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Mississippi Vegan: Recipes and Stories from a Southern Boy's Heart: A Cookbook

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Celebrate the gorgeous and delicious possibilities of plant-based Southern cuisine. Inspired by the landscape and flavors of his childhood on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, Timothy Pakron found his heart, soul, and calling in cooking the Cajun, Creole, and southern classics of his youth. In his debut cookbook, he shares 125 plant-based recipes, all of which substitute ingr Celebrate the gorgeous and delicious possibilities of plant-based Southern cuisine. Inspired by the landscape and flavors of his childhood on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, Timothy Pakron found his heart, soul, and calling in cooking the Cajun, Creole, and southern classics of his youth. In his debut cookbook, he shares 125 plant-based recipes, all of which substitute ingredients without sacrificing depth of flavor and reveal the secret tradition of veganism in southern cooking. Finding ways to re-create his experiences growing up in the South--making mud pies and admiring the deep pink azaleas--on the plate, Pakron looks to history and nature as his guides to creating the richest food possible. Filled with as many evocative photographs and stories as easy-to-follow recipes, Mississippi Vegan is an ode to the transporting and ethereal beauty of the food and places you love.


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Celebrate the gorgeous and delicious possibilities of plant-based Southern cuisine. Inspired by the landscape and flavors of his childhood on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, Timothy Pakron found his heart, soul, and calling in cooking the Cajun, Creole, and southern classics of his youth. In his debut cookbook, he shares 125 plant-based recipes, all of which substitute ingr Celebrate the gorgeous and delicious possibilities of plant-based Southern cuisine. Inspired by the landscape and flavors of his childhood on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, Timothy Pakron found his heart, soul, and calling in cooking the Cajun, Creole, and southern classics of his youth. In his debut cookbook, he shares 125 plant-based recipes, all of which substitute ingredients without sacrificing depth of flavor and reveal the secret tradition of veganism in southern cooking. Finding ways to re-create his experiences growing up in the South--making mud pies and admiring the deep pink azaleas--on the plate, Pakron looks to history and nature as his guides to creating the richest food possible. Filled with as many evocative photographs and stories as easy-to-follow recipes, Mississippi Vegan is an ode to the transporting and ethereal beauty of the food and places you love.

30 review for Mississippi Vegan: Recipes and Stories from a Southern Boy's Heart: A Cookbook

  1. 4 out of 5

    Mary

    I got this book solely based on the intriguing title. I don’t think of Mississippi and vegans . . . But obviously my biases have limited my view. And this book doesn’t just surprise by challenging my expectations of southern food but Pakron approaches this cookbook in a unique way, without the help of professionals. He, his friends and family wrote the book, compiled the recipes and took the pics. Most of the recipes, Pakron indicates, come from his childhood. The book combines recipes and pictu I got this book solely based on the intriguing title. I don’t think of Mississippi and vegans . . . But obviously my biases have limited my view. And this book doesn’t just surprise by challenging my expectations of southern food but Pakron approaches this cookbook in a unique way, without the help of professionals. He, his friends and family wrote the book, compiled the recipes and took the pics. Most of the recipes, Pakron indicates, come from his childhood. The book combines recipes and pictures designed to create for the reader a sense of Mississippi vegan eating, which Pakron argues, is actually a natural approach to the bounty of fruit and veggies offered by Mississippi. Pakron’s voice is buddy humor mixed with inspirational. The color pictures are simple, food focused, and many recipes do not have a picture. But don’t get the idea that the pictures aren’t good; they highlight the food in a simple, attractive way. Pakron has put quite a bit of effort into creating these recipes (many of which have long lists of ingredients) to be not just accessible to most cooks but also inspiring, and, he hopes, largely unavailable online. And, if you are thinking Alice Waters approach to veggies, stripped to their core essence, think again. These are vegan recipes with verve: spices, herbs, sauces abound to step up flavors. His creole Chex mix has 16 flavor additions, for example! Pakron set out to create a unique cookbook (popcorn tofu anyone?), and he does. Pakron provides a pantry section, and there are many ingredients most people may find difficult to access (ume plum vinegar, kombu and Kaplan namak, for example). He does not provide suggestions for substitutes. If you are already vegan, maybe this pantry list won’t be so daunting. Pakron refers you to his website (mississippivegan.com) for resources. He also suggests that you don’t let the absence of an ingredient stop you from making a recipe. Give it shot without. His pantry includes many ready made veg products like vegan cheeses, mayo, butter and meats. I’m not vegan, and I’m likely to just sub those out for the real thing. For mot recipes this works fine, and the recipes are worth doing not vegan, like the garlic cheese grits casserole with corn chips on top: what a great idea! He’s especially high on nutritional yeast, which appears in almost every savory recipe. There is a short list of kitchen equipment he notes that most people might not have like a mandoline and cheesecloth. He includes tips on most recipes that are pretty basic like look for non-GMO corn products. I appreciate his suggestion to wash mushrooms and dry them in the salad spinner. In general, this is a casual approach to cooking that emphasizes enjoying both the prep and the eating. Some recipes are really long like those for meat subs like barley sausage. In the baked goods, in general, he just subs out butter and adds some kind of coconut product and subs out cows milk for non-animal product milk. While this is a southern cooking book, many of the recipes are not particularly southern. You’ll find five recipes for vegan gumbo, including one that’s gluten free, but there is also an eggplant couscous casserole, spaghetti pie and grilled avocado kimchi sandwiches. If you are looking for very flavorful, ingredient heavy vegan food, this is the cookbook for you

