The Inspired Vegan | Bryant Terry


Time for an inspired mid-summer meat intermission.

The Inspired Vegan: Seasonal Ingredients, Creative Recipes, Mouthwatering Menus

TITLE: The Inspired Vegan
AUTHOR: Bryant Terry
PUBLISHER: Da Capo Lifelong Books

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Featured Ingredient: Sweet PotatoSweet potatoes & carrot ready to roast By SaucyGlo
The sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas) is a dicotyledonous plant that belongs to the family Convolvulaceae. Its large, starchy, sweet-tasting, tuberous roots are an important root vegetable. The young leaves and shoots are sometimes eaten as greens. Of the approximately 50 genera and more than 1,000 species of Convolvulaceae, I. batatas is the only crop plant of major importance—some others are used locally, but many are actually poisonous. The sweet potato is only distantly related to the potato (Solanum tuberosum). [Wikipedia]

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First Impressions
This book is comfortable. Even if you’re not familiar with vegan cooking. It makes you feel like you’re part of the club. There is a welcoming and understated way about it that makes it easy to casually leaf through. It’s mainly produced in black and white. There is one section, around mid-book, of color food images by Jennifer Martiné. There are also other gray scale drawings/illustrations/photos scattered throughout (credited p.201). The book is divided into manageable sections. The Basics touches on ingredients that are used to complete the recipes that follow. There are also a variety of “master recipes” in this section.

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What You’ll Find Inside (aka Table of Contents)
Menus (Spring, Summer, Winter, Autumn)

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Music is obviously a BIG part of Bryant’s life. Here’s a little of his “inspiration”. Listen and be inspired yourself.

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The Best Of The Book (Our Favorite Recipes)

Strawberry-Basil Agua Fresca Gumbo Zav
Tortillas stuffed with Swiss chard, currants and spicy guacamole Gingered black sesame-seed brittle
Double garlic rice Paprika Peanuts
Velvety grits with sautéed summer squash, heirloom tomatoes and parsley-walnut pesto Rustic Johnny cakes with caramelized onion relish


I love Indian food. I’m a late comer to the cuisine. But, it now ranks near the top of hit my list. One of my favorite restaurants, Chutney’s Etc. in Sarasota Florida, serves a basmati rice that I flip for. I’ve been trying to get the actual recipe from the owner for years. No dice. Now, I think I may have found something that comes pretty darn close, Yellow Basmati Rice (p. 71). It might not be my friend Ash’s exact dish. But, it should take care of my cravings in between visits. The Sliced Cucumber and Mint Salad (p. 91) is a nice cool starter for a hot day. And, the Citrus-Hibiscus Sorbet (p. 137) completes a summertime meal with a flash of flavor.

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Special Features
The Inspired Vegan: Seasonal Ingredients, Creative Recipes, Mouthwatering MenusWhen you first flip through The Inspired Vegan it doesn’t appear to have any special sections or callouts. Boy, how wrong can a first look be? This book is loaded with nice extras that have been thoughtfully woven into the fabric of the book itself. It’s a very unassuming way to do it. Just like the book. There is a fantastic list of the authors “Inspirations (p. xxi)”. Eclectic. And, a nice insight into what will follow. A large percentage of the recipes have their own personalized inspirations listed on the page. Delightful music and books abound in these sidebars! These are obviously inspirations from Bryant’s life, not mine. So, being a lover of all genres of music, I was listening for days to sounds that were new to my world. An unexpected and appreciated bonus. The seasonal chapters are divided into individual menus. For a non-vegan like myself, this makes putting together a coherent vegan meal a snap. Your guests will be convinced you do it every day.

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This cookbook is a labor of love and as the title suggests, Inspired. Even for the meat lover there are many dishes you could combine with a more traditional menu and have a little something for everyone. Bryant Terry is dedicated to bringing healthy food to everyone. This especially includes communities that are traditionally underserved. The author has a passion for the subject of access to nutritious food for all. It’s a passion that these communities have benefitted from in a real way. His love for his craft and his community shines through in living color on every black and white page.

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Culinary Expertise Required: 6
1= Boiling Water (novice) 10= Liquid Nitrogen (expert)

The Inspired Vegan: Seasonal Ingredients, Creative Recipes, Mouthwatering Menu

Resources, Links and Press
Bryant Terry’s Website
Bryant Terry Interview – Grist
Bryant Terry on Culinate
Follow Bryant on Twitter

2 thoughts on “The Inspired Vegan | Bryant Terry

  1. Pingback: Yellow Rice, That’s Mighty Nice. | The Cookbook Man

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