janet @ the taste space

Pumpkin Hummus + Easy Vegan Cookbook GIVEAWAY

In Book Review, Sides on April 10, 2016 at 8:54 AM

Pumpkin Hummus + Easy Vegan Cookbook GIVEAWAY

You have probably noticed I have been struggling with the blog lately. I am barely eking out a post per week. It is a combination of a few things: less time spent cooking and less time to blog about it. It certainly isn’t that I have stopped eating (HA!) but I found myself nodding when I read Ginny’s latest post about Vegan Food for People Who Don’t Cook. Combined with quite a few batches of my Easy Vegan Lasagna, and incessant snacking on hummus and crackers, it feels like I have been eating hummus non-stop. And no, I wasn’t even making it myself, the bulk of it came from store-bought varieties. Not sorry.

However, for the non-believers, I can still make hummus. However, when you plow through this much hummus, you need variety. Want a way to sneak in some extra vegetables? Try this pumpkin hummus. Lighter than traditional hummus, and no doubt, similar to this Sweet Potato Hummus, I preferred this as a base for a wrap/sandwich then straight-up dipping. Top with some vegetables and marinated tofu, and you have a quick meal.

The Easy Vegan Cookbook cover

Easy meals are the centre of Kathy Hester’s latest cookbook, The Easy Vegan Cookbook.  She gives you tips on approaching the kitchen with ease (did you know you can freeze onions without any preparation?) as well as 80 recipes that don’t require as much work as you might think. Quickly make your meals complete with staples such as Super-Fast Enchilada Sauce or the 2-ingredient Tofu Sour Cream. There are hearty and simple stews like Inside Out Stuffed Pepper Stew and Mapo Tofu.  She has time-saving (and vegetable adding!) ideas for one-pot pasta including her One-Pot Veggie Vodka Sauce Pasta and One-Pot Vegetable Lo Mein. Her “Almost Effortless Lasagna is almost as simple as mine and I will likely try it next. Shredded sweet potatoes are used in a few dishes to quickly speed up cooking times and give you a texture you likely have not associated with the sweet spuds (see Sweet Potato Ropa Vieja). Variations on stir fries and sandwiches, classical quick meals, are also included.

Some dishes take a bit more time to prepare, but they are mostly hands off (including the lasagna). She also oven-bakes quinoa so that you can do other things while it bakes. And last but not least, there are a some dessert recipes including an oil-free avocado-packed walnut brownie recipe. No cookies here, because loaves and pans of baked goods are much simpler than fiddly cookies.

Pumpkin Hummus

I feel the need to highlight how much I love Page Street Publishing lay-flat binding for cookbooks.  It allows easy access to the recipes, most of which are accompanied with crisp photographs by Ann Olivero, from An Unrefined Vegan.

Of note of the recipes I tried, my suggestions are don’t use a non-alcoholic apple cider for the Drunken Sweet Potato BBQ as I found it made it quite sweet indeed. I also enjoyed the Veggie-Ful Rice and Beans although I used my pressure cooker to make it even faster (there are directions for the stove top and slow cooker in the cookbook).

Recipes from the cookbook spotted elsewhere:

Apple Zucchini Buckwheat Pancakes

Asian Corn Cabbage Soup

Avocado Lemon Basil Pesto

Carrot Cashew Chez

Carrot Dogs

Creamy Mexi Mac

Creole Okra Corn Soup

One Pot Vegan Vodka Pasta Sauce

Spicy (or not) Cauliflower Po’ Boy

Sweet Potato Spice Frozen Latte

Veggie Quinoa Drop Biscuits

Now for you to get a chance to win a copy to make your own cooking easier..

Pumpkin Hummus + Easy Vegan Cookbook GIVEAWAY

Thankfully, the publisher allowed me to giveaway the cookbook to a reader living in the United States or Canada. To be entered in the random draw for the book, please leave a comment below telling me about your tricks for making cooking easier. The winner will be selected at random on April 20, 2016. Good luck!

Pumpkin Hummus
Reprinted, with permission, from The Easy Vegan Cookbook

gluten-free soy-free no oil added

Author’s note: Hummus is a vegan staple. It gets a bad rap because sometimes it’s a vegan’s only friend at a party. But hummus does not have to be boring, especially if you up the flavor with pumpkin, smoked paprika, cumin and a little nutritional yeast. Try this as a base on the Falafel “Pitza” on page 159.

1 (15 oz [425 g]) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained or 1½ cups (300 g) cooked
3/4 cup (184 g) pumpkin purée (can substitute sweet potato or butternut squash purée)
2 cloves garlic, sliced
1 tablespoon (15 ml) lemon juice
2 tablespoons (10 g) nutritional yeast
½ to 1 teaspoon cumin, to taste
¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
¼ to ½ teaspoon coriander, to taste, optional
¼ teaspoon cayenne
2 to 3 tablespoons (30 to 45 ml) water, as needed, to make a smooth purée
Salt, to taste

1. Place the chickpeas, pumpkin, garlic, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, cumin, paprika, coriander and cayenne in your food processor. Blend until the chickpeas are puréed. Add a tablespoon (15 ml) of water at a time if the mixture is too thick.

2. Taste and adjust seasonings; add salt to taste.


Per ½ cup (60 g) serving: Calories 107.5, protein 5.4 g, total fat 1.0 g, carbohydrates 20.2 g, sodium 217.0 mg, fiber 5.1 g

Reprinted from The Easy Vegan Cookbook Copyright © 2015 by Kathy Hester. Published by Page St Publishing.

