Introduction

This is a cookbook in progress. In compiling it, i set the following requirements.

Yummy. The food should taste great.

Fast. The food should take at most 30 minutes to make, excluding trivial preparation, such as soaking legumes overnight to remove their phytic acid. I enjoy cooking but don’t want to spend a lot of time doing it. To fulfill this requirement, several of the recipes below use a pressure cooker.

Vegetarian. The food should not require the killing of animals. I like to minimize the animal suffering involved in my meals and going vegetarian is a step in the right direction. Going vegan is a bigger step that i’m not willing to take at present.

Pre-industrial. The ingredients should be as close as possible to the ones eaten by our pre-industrial ancestors. That rules out 20th-century edible food-like substances (synthetic flavorings, high-fructose corn syrup, skim milk powder, etc.), food grown with synthetic pesticides, and even canned food because of the shadey chemical linings used in the cans. I don’t trust that stuff.

Grain-free. The food should not contain grains: wheat, rice, corn, oats, etc. I’m eating less carbohydrate these days, and cutting out grains is one simple way to do that. I’m cutting back on sugars, too, which is probably more important health-wise, but i’ll still include some sweet recipes, such as ice cream. Mmm.

In formatting this book, i used the following abbreviations:

c = cup, T = tablespoon, t = teaspoon.

I also used metric units such as liters, kilograms, and Celsius with their standard abbreviations. Finally, i chose to write single fractions instead of mixed numbers, such as 3/2 instead of 1 1/2, because i find them easier to read.

This cookbook is open-source with license Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0). You can contribute to the book via its Git repository. Enjoy and share!

Mayonnaise

Makes: 1/3 c / Equipment: bowl, whisk

Ingredients

  • 1/2 t Dijon mustard
  • 1 t apple cider vinegar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/4 c olive oil
  • 1 t honey
  • salt to taste

Directions

  1. In a bowl, whisk the egg yolks, mustard, and vinegar until frothy.
  2. Very slowly drizzle in the olive oil while whisking rapidly until thick.
  3. Whisk in the honey and salt.

Tempeh Sauerkraut

Serves: 3 / Equipment: large skillet

This one comes from Lorna Sass.

Ingredients

  • 2 T coconut oil
  • 500 g tempeh, cut into fingers
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 red capsicum, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, diced
  • 1/2 t caraway seeds
  • 3 c sauerkraut
  • 1/4 c water
  • 1/4 c mayonnaise or honey mustard (homemade of course!)

Directions

  1. In a large skillet sauté the tempeh in 1 T of oil until golden brown. Set aside.
  2. With the remaining oil, sauté the onion, capsicum, and garlic until lightly browned.
  3. Add the tempeh, sauerkraut, mustard, caraway, and water and continue to cook, stirring continuously, until heated through.

Pumpkin Hotpot

Serves: 4 / Equipment: pressure cooker

Ingredients

  • 1 T coconut oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, diced
  • 2 t diced ginger
  • 400 mL chopped tomatoes
  • 400 mL coconut cream
  • 2 c pumpkin, chopped
  • 1 t ground turmeric
  • 1 t ground coriander seed
  • 1 t ground cumin
  • 1/2 chili powder
  • 275 g tofu, cubed
  • 2 c spinach
  • 3/2 t salt or to taste

Directions

  1. Heat the oil and sauté the onions, garlic, and ginger for a minute.
  2. Add the tomatoes, cream, pumpkin, and spices and pressure cook on high for 5 minutes.
  3. Add the tofu and spinach and simmer for 5 minutes.
  4. Add the salt and serve.

Mung Dal

Serves: 6 / Equipment: pressure cooker, small saucepan

Ingredients

  • 3/2 c dried mung beans, soaked for at least 4 hours
  • 5 c water
  • 2 T coconut oil
  • 400 mL chopped tomatoes
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 T shredded ginger
  • 1 t ground turmeric
  • 1 hot chili
  • 1 red capsicum, chopped
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 t cumin seeds
  • 2 t black mustard seeds
  • some coriander leaf for garnish

Directions

  1. Except for 1 T coconut oil, the cumin seeds, and the mustard seeds, put everything into a pressure cooker, and cook at high pressure for 11 minutes.
  2. In a small saucepan, fry the reserved coconut oil, cumin seeds, and mustard seeds until the mustard seeds begin to pop.
  3. Add the fried seeds and oil to the soup, garnish with coriander leaf, and serve.

