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The official Mediterranean Vegan Kitchen review thread (to be updated).

Add recipe reviews here for Donna Klein's The Mediterranean Vegan Kitchen, and I will add them to the compilation. Thanks to kristinv once again for the list!

Appetizers
Stuffed Artichokes Niçoise Style

Catalan Tomato Bread
Not as I had hoped. Rubbing a tomato on the bread just get the bread soggy, but doesn't really give all the flavor (and none of the texture of) the tomatoes in bruschetta, for instance. Oh well. (fb)
Bruschetta with Cannellini Beans, Bitter Greens, and Tomatoes
Liked it. Tomato bruschetta is always my favorite, but this was also good. Feels more like an actual meal this way, and the "bitter greens" (I used kale) are not too bitter with everything else. (fb)
Bruschetta with Tomatoes and Basil
really good (lobsteriffic)
I've made this appetizer for parties many times, and everyone loves it. (tmarkeim)
I. love. it. I change nothing from this recipe. It's best on good Italian-type bread... I mean, the tomato mixture is great, but the bread that is used really affects it (I used some less than great bread one time; it was a sad day). Tomato mixture is juicy, flavorful, and the method for flavoring the bread always works for me. (fb)
Bruschetta with Tomatoes, Black Olives, and Marinated Artichokes

Classic Bruschetta with Olive Oil, Garlic, and Coarse Salt

Chickpeas with Parsley Tahini Sauce
O.K.  She described this as an "unmashed hummus" and it really is...chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice, garlic and parsley.  I found the tahini taste too sharp and strong, although she only calls for 2 tablespoons.  It might be the brand I used but I would cut back on the tahini next time if I were to make it again, which I probably won't. (tweety)
Need to edit the chickpeas review.  It was actually quite good after being chilled for a few hours and served over crackers.   The bitterness seemed to dissipate it some making it very tasty. (tweety)
Provençal Chickpea Puree
It was pretty good, but I couldn't help but think of this as a healthier hummus, and then want hummus...(fb)
Provençal Chickpea Flour Pancake

Crostini with Pureed White Beans and Sautéed Wild Greens (La Capriata)

Crostini with Radicchio, Balsamic Vinegar, and Olive Oil

Crostini with Tomatoes, Capers, and Thyme
Ooo great. It doesn't look so awesome all blended up (not gross, you just don't expect greatness). Sometimes I don't like capers, but they were good in the mixture, and I think the breadcrumbs were good for it too (I wasn't so sure, making fresh breadcrumbs just to blend them in, but I think it makes it tastier). (fb)
Crostini with Black Truffle Sauce (Crostini à la Scheggino)

Garlic Puree with Croutons

Wild Mushroom Spread with Croutons

Eggplant Roll Ups with Pesto

Roasted Eggplant Salad (Baba Ghanouj)
Love baba ghanouj. This always comes out a little lighter for me than store-bought or restaurant stuff - not sure why, maybe I ought to drain the roasted eggplant more - but I like it that way anyway. The garlic can be VERY strong, so it's probably good to hold back until you know you can do the whole amount... because it becomes stronger after refrigeration. I think it's a good (probably a little lighter?) alternative to hummus. J doesn't like eggplant (more like hates it), but seems to be totally fine with this, even after I told him it was eggplant, haha. (fb)
Provençal Eggplant Caviar
I did not like it at all.  It had a weird sweet flavor and nobody who tasted it liked it.  A disappointing start. (veggydog)
Caponata

Polenta Crostini with Caponata
I pretty much liked this, J thought it was weird. We used kalamata olives from TJs (the ones in brine, not olive oil), and they had a little bit of an odd flavor (got the olives again, same thing. hm), which colored the whole dish. agh. Otherwise I think he would've liked it, and I would've liked it more. Anyway, I like the idea of polenta for crostini, and it's certainly eye-pleasing. (fb)
This is pretty good.  Really run of the mill as well, but good nonetheless.  She bakes the eggplant first which is a good technique.  I omitted the sugar and added crushed red pepper.  The polenta was good.  The technique of brushing it with olive oil and broiling it makes for a nice taste and crunchy texture on top which was good.  (tweety)
Hummus with Roasted Red Pepper and Cilantro