Photos from the book are by Ann Olivero, from An Unrefined Vegan.
  1. This sounds great!
    I have given up on pumpkins; every year I cook Sweet Meat Squash (no, it’s not meat) instead. I put it away in two cup portions and am always looking for ways to cook it up. This recipe sounds like a great use for my SMS!

  2. This sounds like a great cookbook! Thanks for hosting the giveaway.
    My time-saver is to cook two pounds of beans at a time (either pressure cooker or crock pot overnight), then plan meals around my ‘bean du jour’. Each of my kids has different favorite, simple ways to eat beans, so it sometimes happens that I don’t even get to ‘make anything’ before they’re all eaten and I cook another batch.

  3. I make cooking easier by batch cooking staples through the week like rice, beans, and other grains and freezing the leftovers.

  4. Thanks again Janet for that wonderful giveaway. You’re su generous. I’m really grateful for that.

    To make cooking easier is to be really organize. I make sure to prepare my menu everyweek and I feel less pressure in my cooking. Also, I like to prepare more portion and put the rest in the freezer. It is super appreciated when I don’t have time or don’t feel like cooking.

    Have a nice day and thanks again Janet 🙂

  5. Bowls and conditions are my friends. I’ve gone from condiment hater to convert. I keep a lot of homemade mustards, hot sauces, pickles, etc. in my refrigerator. They keep virtually forever and can transform whatever vegetables and protein I have on hand. Frequently, I’ll saute a mess of vegetables, a protein (often eggs), and then swirl in mustard, herbs and spices, and then put in a bowl, upon which I’ll put a pickled something. Easy, quick, satisfying meals every time.

  6. My easy-peazy goto is frozen brown rice. I get it at Trader Joes. So fast and delicious!

  7. I’m a big fan of “cook once, eat twice”. Even though I’m only cooking for two, I still make a full casserole or big ol’ pot of soup. There is almost always a meal ready to heat and eat in my fridge or freezer.

    Hubs and I both loved your easy lasagna, BTW.

  8. Having good tools on hand. The right pot, gadget, spoon saves soooo much time! And makes things easier. (^8 And I cook rice/blends and freeze in portions to pop into soups, salads, etc.

  9. I always clean and cut my produce so it is all ready to use when I want to cook!

  10. I look for simplistic recipes with few ingredients, I try to take leftover and turn into new dish and I love to sneak veggies to make 1 pot meals

  11. I use prewashed/pre-cut vegetables to save time

  12. I rely on my electric pressure cooker for legumes of all likes, but even that has been taxing me lately! I’m in a bit of a rut. I may have to try the pumpkin hummus, thanks!

  13. I prep food for the week… Precook end beans and lentils as well as other foods make eating healthy vegan diets easier 🙂

  14. one of my tricks is to always have certain staples on-hand like potatoes, beans, carrots etc in case I need to throw something together in a pinch

  15. My most effective trick is definitely meal prep! I cut up vegetables, cook grains and proteins and whip up dressings and sauces on the weekend so everything is ready when it’s time to cook. This saves TONS of time and takes the guesswork out of cooking – absolutely essential on a weeknight!

  16. Smoked paprika is such a good add! I need some of this soon. And 2 ingredient tofu sour cream?! YUM!

  17. I make cooking easier by chopping ingredients first at night and putting them in the fridge to cook everything in the morning when everyone is asleep.

  18. Since I am cooking for one, I like to prep for meals by cooking larger batches of grains and legumes, portion them out, and then freeze them. Then, when I need a quick meal, all I need to do is chop up some veggies and greens, make a dressing, warm up the freezer items, and voila, a delicious, healthy salad in about 10 minutes.

  19. If possible, I try to prepare a portion of the meal in advance. Maybe I chop the vegetables in the morning, or cook the grain portion and put it in the fridge. Having a couple less steps to do when I’m actually cooking the meal lowers my stress levels.

  20. I like to make double batches and freeze one for later.

  21. I make cooking easier by prepping ahead – I precut veggies to freeze/have in the fridge. It’s super simple to throw together a soup/stirfry/pot-pie when the prep is already done!

  22. I like to make recipes that make 6 or 8 servings for lots of leftovers during the week.

  23. I make vegetable soup in a big pot, blend half of it in the Vitamix and then remix it. It makes about 3-4 nights of soup for 2 people. The Vitamix makes it very rich and creamy, even if you eliminate dairy. I also like to make a batch of your delicious corn chips and make sure to buy 5 avocados every time I go to the store, so that I always have guacamole and chips to snack on and pair with my salad and soup. I like to use Tribest mason jar blender to save on washing and scraping out the Vitamix for all of my salad dressings; it really saves time blending in the actual jar you will refrigerate. I like to make almond or coconut milk and then freeze them into ice cubes and store in a big ziplock bag for green smoothies. I also think that being organized and well-stocked is key. I have like 10 Debbie Meyer Bread Boxes for all of my produce and the greens last longer this way. I buy a ton of bananas too each time I’m at the store because you can always make a green smoothie if you don’t feel like cooking and get tons of protein and nutrients that way. Also, freezing bananas for ice cream is fun or a quick snack like almond butter on sliced bananas is yummy and fast. 🙂

  24. With commute times home in the evening and a toddler running around, I have found the only way to make great tasting, vegan or vegetarian recipes regularly is to chop and prep veggies for at least a few meals on Sunday after going to the grocery store. That way, once I get home I can start on dinner once the stove/oven is heated.

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