Chana Dal

Serves: 6 / Equipment: pressure cooker, skillet

Ingredients

  • 3/2 c dried chana dal or yellow split peas, washed and soaked for at least 1 hour
  • 6 c water
  • 1 t ground turmeric
  • 3 thin slices unpeeled ginger
  • 1/2 t garam masala
  • 4 T ghee
  • 2 onions chopped
  • 1 t cumin seeds
  • 3 cloves garlic chopped
  • 1 t red chili powder
  • some coriander leaf for garnish

Directions

  1. Put the chana dal, water, turmeric, ginger, and 1 T ghee into a pressure cooker, and cook at high pressure for 10 minutes.
  2. In a skillet, fry the reserved ghee and onions until golden. Then add the cumin seeds and garlic and stir fry until the garlic is lightly brown.
  3. Add the fried stuff and chili powder to the cooked soup, garnish with coriander leaf, and serve.

Chickpea Curry

Serves: 4 / Equipment: food processor, large sauce pan

This is the spiciest (highest spice count) dish i’ve ever cooked! It is also my favorite Hare Krishna recipe.

Ingredients

  • 1 c dry chickpeas, soaked for at least 4 hours
  • 3 c water
  • 1 T coconut oil
  • 1/2 t ground cinnamon
  • 1 T fennel seeds
  • 1/8 c curry leaves
  • 1/2 T asafetida
  • 400 mL coconut cream
  • 400 mL chopped tomato
  • 1/2 kumara, diced
  • 1/2 T ground fennel seeds
  • 3/4 T ground coriander seeds
  • 3/4 T ground fenugreek
  • 1/2 T ground turmeric
  • 1/2 t chili powder
  • 1/4 T garam masala
  • 1 T channa masala
  • 1 head broccoli, chopped
  • 1 t tamarind concentrate
  • 1 t salt or to taste
  • some chopped coriander for garnish

Directions

  1. Pressure cook the chickpeas and water at high pressure for 18 minutes, separate the liquid from the beans, and set aside both.
  2. In the meantime, in a large saucepan, heat the coconut oil and sauté the cinnamon, unground fennel seeds, curry leaves, and asafetida until fragrant.
  3. Add the coconut cream, chopped tomato, and kumara, and bring to a boil.
  4. Reduce heat to simmer and add the remaining spices.
  5. Cook until the kumara is just short of tender, about 8 minutes.
  6. Add the broccoli and tamarind and cook for another 5 minutes.
  7. Add the cooked chickpeas and enough chickpea liquid to thin.
  8. Garnish with coriander and serve.

Chili

Serves: 6 / Equipment: pressure cooker

Ingredients

  • 3 T olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, diced
  • 1 green capsicum, diced
  • 2 jalapeños, diced
  • 2 ribs celery, diced
  • 1 t oregano
  • 1 t basil
  • 1 t cumin seed
  • 1 t smoked paprika
  • 1/2 t ground turmeric
  • 1 t ground coriander seed
  • 1/4 t cinnamon
  • 800 mL chopped tomatoes
  • 800 mL water
  • 2 c assorted dried beans (but not chickpeas, because they take too long to cook compared to other beans), soaked for at least 4 hours
  • 1/2 kumara, diced
  • 2 c greens such as kale
  • 1 t salt or to taste
  • some coriander for garnish

Directions

  1. In a pressure cooker, heat 1 T olive oil and sauté the onion, garlic, capsicum, and chilis until golden.
  2. Add in everything else except the salt and coriander, and pressure cook at high pressure for however long the slowest cooking bean needs, e.g. 12 minutes for a kidney bean + pinto bean + mung bean combination.
  3. Add the remaining olive oil, salt, and coriander, and serve.

Moroccan Chili

Serves: 6 / Equipment: pressure cooker

This one comes from Lorna Sass.

Ingredients

  • 1 orange juiced
  • 12 cloves
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 medium onions, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 2 medium leeks, cleaned and chopped
  • 1 c mushrooms, coarsely chopped
  • 2 large carrots, coarsely chopped
  • 1 rib celery, finely chopped
  • 1 large red capsicum, seeded and diced
  • 1/2 c raisins
  • 2 c chopped tomatoes
  • 3/2 c brown lentils, picked over and rinsed
  • 3 c vegetable stock or water
  • 2 t ground coriander seeds
  • 2 5-cm cinnamon sticks broken in half
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions

  1. In a pressure cooker, heat the olive oil and sauté the garlic, onions, and leeks until the leeks begin to soften, about 2 minutes. Add the mushrooms, carrots, celery, and capsicum, and cook another minute over medium-high heat, stirring frequently.
  2. Add in the rest of the ingredients.
  3. Bring to high pressure and cook there for 11 minutes.
  4. Add salt and pepper and serve.