Classic Hummus

Broiled Mushrooms with Pesto

Marinated Button Mushrooms with White Wine, Cloves, and Saffron

Mushrooms Stuffed with Bread Crumbs, Parsley, and Garlic

Wild Mushrooms in Garlic Sauce

Baked Black Olives with Herbes de Provence and Anise

Black Olive Tapenade
Same olive culprit as the polenta crostini, same story. Other than that, I think you have to REALLY like olives to get along with this (I do!) because that flavor winds up very strong. also: GARLIC. Does not make a ton, but you don't need much at all. (fb)
I love olive tapenade and this one is good.  It's pretty run of the mill, but a bit unique because it has herbs de provence in it because it's a French Provencal way of making it.  (tweety)
Green Olive and Almond Tapenade

Italian Sweet and Sour Baby Cipolline Onions

Spanish Sweet and Sour Pearl Onions in Tomato Raisin Sauce

Garlic Herb Pita Toasts

Tomatoes Persillade

Catalan Grilled Vegetables with Almond Sauce (Escalivada con Salsa Romesco)

Salsa Romesco

Tomatoes à la Provençal

Assorted Vegetables in Charmoula Sauce
Pretty good....I didn't cook the veggies as long as she suggest so as to have a bit of a crunch.  The charmoula is a Moroccan marinade, and is cilantro, parsley, lmeon juice, garlic, cumin and paprika.  I added some harrissa paste instead of her optional cayenne.  This was my first time cooking with fresh pearl onions and I appreciated her tip on how to peel them (boil them for two minutes, cut the root end off and squeeze out the onion). (tweety)
Zucchini Marinated with Sherry Vinegar and Mint
This dish didn't work out for me at all, mostly because I realized I'm allergic to some kinds of mint. Nothing severe but my hands broke out from handling the fresh mint. It freaked me out, so I didn't eat very much of it. G liked it. I might try making it again with a different herb, perhaps dill? (kristinv)
Stuffed Zucchini, Niçoise Style

Soups
Microwave Vegetable Broth

Concentrated Vegetable Broth

Basic Vegetable Broth

Light Soups
Asparagus Soup with Thyme

Sicilian Barley Soup

Sicilian Bread and Tomato Basil Soup

Sicilian Style Broccoli and Parsnip Soup

Sicilian Style Broccoli, Potato, and Parsnip Soup

Moroccan Carrot Soup

Roasted Eggplant and Red Pepper Soup

Garlic Soup with Potatoes, Italian Style
like it (nmpixie)
Gazpacho

Tomato Fennel Soup

Tomato Rice Soup

Simple Mediterranean Vegetable Soup

Meal in a Bowl Soups
Persian Style, Multi Bean Noodle Soup
has gotten mixed reviews twice now so I'll probably not be making that again. (jkl)
It was fantastic...one of those unexpected "OMG this is so freakin' good" experiences.  For some reason I really wasn't expecting much from this soup, it has lentils, cannelloni beans, red kidney beans, and garbanzo beans, along with onions and garlic in a veggie bullion.   I think the kicker seasoning is dill..I used dry rather than fresh, along with fresh parsley.  The garnish is roasted red onions and garlic seasoned with turmeric, white vinegar and lemon juice.   Doesn't sound all that good, but it comes together well so the sum is greater than the parts. (tweety)
Bouillabaisse of Spinach, Potatoes, Chickpeas, and Saffron
It was super tasty. (kikilola)
Delish!  I pretty much followed instructions but I used kale instead, and I used two 16 oz. cans of chickpeas instead of one 19 oz. can which isn't available here, but I didn't mind the extra chickpeas.......this was a hearty and tasty stew..I could actually taste the saffron and I think I used too much of a pinch, but it's all good. (tweety)
Tuscan Bread Soup with Vegetables and Beans (Ribollita)

Tunisian Chickpea Soup

Egyptian Style Lentil Soup
This was excellent.  Nothing earth shattering but what makes it good is that she uses cumin seeds and that offers a unique flavor that powdered doesn't.  It also has fennel seeds which is good.  Another unique thing about this recipe is that she bakes sliced red onions in olive oil in the oven for 15 minutes and then stirs them in at the end offering a different twist than I'm used to. (tweety)
Lentil and Escarole Soup
I used the small green French lentils and soaked them overnight.  I knew my children wouldn't eat big pieces of wilty escarole in the soup, so I chopped the raw escarole very fine in the food processor before adding it.  No one complained. The soup tasted better the next day.  The only change I would make would be more boullion or broth powder since the taste needed a bit more depth.  And we topped each bowl with a couple of drops of good EVOO. (jkl)
Classic Italian Minestrone

Provençal Pumpkin Soup with Winter Pistou

Quick Tuscan Style Minestrone Soup

Pasta and Bean Soup (Pasta e Fagioli)

Tomato Lentil Soup with Brown Rice
Often make this in cooler weather. (jkl)
Provençal Vegetable Soup with Pistou

