Frequently Asked Questions
What is this mini-cookbook?
The mini-cookbook is a sampling of recipes and information designed to introduce my cooking philosophy and style. It contains guidance on fitting cooking into your life, foundational tips and essential techniques including sprouting, and lists the tools and equipment and ingredients you'll need to get started.
The mini book is 37 pages and contains 12 recipes that were among the favorites at Julia's Kitchen.
red lentil veggie pancakes
sprouted chickpea hummus
sprouted grain muffins with berries and cream
I chose to use the term plant-rich intentionally on my book because I find it to be a directed, yet inclusive term. Everyone will benefit from eating an abundance of plants AND if your body is asking for other foods in addition, there is space for them too.
Is this a cookbook for vegetarians?
This is a cookbook for everyone. All of the recipes are 100% plant-based because this is where my inspiration lies. Also vegetables and other plants should be the primary focus of any diet, regardless of whether meat is also a part. Beyond that, my books, and my philosophy in general, are about using our resources (both natural and personal) wisely and efficiently and being thoughtful and intention in our food (and other) choices. My recipes and techniques can elevate any healthy diet because they are focused on best use of ingredients, finding ways to weave cooking into busy lives, and feeling grounded and connected to what is real in life.
What if I want to include meat and other animal products in my meals?
These recipes and ideas are still for you. I am offering recipes and what I have learned in order to empower a more plant-rich approach to food because I truly believe that is the best way to serve our health, each other, and our environment. However, we have individual differences and needs and those are to be honored. If you will enjoy your meal more by adding a spoonful of ghee to your kitchari, topping your veggie pancakes with an egg, or stirring cheese, bacon, sausage into your veggie quiche/fritatta, go for it.
What does nutrient-dense mean?
It sounds kind of boring, but really it's awesome. Our bodies are busy; they have a lot to manage in any given moment. Giving them foods that are easy to digest and full of nutrients leaves them the energy they need to support all of the other systems that keep us healthy and strong.
Is sprouting necessary?
You can make all of my recipes without sprouting the ingredients (with some minor adjustments), but once you understand how much value this process adds and how easy it is, I think you'll agree it's well worth doing.
Do I need a lot of fancy equipment?
My recipes require basic equipment such as pots, pans, a knife, a grater, and a good blender. I highly recommend a high-powered blender if possible. My preference is a Vitamix, though I know people who are thrilled with their Blend-Tec, and Ninja offers a more economical option. I've had my Vitamix for 20 years and it still works great after daily use, even restaurant use, so I believe it's a better long term option than a standard blender if you can swing it in your budget. You only need the most basic model. If you have any trouble figuring out how to get something done, please ask me and I'm sure we can find a way together.
Do you use weird ingredients?
My recipes are made from vegetables, beans, grains, nuts, seeds, olive or coconut oil, and spices. I am all about diversity, so I may use some different beans and grains than you are used to, but all can generally be found at your local natural foods store and often your neighborhood supermarket. If you have questions about where to source something, I can likely help you out and will be happy to do so.
What about flavor?
Personally, I rely on a balance of flavors primarily from the main ingredients and use herbs, spices, salt, and other flavors judiciously to enhance, without overpowering, them. Of course, you can kick up the spices to your personal taste if you like.
Do I have to spend all my free time in the kitchen to make these recipes?
Absolutely not, but it will take some time to get organized and create a rhythm for yourself. The full book will provide a lot more specific guidance on how to make this work in your life. The main idea is create a sort of rotation, where you prepare staples in bulk and develop a revolving stock of staples such as cooked grains and beans, sauces, batters, etc. Of course, you always have to have vegetables on hand. Even if, like me, you aren't a planner, having some structure will pave the way to creativity as you learn how to put meals together and create a foundation and space to be creative with what you have on hand.