Around Christmas time last year, I was gifted two recipe books; Deliciously Ella and The Oh She Glows Cookbook. Both contain plant-based and dairy free recipes and The Deliciously Ella book is plant-based, dairy-free and gluten-free. You don’t need to be on a plant-based only diet to enjoy the recipes in these books as there is something for everyone.
I personally am not new to plant-based (I have always eaten this way) eating, however I am fairly new to the concept of using gluten-free ingredients and gluten-free baking/cooking. I have been interested in this, not only because I have a family member who has a gluten allergy, but also because many of my children’s friends and children in their classroom at school have dairy and gluten allergies. I want to be able to make foods that everyone can enjoy whether it be at a family gathering, children’s parties, for play-dates or when I help out with baking at my children’s school in the classroom, which I did last school term.
The Deliciously Ella book:
Deliciously Ella is the first in a series of plant-based, dairy-free and gluten-free cookbooks written by Ella Woodward. Lucky for me, a friend has her other recipe books (Deliciously Ella Every Day and Deliciously Ella with Friends) which she is going to lend me to read, so I will be able to mention what they are like in a future blog post. I will be interested to see how the other books differ. Both her books and Angela’s Oh She Glows books seem to be popular plant-based recipe books.
Deliciously Ella Book Contents;
- My story (Ella’s background story as to why she follows this particular way of eating.
- Getting started- Kitchen basics (her favourite ingredients) and equipment list
- Grains- (Quinoa, buckwheat, brown rice, wild rice, oats)
- Nuts and Seeds- (almonds, brazil nuts, cashews, hazelnuts, pecans, pine nuts, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and chia seeds). Ella doesn’t use peanuts or tofu in her recipes.
- Legumes and pulses
- Smoothies and juices
- Living the Deliciously Ella way (Menu suggestions)
- Frequently asked questions
Each section of this book whether it be Grains or Nuts and Seeds, gives a list of the main ingredients Ella likes to use and why, including tips and tricks and follows with recipes on how to include these ingredients. My favourite part of this book is the ‘Living the Deliciously Ella Way‘ at the back of the book which gives you ideas (menu plan) how to adapt these recipes to a social situation such as a brunch, picnics and healthy food on the go, or dinner party with friends and family. I also love the section she includes on how to make some basic plant-based ‘staples’ such as home-made salt blends, apple puree, date puree, dairy-free milks, strawberry jam with chia, dips and sauces for example.
This books contains simple and decadent recipes with some full page colour images. Not all of the recipes have photos, but most do. I think this is a lovely book that is beautifully designed (look at the front cover of this book) and I am personally keen to try all of the recipes. So far I have made the Quinoa pizza crust, Quinoa tabbouleh, mexican quinoa bowl, creamy coconut porridge, almond and chia energy bites, granola bars, superfood crackers, raw brownies, lentil bolognese and the coconut Thai curry.
To get a feel for the type of recipes in this book, you can look at the Deliciously Ella recipe blog. I have followed this food blog for quite some time.
The Oh She Glows Cookbook:
The Oh She Glows Cookbook is the first in a series of popular plant-based books by Angela Liddon. This recipe book contains lots of simple, classic recipes. Angela does use tofu and peanuts in her recipes and does have many gluten-free and soy-free recipe options. I mentioned above that The Deliciously Ella book doesn’t contain tofu and peanuts in her recipes.
The first recipes I made from this book was this healing rooibos tea, her summertime cherry-basil bruschetta, a strawberry-mango guacamole and her empowered noodle bowl. There is some really lovely salad recipes in this book too. I don’t have much of a sweet tooth, so I do tend to focus more on the sides, snacks and mains.
The Oh She Glow Book Contents:
- Introduction/About the book
- My natural food pantry
- My favourite kitchen tools and equipment
- Smoothies, juice and tea
- Power Snacks
- Homemade staples
- Basic Cooking chart
My favourite part of Angela’s book is the home-made staples section at the back of the book. Everything from gravies, dressings, how to make your own plant-based flours (almond, oat and buckwheat), vegetable broth and cashew cream, to mayonnaise and granola. For me, I love a cookbook that has a DIY staple section and a pantry primer. This book has both.
My daughter who is almost six years of age, loves both of Angela’s books and is always asking to look through them. I think she loves to look at the full colour, full page food photographs. I think she also likes to ask what ingredients are in each recipe.
You can take a look at Angela’s Oh She Glows recipe blog for more inspiration.
Personally I already had most of the ingredients the recipes in both of these books call for such as (apple cider vinegar, tamari, coconut oil, raw cacao powder, tahini and miso). I can imagine though if you have not dabbled in plant-based or vegan cooking that it’s possible you may need to source some of the ingredients in these books. You can though, in most cases use alternatives. I do tend to do this when I don’t have or have run out of a specific ingredient. Also If I am trying to make one of the recipes more ‘our family’ friendly I may omit some of the ingredients such as chilli.
Previous plant-based recipe book posts;
- Plant-powered Families by Dreena Burton and Oh She Glows Every Day (second book) by Angela Liddon.