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Vegan for the Holidays


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Vegetarianism in the News



May 1, 2011 -- Vegparadise News Bureau

VIP Editor Has Gone Vegan for the Holidays


What does a nut do for an encore? In the case of Zel Allen, author of The Nut Gourmet, she returns to the publishing world with a manuscript for a new book to make its debut in 2012.

Five years in preparation, Gone Vegan for the Holidays has been picked up by Book Publishing Company to be made available to Zel's fans next year. Book Publishing Company shepherded Zel's successful The Nut Gourmet into print in 2006.

Grandma's Plum Pudding The work will spotlight Zel's innovative ideas for holiday meals and will include recipes for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and New Year's celebrations. The 125-recipe, approximately 35,000-word volume will be available in the spring of 2012.

Recognizing that there were very few vegan holiday cookbooks published in the last 20 years, Zel decided to undertake this project. Her efforts began when she focused on holiday recipes for her web publication, Vegetarians in Paradise.

"Because of requests from our readers, I developed original menus and recipes for our web magazine for just about every major holiday during the year," Zel says, "but I realized that would make a humongous book. Instead, I decided to focus the book on the holiday season from Thanksgiving through New Year's Day. That's when people are really motivated to invite guests and prepare special meals. "

In a web posting, Heather Mills complimented Zel's culinary efforts by saying, "When a site like Vegetarians In Paradise has recommendations for every major holiday of the year, you don't even have to bother searching for recipes.

Green Pea Christmas Tree For this cooking project Zel assembled a team of 38 recipe testers to prepare and evaluate the recipes. "I am extremely grateful to my recipe testers. In many cases they provided me with excellent suggestions that allowed me to tweak the recipes and make them even better," says Zel. "I was heartened by so many of them giving me a thumbs up for the recipes they prepared. In many cases they said they shared the item they cooked with friends who loved the food. In some instances they served the dishes to non-vegetarians who said they were surprised that vegan food could be so delicious."

Gone Vegan for the Holidays will include an introductory section titled Let's Set the Holiday Table. She says, "Even with a simple celebration meal, the holiday table can look warm and inviting with a just few elegant touches." The book includes details on place settings and suggestions for decorating the holiday table.

A special chapter is devoted to creating holiday gifts from the kitchen. Wrapped in bright paper and tied with a bow, items like easy-to-prepare confections or mini pumpkin breads make gifts that will be doubly appreciated because they're "homemade with a pinch of love."


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