Culinary Contributor Laura Kurella takes a look at three chefs who are leading in the plant-based cooking space, elevating it to new levels, with her review of The Wicked Healthy Cookbook. You’ll also find a link to one of her favorite recipes from the book below. —Editor
The Food-Body Connection
Variety is the spice of life and, while we humans all possess varied interests and tastes, the desire for our spirits to each dwell within a healthy body is one thing that makes us all like-minded.
With what seems to be a never-ending stream of information from scientists and researchers from studies on food that show just how profoundly what we eat relates to our overall health, I am not surprised that all the data suggests that we would all be much healthier if we pushed the contents of our plates toward being predominantly plant forward or what I like to call, “Eating directly from the hands of God – straight from the earth He gave us!”
This now global “plant-forward” food trend is a simple game plan that is endorsed by what seems to be every doctor and health organization in the world. However, many people see the world of plants as plain and not so palate-pleasing, which is why I am thrilled that chefs Chad and Derek Sarno and David Joachim have joined forces to share their special ways for making killer plant-based meals in a new cookbook, The Wicked Healthy Cookbook (Grand Central Life & Style).
Eight Percent Healthy, Twenty Percent Wicked!
Offering sumptuous recipes and equally gorgeous photos, I appreciate that the chefs include must-have tips on everything from cooking oil-free (if you’re into that) to organizing an efficient kitchen. Celebrating the central role of beautiful, crave-able food for our health and vitality, this book serves up 150 different recipes that dance from everyday meals to fancy dinner parties that, while healthy, appear to be indulgences that will make you drool like Barbecued Maitake Steaks.
“This is a deeply satisfying plant-pusher dish—truly eye-opening for hard-core meat eaters,” stated Derek Sarno. “When you press and sear a big, fluffy maitake mushroom, it develops a dense, meaty texture and satisfying browned flavor…especially if you barbecue it low and slow with some wood chunks or chips, and baste it with a barbecue sauce!”
Noting that their plan for the cookbook was, “To make the recipes 80 percent healthy and 20 percent wicked so you’ll be 100 percent sexy—that’s the Wicked Healthy way,”
I found that the knowledge and know-how served up by these well-educated and culinary-experienced men makes this cookbook such a tasty read that it makes you wish you could lick its pages!
Here now is one of their very meaty ways to delve deeply and deliciously into their special way with a recipe for Barbecued Maitake Steaks.