I don’t have anything in my teeth, do I? I want to look my best for the party! Today I’m partnering with Simon & Schuster Canada and three other bloggers to celebrate the debut of Ella Woodward’s second cookbook, Deliciously Ella Every Day: Simple Recipes and Fantastic Food for a Healthy Way of Life. If you’re familiar with Ella, you’ll know her for her relaxed and relatable approach to healthy living through plant-based, gluten-free, dairy-free meals, snacks and desserts made with readily available ingredients, and a zest for life that encourages self-care and celebration over deprivation.
In her second book, Ella aims to make healthy eating even easier with more than 100 simple recipes that can be made quickly and in many cases, taken to eat on the go. For those who like to cook ahead, there are big-batch meals that can be made in advance, as well as handy shopping lists, tips for cutting food costs and a breezy guide to living the Deliciously Ella lifestyle. A healthy approach to food means finding what works for you, Ella says, whether that means eating plant-iful meals all the time or just once a day. She’s reasonable, not preachy, and admittedly a “naturally lazy cook [who likes] fast, easy meals that taste wonderful but require minimal preparation, chopping and washing up.” In other words, she’s just like us! And for that I kind of love her.
I made three recipes from Deliciously Ella Every Day (my advance copy has the US cover), starting with the zucchini banana bread. We are big banana bread fans around here (zucchini bread a little less so, and a little more so when we don’t tell the kids it’s got zucchini in it) so I was curious to see how it would go over.
Um, not that well. Reader, the batter was wetter than an otter’s pocket — so much so that I had to bake it a full 25 minutes longer than the 45 to 50 minutes the recipe called for before it was even near done, and I would’ve left it in even longer if the top wasn’t starting to burn. “Did you squeeze the water out of the zucchini before you mixed it in?” my hubby asked. No I did not. The recipe doesn’t say squeeze the zucchini — maybe that’s just assumed? Needless to say, it wouldn’t get the first impression rose. But I’ll try it again. (Ella wouldn’t steer us wrong!)
The roasted maple sprouts put us back on the good foot. Look how gorgeous and bright with the green sprouts and the ruby-red pomegranate seeds! Like Ella suggests, it would be a pretty side for the Christmas table. But it would be a shame not to make it year-round. Maple syrup and chili flakes give the dish a warm sweet/spicy flavour and the crunch from the nuts is a welcome surprise. Bravo! Bravo!
And finally, one of Ella’s favourite recipes, these fantastic sweet potato cakes. Similar in texture (and colour!) to salmon cakes, they’ll be a friend to fish fans and foes. A little dusting of quinoa, buckwheat or brown rice flour on the tops before baking gives them the crispy crust you can see under the creamy tahini dressing. They’re so good, and so good for you! Another one for the win column.
There are many (many!) other recipes I’ve marked with sticky tabs to make, like the chocolate caramel slices I’ve seen all over social media and the chunky carrot and kale soup and the easy ratatouille. And I know I’m not alone! Tomorrow through Friday my fellow bloggers Mary at Ketchup With That, Laura at Chronicles of Passion, and Beverly at Kesse Kisses will be sharing their reviews, so I hope you’ll hop on over and read those too.
For a chance to win a copy of Deliciously Ella Every Day courtesy of Simon & Schuster Canada, tell me one of your favourite plant-based and/or gluten-free recipes in the comments below. (You don’t have to tell me the entire recipe, just the name of the dish.)
For an additional entry, tweet the following and leave the link to your tweet in the comments. Tweet once per day if you like, just make sure to come back here and post the link to your tweet.
#Win a copy of Deliciously Ella Every Day from @trysmallthings and @SimonSchusterCA! CAN 4/22 http://wp.me/p4xBed-1a1 #deliciouslyella
The giveaway is open to Canadian residents 18+ (excl. Quebec) and ends at midnight on April 22, 2016.
Update April 23, 2016: Congratulations Katy E!
Thanks to Simon & Schuster Canada, who sent me an advance copy of Deliciously Ella Every Day in exchange for an honest review.