
– How to stock your kitchen/mini-fridge
– How to make meat-free sandwiches, salads, soups, and sauces
– Fun meal recipes, such as Fettuccine Alessandro, Walking Tacos, and Pancake in a Mug
– The best drinks, dips, and dressings
– Unbelievable vegan dessert recipes
– Spotlight sections on the staples we love: peanut butter, potatoes and Ramen
– And much, much more!

With new tips and treats to suit even the pickiest palate, this is the essential college cookbook for every vegetarian or vegan on a budget.

Remember: You have the power to save animals-every time you eat. We can show you how!

Review

OK so I’m not Vegan (and I doubt I ever will be), and I’m no longer a student (still poor though FYI) but I’m trying this dairy-free thing at the moment as an elimination test for allergies & eczema so I thought this book might give me some new dairy-free ideas.

I was wrong.

This book isn’t what I was expecting at all. Yes, I guess it does cater particularly for students lacking in money, time, space and equipment  but the recipes here are so basic that I wouldn’t even call them recipes. It’s more like “open packet of pre-prepared vegan food >>> eat >>>done”. Nearly everything involves a microwave and either tofu or ‘a packet of vegan _____ (enter anything and everything there)’. 

I guess I was looking more for  healthy, natural and yummy recipes that happen to be vegan, not recipes which mainly show you how to do vegan junk food on a budget. It certainly took the whole ‘college’ thing to the extreme and to be honest I’m surprised PETA put their name to this at all, not to mention that this is an updated version, and the original seems to have been pretty slated too (on Goodreads at least). Glutton for punishment it seems.

I am probably being a bit harsh. Maybe if I was Vegan when I was at university I would have relished this book. Although I honestly think I made better food in my student days from a trolley-full of Asda Smart Price products. Hmm.

I will say this though, it was an entertaining read. The LOLZ at student life and food puns to go along with it stood out much more than the food itself. I mean, I’m not sure if I was laughing at them or with them…but it put a smile on my face regardless. For that reason and because I’m sure it would be useful to many a lazy, poor student (who happen to be Vegans) am I giving it 2 unicorns. If this book was aimed at me, it would get 0.5. 

unicorn rating 2

Festive Thursdays are back!

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For the next couple of Thursdays I’m going to be sharing with you all of my Christmas preparation, the books I’m reading, the films I’ve watched, gift ideas I’ve found, and the festive events I’ve attended. Because, well, I LOVE CHRISTMAS SO HARD.

I know I say it all the time, and so does everyone else, but WHERE THE HELL HAS THIS YEAR GONE? I’ve been so busy with work and RL that even December crept up on me this year. I’m usually cracking out the Christmas films as soon as Halloween is over, but this year has been a bit more slow on the up take.

I have however, finally made a start, and managed to do quite a lot of Christmassy things in the last week or so.

Christmas Markets: 
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The first time I feel festive usually coincides with the start of the Christmas market in my town and on the Southbank. I didn’t manage to make it to the lights switch-on this year, but I have already sampled the mulled wine (much better this year), and devoured a hog roast from the local market and it was gooooooood.

Festive Reads:

I had a really hard time deciding which seasonal reads to add to my shelves this year. I bought a couple from a charity shop a couple of weeks ago, and I was approved for the following book on Netgalley which I’ve just finished.

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Decorations:
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Yes, my decorations are up and I love them! I went all out this year and bought some new items which I hope I’ll keep for a long time.

I also made some of my own decorations this year, from melting glitter beads in the oven, in cookie cutters. They were so much fun and easy to make and they look amazing hanging in front of fairy lights on the tree. I sold a set on Etsy, and there is still one set of 6 up for grabs. You can see them here.

Gremlins: 

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I went to see a special screening of Gremlins at my favourite cinema in London, in which BILLY did a Q&A, and brought Gizmo with him, of course. It was great! It’s one of my favourite Christmas Films!

Christmas Cake:
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I’ve had my fruit and spices soaking in brandy for around six weeks now. I was only planning on around 3 weeks but I just never made the time to bake the cake. I did finally bake it last Sunday though….it better be good! All that’s left to do is feed it more brandy syrup (of course) and ice it. I use this recipe here, which has great results even without soaking your fruit – so there’s still time!

Next week: Winter Wonderland @ Hyde Park, Christmas Pudding Vodka and Christmas muffins, and what I’m reading and watching!