Back in 2014, I did a brief personal review of the original Oh She Glows Cookbook. This year I am excited and honored to provide yet another review for Angela’s brand new cookbook, Oh She Glows Every Day, which was released earlier this month!
The vegan recipes in the original OSG cookbook were so phenomenal, creative and nutrient-packed that many of them have become go-to staples in my dietitian kitchen. So, as you might imagine, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on Angela’s next cookbook! When the book finally arrived in the mail, the first thing I noticed and loved was the photography. Angela’s decision to partner with the talented Ashley McLaughlin on this project resulted in stunning photos that are colorful, vibrant, and mouth-watering. I also love the fact that this time around, there are entire chapters devoted to Smoothies and Smoothie Bowls as well as Cookies and Bars – my sweet tooth says thank you!
I’ve tried a number of the recipes and am happy to share that they do not disappoint! The Protein Power Rainbow Quinoa Salad, Go-To Gazpacho and Sun-Dried Tomato and Garlic Super-Seed Crackers are all home runs. I cannot wait to try a few others that I would consider the most intriguing and creative recipes in the book – Stuffed Avocado Salad, Roasted Garlic Basil Pesto Potatoes with Arugula, Chili Cheese Nachos, Meyer Lemon Cheesecake with Strawberry-Vanilla Compote and Mile-High Black-and-White Freezer Fudge. Good stuff!
I am always impressed by Angela’s work and Oh She Glows Every Day is no exception. Her passion for healthy vegan cooking is evident on every page and her reputation as someone who refuses to cut corners in the kitchen in effort to maximize the flavor and texture in her recipes is admirable and incredibly appreciated.
While the original OSG cookbook may have tugged at my heart strings a little stronger than this new one, Oh She Glows Every Day is certainly a fun and beautiful cookbook to add to your collection. But before you pull out your wallet, here are a few critiques to consider:
- Repeat Recipes: I was pleased to see that all of the recipes included were the nutrient-packed superfood recipes that Angela is known for! Unfortunately, a few of the recipes appeared to be repeats from her blog – Crispy Smashed Potatoes, Crowd Pleasing Caesar Salad, Endurance Crackers and PB&J Thumbprint Breakfast Cookies just to name a few. Beyond repeating recipes from the blog, there are duplicates in the book itself — the Reset Button Green Smoothie has separate entries for both “family-size” and “half batch” servings.
- Quick and Simple Recipes for Every Day? I was excited about the “every day” theme of this cookbook. The recipes are intended to be quick and simple for consumers with busy lifestyles. However, I felt like this theme was lacking in some of the recipes. There are a handful of recipes that include an entirely separate recipe as one of the key ingredients and many require a prep + cook time over an hour.
- No Nutrition Information: As a dietitian, nutrition information is important to me and my clients. While this topic is mentioned in the book’s introduction with a link where readers can find these numbers online, I would have liked to see nutrition information actually printed alongside the recipes.
Want to try one of Angela’s recipes for yourself? Below is a recipe for her Sun-Dried Tomato and Garlic Super-Seed Crackers that will get you hooked on everything there is to love about Oh She Glows!
Sun-Dried Tomato and Garlic Super-Seed Crackers
vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, soy-free, dairy-free, peanut-free, shellfish-oil, fish-free, nightshade-free, bean & legume-free
Makes 35 (2-inch) crackers
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 53 to 55 minutes
These elegant, chewy crackers are fit for a high-end bakery! Infused with sun-dried tomatoes, oregano, garlic, oats, and a slew of nutritious seeds, they taste like pizza, but they’re full of health benefits. The combination of seeds is rich in healthy fatty acids and antioxidants, and the recipe is both gluten-free and tree nut-free. They may look intimidating to make, but they come together incredibly fast and easily. If you’ve ever been intimidated by rolling out cracker dough, you have to try this recipe; the dough doesn’t even require a rolling pin. Simply spread it out with your hands!
- 1/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes (dry, not oil-packed)
- 1 1/2 cups boiling water
- 1 cup raw hulled sunflower seeds
- 1 cup gluten-free rolled oats
- 1/4 cup hemp hearts
- 1/4 cup raw pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
- 1/4 cup white sesame seeds
- 2 tablespoons black sesame seeds or more white sesame seeds
- 2 tablespoons whole chia seeds
- 3 tablespoons ground chia seeds*
- 1 1/4 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 large clove garlic, grated on a Microplane
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon coconut sugar or natural cane sugar
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt, or to taste
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 300°F. Line two standard baking sheets (13 × 18 inches) or one extra-large baking sheet (15 × 21 inches) with parchment paper.
- Place the sun-dried tomatoes in a bowl and cover with the boiling water. Set aside to soak for 5 to 10 minutes.
- In a large bowl, stir together the remaining ingredients.
- With a slotted spoon, scoop the softened sun-dried tomatoes out of the soaking water and transfer to a mini food processor, reserving the soaking water. Process the tomatoes until minced. Alternatively, you can chop the tomatoes by hand—just be sure to chop them very fine so the crackers are easy to slice. Scoop the tomatoes into the bowl with the seed mixture.
- Add the tomato soaking water to the bowl with the seed mixture. Stir for about a minute, until the water has been mostly absorbed by the seed mixture and is no longer pooling on the bottom of the bowl.
- Transfer half the seed mixture to each baking sheet (or if using one extra-large baking sheet, spoon all of it onto the sheet). With your hands, spread the mixture starting in the center and pushing outward, until you form a large, misshapen rectangle, no more than 1/4 inch thick. The mixture will be very wet, but this is normal. Be sure that the dough is uniform in thickness and the corners aren’t too thick.
- Bake for 30 minutes. Remove the baking sheet(s) and using a pizza slicer, carefully slice the dough into large crackers. Carefully flip each cracker using a spatula or your hands. Don’t worry if a couple break here and there! If for some reason the crackers are sticking to the parchment paper, just leave them as is and remove them after the second bake.
- Return the baking sheet(s) to the oven and bake for 23 to 25 minutes more, until the crackers are golden. Watch closely during the last 5 to 10 minutes of baking to ensure they don’t burn. Remove from the oven and let cool on the baking sheet(s) for 5 minutes. Transfer the crackers to a couple of cooling racks and let cool completely. Store the cooled crackers in a paper bag on the counter for up to 1 week. You can also store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week or in a freezer-safe zip-top bag in the freezer for 3 to 4 weeks. If the crackers soften while storing (this can happen in humid environments), toast in the oven at 300°F for 5 to 7 minutes, then let cool completely. This is usually enough to return their former crispness!
*To make ground chia seed, in a high-speed blender, grind 1/2 cup chia seeds on high until a fine powder forms. Store any unused ground chia seed in the fridge in an airtight container.
Enjoy these crackers with various toppings and spreads. A few of my favorite combinations are roasted red pepper hummus, smoked paprika and sesame seeds or mashed avocado, sriracha and hemp seeds!
Recipe reprinted from Oh She Glows Every Day by arrangement with Avery Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) LLC, A Penguin Random House Company. Copyright © 2016, Glo Bakery Corporation.