Italian Lentil Soup

Serves: 6 / Equipment: pressure cooker, a cup

This one comes from Lorna Sass.

Ingredients

  • 6 c water
  • 2 c brown lentils, rinsed
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1 large onion, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 2 large cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 4 ribs celery, cut into 2cm slices
  • 2 large carrots, chopped
  • 125 g mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 t dried thyme or marjoram
  • 3/4 t dried oregano
  • 1/4 t dried chili flakes
  • 3 T tomato paste or 2 large tomatoes, coarsely chopped
  • 2 T balsamic vinegar
  • 1 t salt or to taste
  • some parsley for garnish

Directions

  1. Put everything except the tomato paste, vinegar, and salt in a pressure cooker, and pressure cook everything at high pressure for 11 minutes.
  2. Remove the bay leaves, add the vinegar and salt, dissolve the tomato paste in a cup of soup, and stir the cup back into the soup. Garnish with parsley and serve.

Orange Squash Soup

Serves: 4 / Equipment: pressure cooker, immersion blender

This one comes from Lorna Sass.

Ingredients

  • 1 kg butternut squash, kabocha, or delicate squash, scrubbed, - seeded, and cut into 1 cm chunks (peeling not necessary)
  • 1 small onion, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 2 c cups water
  • 2 T coconut oil
  • 1 c freshly squeezed orange juice (see cook’s Notes)
  • 1/4 c rolled oats
  • 1 T freshly grated ginger
  • 1 T finely minced or grated orange peel
  • 1/2 t ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 t ground coriander seeds
  • 1/2 t sea salt, or to taste
  • 1–2 T maple syrup or honey
  • some toasted pumpkin seeds for garnish

Directions

  1. Place all ingredients except the maple syrup into a pressure cooker, and cook at high pressure for 5 minutes.
  2. Puree the soup with an immersion blender, add the maple syrup, thin slightly with water or orange juice if necessary, and garnish with toasted pumpkin seeds.

Cabbage Salad

Serves: 6 / Equipment: large bowl, small sauce pan

Ingredients

  • 1 medium head cabbage (about 1.5 kg), thinly sliced
  • 1 apple, grated
  • 200 g roasted and salted peanuts
  • 1/2 c desiccated coconut
  • 1/4 c lemon juice
  • 1/4 c chopped coriander
  • 1/4 c coconut oil
  • 2 t black mustard seed
  • 2 t cumin seed
  • 2 t asafetida
  • 1/2 t turmeric

Directions

  1. In a large bowl, mix the cabbage, apple, peanuts, coconut, lemon juice, and coriander.
  2. In a small sauce pan, heat the oil and fry the spices until fragrant.
  3. Mix everything together and serve.

Red Cabbage Salad

Serves: 6 / Equipment: big bowl

Ingredients

  • 1 medium head red cabbage (about 1.5 kg), grated
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 t caraway seeds
  • 1 apple, grated
  • 2/3 c balsamic vinegar
  • 2 T olive oil

Directions

  1. In a big bowl, combine the cabbage, salt, and caraway seeds in a large mixing bowl, and thoroughly squeeze the mixture for several minutes to soften the cabbage and release its juice.
  2. Mix in the rest of the Ingredients.
  3. If you have the time, chill the salad for several hours before serving.

Mashed Kumara

Serves: 4 / Equipment: medium saucepan, steamer basket, small skillet

Ingredients

  • 1 c water
  • 1 kg kumara, cut into 1 cm cubes
  • 2 T coconut oil
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 t allspice
  • salt to taste

Directions

  1. In a medium saucepan with a steamer basket, boil the water and then steam the kumara (with the lid covered) for about 10 minutes, or until soft.
  2. Meanwhile, in a small skillet, fry the onion in the coconut oil.
  3. Mix the steamed kumara, fried onion, allspice, and salt, and mash.

Hummus

Serves: 4 / Equipment: pressure cooker, food processor

Ingredients

  • 1 c dry chickpeas, soaked for at least 4 hours
  • 3 c water
  • 1/2 c tahini
  • 1/4 c lemon juice
  • 1/4 c olive oil
  • 1 t salt
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 t cumin

Directions

This is most easily prepared with a food processor, but you can also use simple implements such as a whisk, mortar, and pestle.

  1. Pressure cook the chickpeas and water at high pressure for 18 minutes.
  2. Separate the chickpeas and liquid and save both.
  3. In a food processor, whip the tahini and lemon juice.
  4. Add in the remaining ingredients, blend, and thin to your desired consistency with the chickpea liquid.

