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As the title suggests, the recipes in this vegetarian cookbook are organized by season and emphasize the use of in season produce. Each section of the books begins with a summary of the major Wiccan festivals of that season, and gives a full menu for each celebration. Seasonal recipes then follow, listed by course (beverages and appetizers, soups, entrees, etc.)

 

Having received this book for review in the summer, I tried out the Savory Red Potato Salad, which uses a dressing of yogurt, horseradish and Dijon mustard to bind the ingredients. I enjoyed it served chilled, but the author says that it can also be served warm, (her preference) and at room temperature. The Yellow Tomato and Portobello Mushroom Pizza was also very tasty, but I was happy to be able to visit a local farmer's market to buy the yellow tomatoes and bulk basil at a reasonable price, and just a single portobello mushroom. If I had had to purchase all the ingredients at the grocery store, at least where I live, this would have turned into a very pricey little pizza.

 

As we head into fall, I'm looking forward to trying out some of the soup recipes in the next section of the book, including Potato and Carrot Soup, Spicy Black Bean Soup and Piquant Corn and Tomato Chowder. I'm planning on serving the Stuffed Acorn Squash, the stuffing for which is made from cornbread with onions, celery, mushrooms, pine nuts and cranberries, at Thanksgiving as an entree for vegetarian family members.

 

The full menus suggested for the Wiccan holidays are a bit too ambitious for me, but I'm sure I'll try out some of the dishes from each menu on my coven. This is the first time I've found a recipe for May wine that actually seems doable. The ingredient lists for some of the recipes appear overwhelming at first glance, but a closer reading often reveals many of the ingredients to be seasonings, which makes things seem to be more manageable.  Beginning to build a "Vegetarian Goddess' Pantry" from the list of items beginning on page xiii will also lessen "ingredient shock" when considering a recipe.

 

While some of the recipes, especially those in the summer section, can be prepared rather quickly, the preparation and cooking time for many of the dishes is well over an hour, making them, for me, at least, more suited for weekend meals than a working day dinner.

 

~review by Jackie Gorman

Author: Karri Ann Allrich

Llewellyn Worldwide, 2003

pp. 208, $14.95

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