Things Vegans Fry

Things Vegans Fry by Chef Johnna GaleDoes it seem like most people equate “vegan” with “healthy” as in “healthy diet” or “healthy alternative” or “healthy lifestyle”? Let’s be clear: not all vegan food is healthy and not all vegans want to spend all their time eating healthy foods. That’s why we have vegan candy and desserts and snack foods and, even fried foods.

For vegans who are seeking the occasional indulgence in crunchy, oily, fried foods, there’s a cookbook for you.  Things Vegans Fry: Crunchy Comfort Food for Vegans is now available as an ebook. Chef Johnna Gale spent years developing and testing recipes for a variety of deep fried foods. The result is over a dozen recipes for tater tots, fries, and potato chips.

Want to know how to fry mushrooms or tofu? Or world cuisine like falafel, pakoras, and sopapillas? They are all there, along with toppings and dipping sauces — all vegan and all gluten-free.

Next time you’re looking for a guilty pleasure, try one of the recipes in this book. It’s available on Amazon for use on all Kindle devices and apps.


How to Make Roasted Salsa

Summertime is great for both grilling and partying.  What party food can benefit from a grilling? Salsa!

Join Chef Johnna Gale in the video below to learn how easy it is to make a spicy roasted salsa that will be the hit of any picnic, party, or cookout.

In addition to walking you through the recipe from the kitchen to the grill and back to the kitchen, Chef Johnna shows you how to safely peel your peppers and just how “roasted” your ingredients need to be.


The full recipe can be found here — and more salsa recipes (sans roasting) are available here.

Do you have a favorite salsa ingredient? How do you feel about salsas that go “beyond the tomato” to feature tomatillos, mangos, watermelon, or even cactus?

The New Milks

The New MilksWhen looking for a vegan-friendly cookbook, it helps if it is at least free of dairy products. That’s exactly what Dina Cheney gives us in The New Milks. All the recipes use almond, hemp, oat, coconut, flax, cashew, and even pumpkin seed milk.

All of these milks can either be made yourself or found on the grocery store shelf. Almond, oat, and hemp milks are usually the easiest to find at the grocers. When I first heard about this book I thought it was going to teach me how to make nut milks. Actually, it’s about how to use these new milk products instead of cow’s milk.

It turns out this is extremely useful information for me. I haven’t used cow’s milk for more than a dozen years in cooking and baking. The author shows new ways to use these milks. I’m excited to try some of the unusual milks like pumpkin seed. I’ve attempted making my own almond and soy milks. We’ve decided over the years that it’s an even cost to either make your own or buy them.

I’m eager to taste the recipes in this book. While most of the breakfast recipes are out (they use eggs), I’m giving the Vichyssoise made with cashew milk and the Vegan Blueberry Cream Tart a try.

The recipes are simple to follow, with step-by-step instructions. Cheney includes dietary tags for each recipe to help guide you in making the correct choice for your particular dietary needs.

Vegan, dairy-free, paleo, and gluten-free diets are all represented.



Catch the Kitchen Shaman at Chicago Veggie Fest

veggiefest_chicagoOne of the largest vegetarian festivals in North America is fast approaching – and our very own Chef Johnna Gale, aka the Kitchen Shaman, is on the schedule this year.

This year’s event will be held on July 23rd & 24th in Lisle, Illinois, just outside of Chicago.  2016 marks the 11th year for this premiere event that includes food demos, international lifestyle and nutrition speakers, music, a huge food court, an art show, and a children’s parade & tent. Admission is free and the festival runs from 11 am to 8 pm both days.

Chef Johnna will be presenting two demos. Learn to make “Watermelon 3 Ways” and “Red Chili Tofu Tacos.”  Mark your schedule for Saturday at 2 pm and Sunday at 1 pm so you don’t miss out seeing the Kitchen Shaman at work.

In addition to Chef Johnna, you can see demos by Beverly Lynn Bennet (The Vegan Chef), Chef Sam of Vegan Plate, Ellen Jaffe Jones, and the Raw Team. The Food Court will feature over 20 booths of delicious vegan (and vegetarian) food. There will be dozens of vendors offering food products, health and beauty items, and memorabilia and 20+ speakers talking about health, nutrition, environmental impact, spirituality, and general vegetarianism/veganism.

Learn more about the event at

In 2015, over 30,000 people attended the event, so if you’re in the area, please stop by and meet Chef Johnna – and taste the food from the demos.

V is for vegan

V is for VeganIn an age that is loaded with books on vegan cooking, how to become vegan, what not to eat, and advice for the new vegan, V is for Vegan comes to us with a straightforward tactic: here’s some food. Cook it. Eat it. It’s vegan. It’s good.

The author, Kerstin Rodgers, has created a book that anyone can enjoy. Looking over the recipes it is obvious that almost anyone can create this food (13 things on Toast is probably my favorite). Rodgers even explains what you need to have in your pantry to cook the recipes in this book.

Rodgers has been writing about food for quite a while over on Ms. Marmite Lover. She is also the instigator of The Secret Garden Supper Club in the UK, teaches many classes, and enjoys traveling. She has won numerous awards for her writing.

I did enjoy the recipes in this book. As someone who creates recipes myself, it’s a pleasure when I can follow along and be successful. The layout of the book is fun and playful with dual colored pages. One teensy, tiny complaint: many of the photos are dark or “busy.” This seems to be the way of producing recipe photos these days. Just thought I’d make a note of it.

The book is laid out in sections, so if you want to look up snacks (my favorite), or dinner recipes, just turn to those sections. I can’t imagine not wanting to make any of this food. I was drooling a little while skimming these tasty items. There’s even tacos! Tacos in the UK!