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Vegan for the Holidays


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Vegetarians in Paradise
Vegetarian Reading



Each issue the VIP birds will endeavor to soar to the highest literary peak to peck out the most unique, informative, and accomplished book that contributes to vegetarian enlightenment. In this issue we feature a book that shows how vegetarian cooking can play an important role in preventing cancer.



The Taste for Living Cookbook

By Beth Ginsberg and Mike Milken

CaP CURE Book, 1998



With its appealing title and graphically attractive cover, The Taste For Living Cookbook presents an enticing invitation to enter the world of fresh, natural, and healthful cooking. Upon entering, one discovers much more than a humdrum collection of recipes. Guided by Ginsberg and Milken, one embarks upon a journey of discovery to learn how healthy foods can prevent cancer, especially prostate cancer, and benefit the body by natural substances we know as phytochemicals.

In 1993 Mike Milken was diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer. One month later he garnered support with private funds to establish CaP CURE, the Association for the Cure of Cancer of the Prostate. Using the latest scientific research results on cancer prevention through nutrition, he and Ginsberg created one of the most attractive cookbooks published recently.

The recipes are innovative and most are easy to prepare. Beth Ginsberg, trained at the Culinary Institute of America, artfully combines her discipline with her long-standing focus on natural foods. She succeeds in creating tasty comfort-food favorites with low-fat tofu and fresh vegetables rather than the artery-clogging animal-based versions. Vegans will find most of the recipes a delight except for some which incorporate eggs, egg whites, and soy cheeses (most of which contain casein, a milk protein.)

In addition to the recipes, the book has some special features: a brief section explaining the benefits of exercise, a helpful page describing "marketing terms" like "lite," "reduced fat," "natural," and "fat-free," and side bars with interesting tidbits of history and cancer prevention benefits of foods included in the recipes.

The design, photography, and food styling are sensational. The book is a graphic delight and easily accomplishes its mission--to entice one to buy it. Just open the book to the dessert section and you'll begin to salivate.

The Taste for Living Cookbook is an impressive work, but not perfect. We found one area greatly lacking. Numerous, healthful whole grains are available in natural food markets, yet there were rather few mentions of whole grains in the recipes. Of the many opportunities in the book to specify the use of whole grain breads for the sandwiches, only one recipe did. Maybe we're mistaken, but we understood that whole grains, with their natural fiber intact, were important in the prevention of colon cancer. On the positive side, kudos to Chef Beth for creating the multigrain pancakes and waffles.

The fiber issue aside, the book has an excellent collection of recipes as well as many appealing informational features. For those who want to focus on cancer prevention and still enjoy the gustatorial experience of tasty foods, the book is a winner.


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