cover image Leon Fast Vegan

Leon Fast Vegan

Rebecca Seal, Chantal Symons, and John Vincent. Conran Octopus, $29.99 (304p) ISBN 978-1-84091-793-2

Vincent, cofounder of the U.K. restaurant chain Leon—along with food writer Seal and restaurateur Symons—tackle vegan cooking in this robust, whimsical volume. The authors feature a host of dishes that have been “veganized” from around the world—a bubbly, tomato-y tofu shakshuka from the Middle East; Italian pasta alla puttanesca with kelp powder instead of anchovies; and Vietnamese crispy pancakes stuffed with fresh mint, Thai basil, and bean sprouts. Recipes from their favorite vegan restaurants also grace the pages, including sesame and eggplant bao with crispy shallots from the Taiwanese restaurant Mr. Bao; and “fish” and chips made with deep-fried banana blossoms from Maisie Manterfield’s Burgerlolz in Sheffield, England. Sweet dishes, such as French toast (made with soy milk and chickpea powder) with poached rhubarb and a New York-style baked cheesecake (made with vegan cream cheese and soy yogurt) stand out. Most impressive, however, is the authors’ flare for reinvigorating traditional vegan dishes: a roux of vegan butter, flour, turmeric, and other spices, for example, makes for a creamy base for their scrambled tofu. With 200 recipes—and brimming with retro illustrations—this well-designed work will get readers excited to cook vegan. [em](Mar.) [/em]