Tarator

Serves: 6 / Equipment: big bowl

This is a Bulgarian recipe from my mother.

Ingredients

  • 1 L yoghurt
  • 3 c water
  • 1 T balsamic vinegar
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 t olive oil
  • 1 large cucumber, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 c walnuts, chopped
  • 1/2 c fresh dilled, chopped

Directions

  1. In a big bowl, mix the yoghurt and water thoroughly.
  2. Mix in the rest of the ingredients.
  3. Chill and serve.

Black Bean Brownies

Makes: 12 brownies / Equipment: food processor, baking dish

The chia seed and water combination used in this recipe is a clever vegan substitute for eggs.

Ingredients

  • 2 T chia seeds or flax seeds + 2 T water
  • 400 mL cooked black beans
  • 1/2 c maple syrup
  • 3/4 c cocoa powder
  • 1/4 c nut butter, such as peanut butter
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 3/2 t baking powder
  • coconut oil to grease the baking dish
  • nuts, goji berries, cocoa nibs for garnish (optional)
  • some creamy topping, such as coconut yoghurt (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C
  2. Grease the baking dish in coconut oil
  3. In the food processor, pulse the ground chia seeds and water. Add the maple syrup, black beans, cocao powder, nut butter, salt, vanilla, and baking powder. and blend until smooth, adding a little water if necessary.
  4. Pour the mix into the baking dish, smooth over with a knife, and sprinkle with the optional garnish
  5. Bake until the top is crispy but the inside still fudgey, about 25 minutes

Nut Butter Muffins

Serves: 12 / Equipment: big bowl, baking mold for 12 muffins

Ingredients

  • 1 c nut butter such as peanut or almond
  • 2 spotty bananas
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1 t apple cider vinegar
  • 1 c blueberries

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. In a big bowl, mix the nut butter, bananas, and eggs until smooth.
  3. Mix the baking powder and vinegar in a separate bowl and then add that to the main mix.
  4. Gently fold in the blueberries.
  5. Spoon the batter into 12 muffin cup and bake for 10 minutes.

Chocolate Tempered

Makes: 185g / Equipment: sauce pan, grater, thermometer, chocolate mold (optional)

Ingredients

  • 100 g cocoa butter
  • 80 g cocoa powder
  • 1 t crushed vanilla beans
  • 2 t sugar

Directions

  1. Finely grate 1% of the cocoa butter (1 g) or a little more and set aside
  2. Melt the remaining 99% of the cocoa butter in a sauce pan or double boiler until it reaches 46°C
  3. Remove from heat and thoroughly mix in the remaining ingredients
  4. Cool/heat the mix until it reaches 35°C
  5. Mix in the grated cocoa butter to seed the crystallization of the chocolate
  6. Pour into a chocolate mold, pan, baking paper, something like that
  7. Let it cool at room temperature until it hardens

Variations

  • Replace the vanilla with 2 t of diced peppermint leaves
  • Add 1/2 t orange zest, 1/2 t cinnamon, and 1/2 t ground chili

Notes

The heating and cooling to specific temperatures in this recipe tempers the chocolate so that it hardens and remains hard at room temperature. Also, including liquids in this recipe would ruin or make very difficult the tempering.

If you don’t want to temper the chocolate, you can skip steps 4, 5, and 7 and cool the chocolate in the refrigerator, but you better keep it there. Bringing the chocolate back to room temperature will probably cause melting and mealiness.

Chocolate

Makes: 185g / Equipment: sauce pan, chocolate mold (optional)

Ingredients

  • 50 g cocoa butter
  • 50 g coconut oil
  • 70 g cocoa powder
  • 20 g cocoa nibs
  • 1 t ground vanilla beans
  • 1 t carob powder
  • 1 t honey

Directions

  1. Liquify the cocoa butter and coconut oil over medium heat in a sauce pan or double boiler
  2. Remove from heat and thoroughly mix in the remaining ingredients
  3. Pour into a chocolate mold, pan, baking paper, something like that
  4. Chill and store in a refrigerator

Variations

  • Add 40 g dried cherries or cranberries

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Makes: 12 cookies / Equipment: food processor, large bowl, baking tray

Ingredients

  • 1/2 c Medjool dates, pits removed
  • 2 c almonds
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 1/8 t salt
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 2 T coconut oil, melted
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 c shredded coconut
  • 1/2 c dark chocolate chips

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. In a food processor, grind the dates, almonds, baking soda, salt, and vanilla into a fine mix.
  3. Add the coconut oil and egg, and blend for a few more seconds until mixed.
  4. Transfer the mix to a large bowl, and stir in the shredded coconut and chocolate chips.
  5. Shape the mix into 12 cookies and place them on a baking tray.
  6. Bake until golden brown, roughly 15 minutes.