Pistou Sauce

Provençal Wheat Berry Bean Soup

Provençal Zucchini Rice Soup with Winter Pistou

Winter Pistou

Winter Pesto

Salads
First Course and Side Salads
Arugula and Mushroom Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette

Red Kidney Bean and Mixed Green Salad

Tunisian Beet Salad with Harissa
Pretty good.  This salad uses roasted beets which I only roasted 20 minutes because I like the raw crunchy taste of beets, olive oil, scallions, parsley, garlic and Harissa  (or any hot chili sauce would do) and was quite easy to make and tasty. (tweety)
Persian Cucumber and Tomato Salad
Excellent - This tasty fresh salad is pretty standard fare for a salad of that region...I dramatically cut back on the amount of onions she asks for...it calls for 8 oz. of red onions and I used about two, plus a bunch of six to eight scallions and I used one.  It the dressing was a nice mix of olive oil, lemon and lime juice.  It has fresh mint and fresh parsley. (tweety)
Fennel, Orange, and Black Olive Salad

Green Bean and Chickpea Salad
Pretty good.  Simple combo of green beans, chickpeas and red onions in a balsamic vinegar dressing. (tweety)
Salad of Bitter Greens and Pine Nuts with Classic Italian Vinaigrette

Mixed Green Salad with Fresh Herb Vinaigrette

Mesclun Salad with Classic French Vinaigrette

Warm Wild Mushroom and Frisée Salad

Moroccan Orange and Black Olive Salad

Orange, Cucumber, and Red Onion Salad with Aniseed

Roasted Red pepper and Zucchini Salad

New Potato and Young Green Bean Salad
okay but my children didn't like them enough to bear repeating. (jkl)
Moroccan Potato Salad

Radicchio and Butter Lettuce Salad with Toasted Walnuts

Romaine Salad with Roasted Garlic Vinaigrette

Romaine, Red Onion, and Chickpea Salad with Orange Vinaigrette

Romain Salad with Lemon Date Dressing

Sicilian Summer Salad of Roasted Red Onion, Potatoes, Green Beans, and Olives

Spinach and Orange Salad with Pine Nuts and Raisins

Moroccan Fresh Tomato Salad
Interesting change in tomato salad. Basically the only way I have a tomato salad thing is like tomato bruschetta, with olive oil, a little of some variety of vinegar, and basil. So the herbs/spice was different. I think I still prefer basil, though cilantro was good. There isn't a ton of cumin, but it's noticeable. I had it both over lettuce and with bread, and it worked equally well either way. (fb)
Tunisian Roasted Vegetable Salad

Main Course Salads
Catalan Rice Salad with Sherry Tomato Vinaigrette

Lebanese Bread Salad (Fattoush)

Tuscan Bread Salad (Panzanella)
like it (nmpixie)
Everyone requests the recipe after trying this. Delicious and REALLY easy. I'd reccomend doubling the dressing, but it's an absolute favorite in our house and with company. (bellybellygood)
Ligurian Bread Salad with Vegetables (Condigion)

Marinated Lentil Salad
This was very good.  Pretty basic lentil recipe cooked with veggie broth/stock, bay leaf, thyme, parsley and carrots and onions.  It might have been better with raw carrots rather than cooked.  The marinade was simply leftover broth from cooking the lentils, dijon mustard and red wine vinegar.  (tweety)
Italian Style Brown Rice Salad

Rice Salad with Saffron and Green Olives

Provençal Couscous Tabbouleh Salad

Tabbouleh Salad with Chickpeas
Very good.  This is your basic tabbouleh recipe with the addition of chickpeas  I like that she uses both fresh mint and parsley.  I cut back to only two large scallions whereas she calls for six to eight. (tweety)
Mediterranean Wheat Berry Salad

Green beans with sun-dried tomato and black olive sauce - There was no way no how I wouldn't love this dish as it has stuff I seriously love to eat.  I added the optional toasted almonds.  You can really taste the garlic as it isn't cooked but heated when the hot green beans are added after cooking. 

http://a2.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/295878_2166359677364_1197836956_31994206_244359071_n.jpg

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braised cabbage with red beans and rice - I wasn't expecting much out of this because it's just some onions and carrots sauteed in olive oil, and then cabbage, rice and beans cooked in rice.  No herbs, no spices, not even garlic.  However, in this case less is more.  The flavor was very satisfying and I enjoyed it a lot.  It calls for arborio rice, but i just used regular brown rice that I cooked separate and added at the end.  It calls for kidney beans but all I had was pinto and that was good. 

http://a7.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/314874_2191077015282_1197836956_32012558_601618938_n.jpg

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Tweety, your photos always make me drool.

