The Vegetarian Epicure: 262 Recipes by Anna Thomas

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Notes about this book

  • ruthdeutsch on March 28, 2021

    The very first book I bought when we decided to go vegetarian 40 years ago and one I continue to use regularly. Some of the recipes are a bit dairy-heavy for today's taste, but worth an occasional splurge. This is my go-to for comfort food. Still a nice choice for easing into a vegetarian diet.

  • Recluse on January 27, 2011

    A collection of decadent vegetarian recipes that I grew up eating (my mother was vegetarian for many years). I still crave some of the recipes in this book whenever I need comfort food. The baked macaroni and cheese that calls for Fontina is excellent, and the Dal is a staple of cheap but tasty student living.

Notes about Recipes in this book

  • Savory pepper soup

    • Laura on December 21, 2014

      Pg. 66. I used to make this soup about once a week back in the 70s. I loved it so much. I haven't made it in probably 25 years -- I wonder what I would think of it today.

    • ruthdeutsch on March 28, 2021

      A family favorite. It freezes perfectly. At the end of summer when peppers are plentiful I make a huge batch of this soup and freeze it for warming meals throughout the winter. I prefer it a little less spicy, so usually go light on the hot peppers.

  • Irish soda bread

    • radishseed on December 21, 2013

      This bread is a little dry and tough.

    • ruthdeutsch on March 28, 2021

      My goto recipe for Irish Soda Bread. Quick and reliable. I've made it with all white flour, whole wheat, and a mixutre of both. I sometimes add grated cheddar and cardamom for a really tasty loaf.

  • French vegetable salad

    • radishseed on August 20, 2018

      Nice alternative to potato salad. I subbed Chioggia beets for the cauliflower and peas and swapped tarragon for parsley.

  • Bryani

    • radishseed on September 29, 2012

      We ate this with banana raita, which was a creamy, salty, sweet complement to the rice and vegetables in the bryani.

  • Baked polenta

    • ellabee on February 24, 2013


  • Potato curry

    • ellabee on August 27, 2012

      page 256. A great dish for potlucks -- easy and inexpensive while delicious & visually appealing. The potatoes and yogurt handle the heat from the spices, and the peas brighten it. Good room temperature as well as warm, so can serve as a sort of potato salad.

  • Savory cheese and onion pie

    • ellabee on August 20, 2012

      page 210. This was a smash hit when I first made it in 1974, and has stayed a favorite ever since. To take full advantage of the tomato-onion-basil flavors remaining in the skillet after the tomatoes have been added to the pie, pour the cream into the (somewhat cooled) skillet and stir to incorporate the butter and bits; then return liquid to mixing bowl to beat in the egg before pouring over the pie. A successful variation: leeks for onions, red potato slices for tomatoes, thyme and bacon for basil. Another is leeks, summer squash, and chives.

    • bching on December 03, 2020

      It tastes like my 20s! I haven't made this since the 80s but it's just as rich and delicious as I remembered. Only change I'd make is partially blind baking the crust.

  • Marinated bean salad

    • ellabee on August 11, 2017

      p.115. equal oil & vinegar, just a few Tbs sugar.

  • Herb croutons

    • okcook on November 27, 2013

      These are delicious and simple to make. The recipe calls for the whole slices of bread to buttered both sides with the herb mixture and then cut into croutons. Much easier and much more even coating of the croutons with this method.

  • Classic welsh rabbit

    • mcvl on April 03, 2018

      I make this with Guinness stout for a richer, more complex taste.

  • Kasha

    • mcvl on June 17, 2018

      I hadn't made kasha in ages (I like it OK, my husband despises it), so went back to this old recipe. Somehow I had forgotten that you need either to start with a thick base of melted butter or to use a nonstick pan, otherwise you have a hard-to-clean egg mess when you're done. Delicious, though,; I'll have to make it more often.

  • Pizza rustica

    • CynthiasCooking on February 27, 2021

      I love this dish. It's tasty and usually beautiful. I do have difficulty with the shortcrust pastry - it is always WAY too dry to actually do anything with and I always end up adding significantly more liquid. But the lemon juice in it (I've never tried the Marsala) is really good. The crust is a separate recipe, but is called for in this dish.

    • ruthdeutsch on March 28, 2021

      This is a favorite family dish and one I often pull out for company. It's a bit of work to put together, but always tastes great and looks really impressive. I serve it with a green salad to make a complete meal. In our house it's known as "Pizza Pie Pie".

  • Mushrooms berkeley

    • lajaxon on September 13, 2015

      This is an easy, delicious, hearty mushroom recipe. I usually serve it on rice, but potatoes or noodles would work too!

    • ShieldmaidenofRohan on October 17, 2020

      I love this and have been making it for years... So delicious and it smells wonderful when cooking. I usually use more than a pound of mushrooms, maybe 1 1/2, and cut way back on the brown sugar.

  • Three-cheese ramequins

    • ruthdeutsch on March 28, 2021

      Very strongly flavored and very decadent, but delicious in small quantities. Nice served with a big green salad.

  • Cottage cheese pancakes

    • ruthdeutsch on March 28, 2021

      Delicious and work equally well with gluten-free flour.

  • German apple pancake

    • ruthdeutsch on March 28, 2021

      Easy and impressive. I usually serve it with sauted apples or fresh berries and whipped cream. I've used cast iron skillets in three different sizes; the recipe successfully scales both up and down. Batter with one egg in a small skillet makes a nice individual serving.

  • Corn bread

    • ruthdeutsch on March 28, 2021

      Our favorite cornbread recipe. Quick, easy, and always comes out perfectly.

  • Corn and cheddar cheese chowder

    • ruthdeutsch on March 28, 2021

      Very rich, but worth the splurge. Perfect for a cold winter day.

  • Mexican cheese pudding

  • Pastry brisee

    • ruthdeutsch on March 28, 2021

      This is my default pastry recipe for pies and quiche. Easy and always works. Handle gently for the flakiest results.

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Reviews about this book

  • David's Table

    ...there is something downright magical about it. If you are unfamiliar with it, it’s hard to comprehend. But open up a copy and spend some time with it...soon it will work its charms on you.

    Full review

Reviews about Recipes in this Book

  • Sauce bechamel

    • David's Table

      In the original recipe, Anna doesn’t specify the exact quantity of seasonings to use, allowing you to tweak them to your own taste.

      Full review
  • Asparagus pastry

    • David's Table

      Vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike will enjoy this dish. Anna recommends serving it fresh out of the oven. Serve the leftovers for breakfast... It’s just as delicious the next day.

      Full review