Variation

Replace 1 c almonds, the coconut oil, and the shredded coconut with 1/2 c peanut butter to make peanut butter chocolate chip cookies.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Pie

Serves: 8 / Equipment: pie plate, small sauce pan, large plate, large bowl

Ingredients

  • 1 c diced almonds
  • 1/4 c coconut oil
  • 1 banana, sliced into disks
  • 250 g dark chocolate
  • 1/2 c peanut butter
  • 500 g silken tofu
  • 4 T maple syrup or honey

Directions

  1. Crust. In a small sauce pan, melt the coconut oil and mix in the almonds.
  2. Press into a pie plate.
  3. Lay the banana slices on the crust.
  4. Filling. Melt the chocolate in a double-boiler (a large plate on top of a small sauce pan of simmering water)
  5. In a large bowl, mix the melted chocolate, peanut butter, tofu, and maple syrup into a homogenous goo.
  6. Pour the goo into the crust and chill for an hour.

Apricot Balls

Makes: ~33 tablespoon-size balls / Equipment: food processor

Ingredients

  • 3/4 c raw cashews
  • 3/4 c raw almonds
  • 1/4 c pitted Medjol dates
  • 3/2 c dried apricots
  • 1 dash salt
  • 1/4 c shredded coconut
  • 1 T grated orange zest
  • 3/2 T grated fresh ginger

Directions

  1. In a food processor, blend all the ingredients except the ginger until homogeneous.
  2. Blend in the ginger.
  3. Shape into balls.

Ice Cream

Serves: 4 / Equipment: ice cream maker

Ingredients

  • 1/8 t guar gum
  • 4 eggs yolks
  • 1/3 c grade B maple syrup
  • 600 mL cream
  • flavorings

Directions

  1. In a medium bowl, mix the guar gum with a little bit of cream to make a homogeneous paste with no lumps.
  2. Mix the paste with the remaining ingredients.
  3. Pour into an ice cream maker and make. Alternatively, put in the freezer and stir every 20 minutes until it reaches your desired consistency.

Notes

The guar gum is to prevent the ice cream from freezing too hard.

Here are some example flavorings.

  • Vanilla: add 2 t vanilla extract
  • Chocolate: add 1 t vanilla extract and 150 g melted dark chocolate
  • Raspberry: add 2 t vanilla extract and 300g mashed raspberries
  • Peppermint: add 1 t vanilla extract, 2 t peppermint extract, and 25 g shaved chocolate bar
  • Rosey: add 2 T rosewater
  • Fat Elvis: add 2 t vanilla extract, 1 very ripe bananas mashed, 25 g shaved chocolate, and 1/3 c peanut butter

Lemon Curd

Serves: 2 / Equipment: sauce pan

Ingredients

  • 4 T butter
  • 1/2 c lemon juice
  • 5/2 T maple syrup
  • 4 eggs

Directions

  1. Melt the butter in a sauce pan over low heat
  2. Mix in the rest of ingredients, eggs last, and stir periodically until thick
  3. Chill then serve

Rhubarb Sauce

Serves: 1 / Equipment: sauce pan

Ingredients

  • 3 ribs rhubarb, leaves removed and finely chopped
  • 1 T water
  • 1 banana, peeled and coarsley chopped
  • 1 t honey

Directions

  1. Combine the rhubarb and water in the sauce pan and cook covered on medium-high for 5 minutes.
  2. Add the banana, reduce the heat to medium, and cook covered for 5 more minutes, or until the rhubarb has disintegrated.
  3. Remove from heat, mix in the honey, and serve over yogurt or ice cream.

Hooray for Baking Soda

Baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate is a versatile chemical compound.Besides baking with it, you can use it as part of

  • Tooth powder: mix three parts baking soda and one part salt and brush your teeth with the stuff
  • Mouthwash: add baking soda to water and rinse to neutralize mouth acids and kill bacteria
  • Body deodorant: dampen your armpits with water and apply a little baking soda
  • Exfoliant: dampen your skin with water and gently rub with baking soda
  • Cleaner: sprinkle some baking soda on a dirty surface, add your favorite liquid cleaner (water, vinegar, etc.), and rub. Don’t do this on aluminum surfaces, though, as baking soda attacks the thin nonreactive protective oxide layer of this otherwise very reactive metal.

For more uses of baking soda, check out its Wikipedia article.