After a blogging lull, I’m back with a fresh post. I finished and submitted my manuscript for Plant-Powered Families last Friday! That’s why you haven’t heard much from me in recent months, sorry for being so absent.
I doubt there is anyone reading here that isn’t already a fan of the Oh She Glows blog. Angela is not just one of the most popular vegan food bloggers – she is one of the most popular food bloggers, period. She is dearly loved by her audience, for good reason. Her recipes are delicious, reliable, and wholesome, and she shares her food and life with an open heart.
I received a galley copy of OSG to provide a back cover quote, and even that copy was glorious. When I received the final copy, I was in awe. I’ve written four cookbooks, and none have had this presentation splendor. I’m not too proud to say that. The vegan cookery world has evolved. Expectations of plant-based cookbooks are higher, and this is a good thing. No longer is it enough to have recipes, readers want the full package of color and photographs throughout. This cookbook delivers. It is a stunning, comprehensive, glowing piece of work.
True to Angela’s work, this book provides a good variety of recipes that are easy, nutritious, and oh so delicious! And, true to Angela’s work, you will be mesmerized by the captivating food photos throughout the entire book.
Having the privilege to review and provide a quote for OSG, this is what I wrote:
If you can choose only one cookbook this year – Oh She Glows is it! Angela’s approach to vegan recipes is fresh, vibrant, and simple… and her connection to her readers honest and real. Regardless of your dietary needs or culinary expertise, Oh She Glows will become a beloved cooking resource.
About it in a nutshell. You’ll love this book, it’s a cooking resource that should be in every kitchen.
The cookbook itself is BIG! Beautifully so, broken down into these chapters:
- my natural foods pantry
- my favorite kitchen tools & equipment
- smoothies, juice & tea
- power snacks
- homemade staples
- basic cooking chart
There are over 100 recipes, and they are well balanced throughout these chapters, with full-color photos for each. Every recipe, chapter intro, and tip is presented with Angela’s characteristic warmth, sincerity, and charm.
Angela generously offered a recipe reprint for this post. There are so many recipes I could have chosen! Knowing how much our kids enjoy Vegveeta, and well, just about anything cheesy and dippy I just couldn’t resist making Angela’s Life-Affirming Warm Nacho Dip.
This dip is easy to make, and yet looks impressive. When the girls saw the final dish they said “whoa, what’s THAT?“! We all enjoyed digging in, and I quite liked the addition of spinach in the dip. You could probably add some other veggies too if you like, but it’s really quite perfect as-is. I didn’t change anything in the dip other than subbing green onions for the red onions, because they are a little milder for the girls.
When making the dip, I realized I didn’t have a cast iron casserole dish or other proper baking dish suited to this dip. (I do not have as much kitchen gear as you might expect!) I used a pie plate instead, and while it’s not the most attractive for photos, functionally it worked just fine (though it didn’t keep the dip hot for long as a cast iron dish would).
I hesitated to use my photos, because next to Angela’s they are rather elementary. But, I wanted to show you how it looked in our house, and assure you that any of you can make this dip. Even with kids running out the door to activities or hogging the kitchen table with rainbow loom production lines. 😉 So, yeah, when you pin this recipe, use Angela’s photo below!
Verdict? Loved by all! We scraped the dish clean, and not very polite sharing those last spoonfuls. Whoops.
So, on to Angela’s recipe, and her photo of this delicious dip…
Life-Affirming Warm Nacho Dip from The Oh She Glows Cookbook; photo credit: Angela Liddon
ReciPage link to print/pin/share
You’d never know there isn’t a lick of dairy or oil hiding in this mouthwatering hot-out-of-the-oven dip! This dish is always a crowd-pleaser. It’s best when hot, so serve it on a plate warmer or pot holder so it stays warm for as long as possible. I like to bake it in a cast-iron dish, which keeps it warm for almost an hour.
PREP TIME: 25 to 30 minutes, plus soaking time
COOK TIME: 25 to 30 minutes
gluten-free option, oil-free, soy-free, sugar-free, grain-free
FOR THE CHEESE SAUCE:
1 cup (250 mL) raw cashews
1 cup (250 mL) peeled and chopped carrots
2 tablespoons (30 mL) nutritional yeast
2 tablespoons (30 mL) fresh lemon juice
1 large clove garlic
1 1⁄4 teaspoons (6 mL) fine-grain sea salt
3⁄4 teaspoon (4 mL) chili powder
1⁄2 teaspoon (2 mL) onion powder
1⁄4 to 1⁄2 teaspoon (1 to 2 mL) cayenne
pepper, to taste (optional)
FOR THE DIP:
1 cup (250 mL) chunky marinara sauce
1 cup (250 mL) finely chopped sweet onion
2 to 3 handfuls of baby spinach (about 3 ounces/85 g), roughly chopped
1⁄3 cup (75 mL) crushed corn chips or bread crumbs
1 to 2 green onions, finely sliced, for serving (optional)
Tortilla chips or Spiced Toasted Pita Chips (see page 91), for serving
1. Make the Cheese Sauce: Place the cashews in a medium bowl and add water to cover. Set aside to soak for at least 2 hours, or overnight if you have the time. Drain and rinse the soaked cashews.
2. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Lightly grease a 2-quart (2-L) cast-iron pan or casserole dish.
3. Place the carrots in a small saucepan and add water to cover. Bring the water to a boil and cook the carrots for 5 minutes, or until just fork-tender. Drain. You can also steam the carrots, if desired.
4. In a blender, combine the soaked and drained cashews, cooked carrots, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, garlic, salt, chili powder, onion powder, cayenne (if using), and 2⁄3 cup (150 mL) water and blend until silky smooth, adding a splash of extra water if needed. Pour the sauce into a large bowl.
5. Make the Dip: Stir the marinara sauce, onion, and spinach into the Cheese Sauce until fully combined. Spoon the sauce into the prepared dish and smooth out, and sprinkle the top evenly with the crushed corn chips.
6. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, uncovered, watching closely toward the end of the cooking time to make sure the corn chip topping doesn’t burn. Garnish with sliced green onion, if desired. Serve immediately with tortilla chips or Spiced Toasted Pita Chips.
7. Reheat any leftovers in the oven at 400°F (200°C) for 10 to 20 minutes, or until heated through. Store the dip in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 to 5 days.
Angela has also generously offered a giveaway of her cookbook. Enter below for a chance to win a copy of the Oh She Glows Cookbook! To enter, leave a comment telling us which Angela recipe is your all-time favorite! Contest open to residents of Canada and the U.S. Good luck! (p.s. Why wait to see if you win? Go ahead and get yourself a copy of this glorious book! If you’re the lucky winner, gift it to another – you won’t be sorry!)