  2. 5 out of 5

    Meredith

    Added to my to-do list today after sitting in my window seat and gobbling up this book, cover to cover: - Write to Timothy Pakron. Befriend him. Ask him to take me mushroom hunting. - Try the gumbo. Tell dad. - Make the toasted pecan waffles for Adam. WITH the bananas foster. - Finally schedule a brunch/tea party for the girls. Make the crispy tofu breakfast sandwich. - Grab some figs the next time you're at Nalls. I was raised on my dad's cajun cooking. Recently, though, I've had a desire (more like Added to my to-do list today after sitting in my window seat and gobbling up this book, cover to cover: - Write to Timothy Pakron. Befriend him. Ask him to take me mushroom hunting. - Try the gumbo. Tell dad. - Make the toasted pecan waffles for Adam. WITH the bananas foster. - Finally schedule a brunch/tea party for the girls. Make the crispy tofu breakfast sandwich. - Grab some figs the next time you're at Nalls. I was raised on my dad's cajun cooking. Recently, though, I've had a desire (more like a literal gut feeling) to go vegan, or at least vegetarian. It's made me anxious, believing that would be the end to my ability to carry our family's culinary torch into the next generation. So when I saw this on a shelf at Old Town Books, I immediately picked it up, plopped into the blue wooden chair in the cookbook nook, and read the introduction. Of course there was no leaving without it. Timmy's right: Cajun and Creole cooking are "the greatest culinary achievements of the United States. What comes to my mind is buttery rice; an abundance of celery, onions, and green bell peppers [the Trinity, as my Dad taught us growing up!]; bay leaves; cayenne peppers; paprika; mirlitons; and Creole tomatoes. Now, let me ask: Are all of the ingredients I have listed in the last two paragraphs plant-based and therefore, vegan? The answer is yes." It warms my heart with pride for my roots, and it gives me hope. I'm going to try all of the things!! Toasted pecan waffles, fig and shallot tart, vegan gumbo, red beans and rice, bouillon tea... I think I'm going to pass out just thinking about it.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Sue Cartwright

    This is an exquisite cookery book, a work of art. Mississippi Vegan is not only a colourful and beautifully presented cookery book brimming with creative ideas, beautiful food, fascinating sources of vegan store cupboard essentials and treasures, but also an amazing story about being a vegan; having a passion for life, nature and health; and celebrating the goodness of wholesome and naturally produced cuisine. For someone who loves vegetarian food and has an interest in taking the leap towards veg This is an exquisite cookery book, a work of art. Mississippi Vegan is not only a colourful and beautifully presented cookery book brimming with creative ideas, beautiful food, fascinating sources of vegan store cupboard essentials and treasures, but also an amazing story about being a vegan; having a passion for life, nature and health; and celebrating the goodness of wholesome and naturally produced cuisine. For someone who loves vegetarian food and has an interest in taking the leap towards veganism as a new source of healthy food, or a new way of life, Mississippi Vegan is a treasure trove of information. The ingredients and techniques required to make or bake such mouth watering recipes are set out and explained with perfect clarity so that you understand the essence of vegan cooking and how to master it well. The mississippivegan-dot-com website is an invaluable accompaniment for the book, in particular, the 'shop' section for finding product recommendations and where to buy essential vegan ingredients, condiments, store cupboard items and utensils. You can also sign up for blog updates to receive further inspiration, new recipes and tips on how to make the most delicious meals, snacks and treats. I am so looking forward to moving into my new home, stocking up my pantry and cooking my first vegan meals for family and friends. Fabulous!

