Last holiday season, Jerry James Stone — cook and recipe contributor extraordinaire here on MNN — published “Holidazed: A Cocktail Cookbook for Getting Lit on Christmas” that focused on boozy beverages with a few food recipes to round it out. This year, he’s published another cookbook, “A Vegan Survival Guide for the Holidays,” a digital book that’s focused on food with a few cocktails recipes to round it out.
Aside from the ratio of drink-to-food recipes, there are two additional differences between this book and the previous one. The first is that “A Vegan Survival Guide for the Holidays” is totally free. The second is that Stone worked with a collaborator on this book, actor, director and environmentalist Ed Begley Jr. Stone and Begley decided to work together after Begley got a look at “Holidazed” and liked what he saw.
“Ed is just a pleasure to work with,” Stone said. “He is passionate, engaging and very positive. He has all of the best attributes of an activist. He wants to save the world, and working with him makes me want to also. Well, even more than I already did! But most importantly, he's genuine. When I emailed him to be a part of this, he got back to me within seconds and was so eager for the project, I felt I really had to step up my game and create something amazing.”
The survival guide contains 15 recipes that together will help cooks create an entire vegan holiday meal or add some vegan options to the menu if the guest list contains a mix of vegans, vegetarians and omnivores. Every recipe was tested using organic, locally grown produce, and it’s all seasonal — beets in the hummus, apples and squash in the soup, cranberries and persimmons in the salad and even Brussels sprouts in the mac & cheese.
In the foreword, Begley says that he has 22 years of eating vegan under his canvas belt and this book is a way he can share some of his vegan “survival skills” and help vegans “navigate any holiday table covered with hams and turkeys.”
To replace those hams and turkeys with an animal product-free main course, Stone created a Butternut “Meatloaf” with Cranberry Sriracha Glaze (pictured at left). If anyone cooked an entire holiday dinner from this cookbook, it would be the only dish on the table that would give away that the meal was vegan. The rest of the recipes that Stone and Begley collaborated on could, as Stone says in his author’s note, “trick those pesky carnivores into eating something plant-based.”
Of course, the recipes aren’t just for the holidays. I have the Roasted Apple and Squash Soup and the Bourbon Glazed Carrots bookmarked to make on any old night.
Head to the Cooking Stoned website to download your free digital copy of “A Vegan Survival Guide for the Holidays.” It downloads as a PDF so you don’t need an ereader or tablet to use it, but it is formatted to work well on a vertically-held tablet. I can navigate through it easily on my iPad when it’s opened through iBooks.
More of Jerry James Stone's recipes on MNN