While not a diabetic myself, I do have friends and family members who are diabetic, so it's always helpful to find new recipes that can please different palates. The recipes in the American Diabetes Association Vegetarian Cookbook are suitable for all people, whether they have diabetes or are just interested in more heart-healthy fare.
Overall Impressions: This cookbook offers a wide variety of recipes that rely on the use of fresh ingredients as well as time-saving convenience ingredients. Most recipes use little oil or other solid fats in the interest of keeping the recipes heart-healthy. The dessert section relies on the use of seasonal fruit, but some recipes also use a Splenda®-brown sugar blend, which may not appeal to all palates. The recipes are designed so that substitutes can be made (butternut squash for pumpkin or penne for rigatoni, for example), so this may be helpful to cooks looking to substitute ingredients in a pinch.
Reservations: I did not find many of the dessert recipes accessible. Several of the dessert recipes require the use of Splenda, which I am not a fan of, and the author offers no suggestions for the use of regular sugar or natural sweeteners. While this is a diabetic cookbook, I think avoiding artificial sweeteners is beneficial. Other dessert recipe were appealing, but weren't as accessible due to the seasonality of fruits. For example, it's currently late fall/winter in the American Midwest, so berries, pineapple, and some citrus is prohibitively expensive, nor are these at their peak. I would have liked more dessert recipes that utilized the natural sweetness of fruits such as bananas and dried/fresh dates figs as opposed to artificial sweeteners, since these are available year-round in all parts of the country.
Conclusion: The American Diabetes Association Vegetarian Cookbook: Satisfying, Bold, and Flavorful Recipes from the Garden is a good cookbook for those who are looking for easy vegetarian recipes that keep diabetes and heart health in mind. I think it would be particularly helpful to beginning and developing cooks as well. The cookbook is easy to follow and has beautiful photographs, thought some recipe directions need to be re-tested to maximize user-friendliness. There are some typographical errors, but these do not detract from ease of understanding. There is sufficient room in the margins, so I think including short chef's tips would be welcome and quite useful. I recommend this cookbook, with some reservations.
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Author: William Burnside