  4. 5 out of 5

    Ashley Chew

    So this book is really beautiful, all the photographs are really nice. Honestly, for me, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to keep this one though. There are only maybe 10 recipes or so that I marked as wanting to make. Mostly because I tend to cook on the healthy side and this is definitely not a a health conscious cookbook. It uses A LOT of oil, like a lot. For example the gumbo recipe calls for 1 cup of peanut oil. Now I totally get that this is a book of Mississippi comfort style foods and I wasn’t So this book is really beautiful, all the photographs are really nice. Honestly, for me, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to keep this one though. There are only maybe 10 recipes or so that I marked as wanting to make. Mostly because I tend to cook on the healthy side and this is definitely not a a health conscious cookbook. It uses A LOT of oil, like a lot. For example the gumbo recipe calls for 1 cup of peanut oil. Now I totally get that this is a book of Mississippi comfort style foods and I wasn’t expecting a book of salads or anything but I was surprised on the large amounts of oils and (vegan) butters were used. I will say though that I tonight I made the Dirty Rice recipe and it was very delicious. One other thing to note is that some of the recipes are a little time consuming. Later this week I’m going to be making the red beans and rice. Which I think have to cook for several hours just something to keep in mind.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Liz

    The writer of this book is funny and fairly authentic to the style of cooking. The grits casserole looks great. I think it could be sexed up with a little miso or a stock, though. I had two minor issues with recipes the book: 1. On pg 107 he implies that Old Bay is an acceptable spice for the deep south and that is just not true. Scratch it out and replace it with some Chachere's or Louisiana seasoning instead. 2. The lagniappe and addition of the tomato (and tomato paste) in the succotash on pg. 1 The writer of this book is funny and fairly authentic to the style of cooking. The grits casserole looks great. I think it could be sexed up with a little miso or a stock, though. I had two minor issues with recipes the book: 1. On pg 107 he implies that Old Bay is an acceptable spice for the deep south and that is just not true. Scratch it out and replace it with some Chachere's or Louisiana seasoning instead. 2. The lagniappe and addition of the tomato (and tomato paste) in the succotash on pg. 135 are trying to cover for the missing third sister from traditional succotash --squash. Just use squash.

  6. 5 out of 5

    matt

    Love this book. Very beautiful photography, and lots of great recipes. I’ve enjoyed the gumbo and cheese straws the most, but also loved the hummingbird cake and biscuits. Be sure to check his website for errors in the recipes until the second edition comes out — it caused some trouble when making a root gratin. I do feel there have been a few instances where he could have explained things better - and that is why I can’t give a full five star rating.

  7. 4 out of 5

    David

    Despite many of the recipes taking some time and effort, all of them have delivered in taste. Would definitely recommend this book.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    Wow! Beautiful and informative. Not just an average vegan cookbook. This one has a unique twist on southern soul food. Now I see why the Mississippi Vegan is so popular!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Constantreader

    If you're va professional chef living in a big city... I'm an exceptionally good household cook with substantial skills. These are delicious-sounding recipes that call for difficult-to-source ingredients, tools, or techniques available mostly to professionals or major-city dwellers [chickpea miso or satsumas, anyone? Julienne peeler (I've never seen one)? Cast iron baking tray?]. Many are time-consuming and demand substantial skills. Many would be very expensive for most of us. Photos by this pro If you're va professional chef living in a big city... I'm an exceptionally good household cook with substantial skills. These are delicious-sounding recipes that call for difficult-to-source ingredients, tools, or techniques available mostly to professionals or major-city dwellers [chickpea miso or satsumas, anyone? Julienne peeler (I've never seen one)? Cast iron baking tray?]. Many are time-consuming and demand substantial skills. Many would be very expensive for most of us. Photos by this professional food sylist are uncaptioned in my Kindle version (I know, who buys a Kindle cookbook to actually use), so sometimes impossible to identify. I don't resent a $1.99 special (much), but be warned. Very few can cook from this.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Mallory

    My friend asked me recently what cookbook of mine I would choose to own if I could only have one. The answer was Mississippi Vegan. I love this book so much. From the anecdotes of being a southern spirit to the delicious recipes... it’s great through and through. The recipes of the south are deep engrained into my being, but being mostly plant based, it’s hard to cook without all the dairy and meats that take up most of southern cooking. This book has perfected a lot of my southern meals and I’m My friend asked me recently what cookbook of mine I would choose to own if I could only have one. The answer was Mississippi Vegan. I love this book so much. From the anecdotes of being a southern spirit to the delicious recipes... it’s great through and through. The recipes of the south are deep engrained into my being, but being mostly plant based, it’s hard to cook without all the dairy and meats that take up most of southern cooking. This book has perfected a lot of my southern meals and I’m so thankful for that! The design and photography is all beautiful as well!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Cait

