Sunday, July 21, 2013

Lust For Leaf Cookbook - Hot Knives

"Sitting limp and milky in a plastic shooter like semen in a used condom, coleslaw is the stuff of crappy diners. Kaleslaw by contrast is the side-dish stud. This salad can go all night."

This is the intro passage to the Kaleslaw recipe in Alex Brown and Evan George's latest cookbook, Lust For Leaf, and it's just one perfectly perverted taste of the irreverent humor, chill vibe and crazy delicious recipes you'll find inside.

The boys of Hot Knives and I are kindred spirits; we like to throw down in the backyard with cold brews, loud music and char-grilled food that smacks you in the face with flavor.  That's what Lust For Leaf is all about; it's the ultimate recipe guide for your next summer bash, weekend kegger or holiday BBQ. With recipes like "Kill Your Idols Cornbread" p. 77, "Hobo Franks & Beans," p. 34 and "Booze Holes" (Gin-drenched donuts balls) p. 103, these gents gotcha covered with everything from salad to dessert.

The book itself reflects the attitude on its pages. It pops with vibrant, glossy color photos and has a layout that's both easy and fun to read. Lust For Leaf is broken down into sections like Taco Zone - everything you need to add authentic south-of-the-border spice to your fiesta,  Bro-tein - manly meat alts like burgers, wieners and Seitan, and Pizza Pool Party - a how-to for making fresh pizza pies on the grill. Plus there are ice cream, pie, tart and pastry recipes in the dessert section that'll have you drooling like a special needs kid.

Not every recipe is straight up Vegan, however a helpful "V" stamp alerts you to which ones are cruelty-free. Alex and Evan created this book specifically with the backyard grill in mind, so many of the recipes encourage you to fire up those mesquite coals. Unfortunately since I'm currently kickin' it in a tiny one-bedroom with no grill, I had try one of the recipes I knew I could make in my kitchen.

Kaleslaw, p. 70, is super simple to prepare and even comes with a music and beer pairing: Lagunitas Little Sumpin' Wild and "Raw Ramp" by T. Rex. It took me 30 minutes from start to finish and it tuned out great. My favorite part is the slight kick you get thanks to the Louisiana hot sauce and dijon mustard in the dressing mix. The recipe as shown in the book serves 15, so I cut everything in half.

Lust For Leaf is one of those essential vegan cookbooks. You won't find anything necessarily  "healthy" inside, just good old fashion summer comfort food. This is the cookbook for people who know how to have a good time, enjoy getting wasted in the sunshine and crave wicked tasty rations hot off the grill. I'm looking forward to whipping up more recipes from Lust For Leaf, especially the Summer Seitan, Peach Ketchup and Pea Pod Pesto. Step one: get a grill!

1 comment:

  1. Great review! My wife and I eat mostly veg/vegan so I'm going to buy this cookbook right away. It seems to have the same irreverent attitude as Bourdain, Chang and friends. Cheers, Lyle