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:)>>> :)>>>

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Egyptian-style lentil soup - This was excellent.  Nothing earth shattering but what makes it good is that she uses cumin seeds and that offers a unique flavor that powdered doesn't.  It also has fennel seeds which is good.  Another unique thing about this recipe is that she bakes sliced red onions in olive oil in the oven for 15 minutes and then stirs them in at the end offering a different twist than I'm used to. 

http://a5.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/311333_2260702755882_1197836956_32064003_249252327_n.jpg

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Persian-style multi-bean noodle soup - It was fantastic...one of those unexpected "OMG this is so freakin' good" experiences.  For some reason I really wasn't expecting much from this soup, it has lentils, cannelloni beans, red kidney beans, and garbanzo beans, along with onions and garlic in a veggie bullion.  I think the kicker seasoning is dill..I used dry rather than fresh, along with fresh parsley.  The garnish is roasted red onions and garlic seasoned with turmeric, white vinegar and lemon juice.  Doesn't sound all that good, but it comes together well so the sum is greater than the parts.

http://a5.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/422708_2827716610874_1197836956_32290053_1548097510_n.jpg

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Bouillabaisee of spinach, potatoes, chickpeas and saffron - Delish!  I pretty much followed instructions but I used kale instead, and I used two 16 oz. cans of chickpeas instead of one 19 oz. can which isn't available here, but I didn't mind the extra chickpeas.......this was a hearty and tasty stew..I could actually taste the saffron and I think I used too much of a pinch, but it's all good.

http://sphotos.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/560334_3197629458464_1197836956_32434842_1361710359_n.jpg

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Fettuccine with spicy raw tomato, herb, and caper sauce - This was fantastic!  The sauce is uncooked roma tomatoes, mint, Italian parsley, basil, garlic along with some capers and oil oil.  Loved it!

http://sphotos.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/557617_3204780157227_1197836956_32439376_235951152_n.jpg

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Assorted vegetable in charmoula sauce - Pretty good....I didn't cook the veggies as long as she suggest so as to have a bit of a crunch.  The charmoula is a Moroccan marinade, and is cilantro, parsley, lmeon juice, garlic, cumin and paprika.  I added some harrissa paste instead of her optional cayenne.  This was my first time cooking with fresh pearl onions and I appreciated her tip on how to peel them (boil them for two minutes, cut the root end off and squeeze out the onion).

http://a3.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-prn1/536726_3293933386002_1197836956_32471281_2007169249_n.jpg

Green bean and chickpea salad - Pretty good.  Simple combo of green beans, chickpeas and red onions in a balsamic vinegar dressing.

http://sphotos.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/552810_3293933786012_1197836956_32471282_1926272850_n.jpg

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Olive tapenade - I love olive tapenade and this one is good.  It's pretty run of the mill, but a bit unique because it has herbs de provence in it because it's a French Provencal way of making it. 

Polenta Crostini with caponata - This is pretty good.  Really run of the mill as well, but good nonetheless.  She bakes the eggplant first which is a good technique.  I omitted the sugar and added crushed red pepper.  The polenta was good.  The technique of brushing it with olive oil and broiling it makes for a nice taste and crunchy texture on top which was good. 

http://a6.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/485792_3300563791758_1197836956_32474073_1502923911_n.jpg

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Roasted asparagus with mushrooms - pretty basic with the veggies roasted in olive oil and drizzled with balsamic or sherry vinegar. Very good and I always appreciate the instructions on how to make simple dishes.

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Salad of bitter greens and pine nuts with classic Italian vinaigrette - This was quite good. The raw greens I used were dandelion and mustard. I usually don't use mustard greens raw but I didn't have enough dandelion and I massaged the dressing in good and it was spicy/bitter but good. The dressing is relatively simple but flavorful, as Italians tend to be with olive oil, red wine vinegar and balsamic . I used walnuts instead of pine nuts.

http://sphotos.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-prn1/528986_3705529875657_1399702785...

Moroccan potato salad - What's different about this simple salad has a lot of fresh flat-leaf parsley in it. This was very good.

http://sphotos.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/559234_3705530355669_36852662_n...

Moroccan fresh tomato salad - Very good. This salad has parsley, cilantro, jalapeno chile pepper, cumin, olive oil and vinegar. Very tasty combination. She asks that you salt the tomatoes and leave them in a colander to drain for 30 minutes. I omitted the salt and let them drain while I prepared the other ingredients, since I'm trying to use less salt in my cooking.

http://sphotos.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/600419_3705530035661_252686634_...

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