    To be fair: I haven't cooked anything from this book, so who knows how good (or not) it really is. I'm not crazy about veganism (as a concept), and I'm not crazy about recreations of meat filled dishes without meat, so I'm def not the target market. That said, I am always excited for another use for chayote (this book has a stew that is genuinely intriguing). Full review to come on actually trying the recipe. To be fair: I haven't cooked anything from this book, so who knows how good (or not) it really is. I'm not crazy about veganism (as a concept), and I'm not crazy about recreations of meat filled dishes without meat, so I'm def not the target market. That said, I am always excited for another use for chayote (this book has a stew that is genuinely intriguing). Full review to come on actually trying the recipe.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Lauren

    A beautiful cookbook which was obviously created with a lot of care and love. I have made the dirty rice with smoky baked tofu, the sesame-roasted brussels, and the crispy garlic potatoes. They were all delicious and had some seasonings and flavors I do not typically use.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Peggy

    I thoroughly enjoyed the stories. I love a man who loves his Mom. I’m not a vegan and not even a vegetarian, but I cooked and loved: Slow cooked red beans and rice Angelica kitchen fluffy corn bread Turnip greens I have several additional recipes I will try soon.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Kathy

    This is a beautiful cookbook with great stories and pictures. The peanut stew with greens (I used swiss chard) may have been the most delicious stew/soup I have ever made. Will use these recipes over and over.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Leigh

    Lucky me got the long-awaited Mississippi Vegan cookbook for Christmas, and I've already made several recipes from it. Being a half-Southerner (NC) who lived for a spell in Alabama, these recipes and flavors are close to my heart and palate. This book will get lots of play in my kitchen. Lucky me got the long-awaited Mississippi Vegan cookbook for Christmas, and I've already made several recipes from it. Being a half-Southerner (NC) who lived for a spell in Alabama, these recipes and flavors are close to my heart and palate. This book will get lots of play in my kitchen.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Aja Marsh

    some great southern recipes that are hard to find vegan anyway. beautifully photographed and designed book. concerned about some of the recipes potentially having errors, but we'll try a few out and see! some great southern recipes that are hard to find vegan anyway. beautifully photographed and designed book. concerned about some of the recipes potentially having errors, but we'll try a few out and see!

  17. 4 out of 5

    Shannon Wommack

    Great recipes and beautiful pictures.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Carmen Paxton

    This is a great addition to my vegan cookbook collection. Many unique recipes & loads of southern charm.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Dede

    Check out the Humming bird cake Delicious

  20. 5 out of 5

    Leonard

    An unusual collection of vegan recipes from the deep south go the USA. I found a couple here that sounded good.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Janet

    I love this book! Suspect the author would be really fun to know.

  22. 5 out of 5

    M

    Decided to buy a copy after borrowing from the library and trying a few recipes and liking them all!

  23. 5 out of 5

    carla

    Gorgeous photos and some nice stories. Recipes look fairly approachable.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Sophia

    Extremely well-written, gorgeous photography, actually useful and usable recipes... seriously what more could anyone ask for?!

  25. 4 out of 5

    Sps

    The text sounds a little like if Bitty from Check, Please!: #Hockey, Vol. 1 wrote a cookbook. The text sounds a little like if Bitty from Check, Please!: #Hockey, Vol. 1 wrote a cookbook.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Franziska

    I bought this cookbook when I didn't actually know anything about Timothy Pakron and hadn't tried a single of his recipes yet. And boy, was I in for a good surprise! First off, the style of the book is simply beautiful. Lots of pretty pictures, and also lots of personal stories from the author that really added color and personality. Then there's the recipes, and they're just so good! Most of what I made so far has been really delicious. The only downsides: Some recipes rely heavily on margarine I bought this cookbook when I didn't actually know anything about Timothy Pakron and hadn't tried a single of his recipes yet. And boy, was I in for a good surprise! First off, the style of the book is simply beautiful. Lots of pretty pictures, and also lots of personal stories from the author that really added color and personality. Then there's the recipes, and they're just so good! Most of what I made so far has been really delicious. The only downsides: Some recipes rely heavily on margarine, mayonnaise etc. and aren't exactly "health food", and some recipes can be quite expensive to make (lots of dried mushrooms, for example – if you haven't thought to order them in bulk and have to rely on the tiny pricey packages at your local supermarket, you might have to spend a lot).

  27. 4 out of 5

    Kate W

    Fabulous gumbo recipes and lovely savory cast iron skillet cornbread. His hummingbird cake is my new favorite cake.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Whitney

  29. 5 out of 5

    Andrea

  30. 5 out of 5

    Akiba Perry

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