In “The Phillipses Eat a God Damn Vegetable” News

I think I’m becoming worse at making gravy as I get older. It used to be a skill I innately possessed. No longer. Now it’s always either lumpy or runny. Last night, it was lumpy and runny.

But we did have peas, which are among my favorite vegetables.

I’m thinking of getting a vegetarian cook book. Not because we want to become vegetarians, obviously, but because we’d really like to eat substantially more vegetables and it seems like that’s going to require incorporating them into more than just the way we’ve been flopping them on our plates next to the meat. We need to regularly move vegetables to the center of the plate, so to speak.

Any recommendations?


23 thoughts on “In “The Phillipses Eat a God Damn Vegetable” News

  1. How the heck did you get that to embed so beautifully?!

    I would love to call your mom–“I have a carrot, some garlic, and I guess I could pick some wild onions from the yard. What can I make? WHAT CAN I MAKE?!”

  2. I have books! Lots of books. I have three awaiting review, actually. But the best is How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman. There’s even an app for it. Or you could just read a bunch of food blogs. And if you type what ingredients you have in Google, you’ll get a lot of ideas, too. I actually do that. Also! Tastespotting or Foodgawker -> vegetarian, then search. But there’s a lot of complicated shizz on there.

  3. I agree that you’re going to be much better off with something like Bittman than if you go out and buy a specialized vegetarian cookbook – the latter is going to assume you have a ton of special things in your pantry that are just ridiculous.

  4. …but there aren’t too many fresh veggies that can’t be chopped up, dressed with a vinaigrette, and served as a salad.

  5. I actually think that getting a general cookbook for a cuisine that routinely uses a lot of veggies is the most helpful thing to do. An Indian cookbook, or many Middle Eastern ones, will have a lot of examples of putting veggies into the heart of the meal, including into meat dishes. And once you learn the general tricks, you can generalize them.

  6. I LOVE my vegan cookbook. I worked hard picking it out and have been really happy with everything I’ve cooked – as have others I’ve fed. Remind me and I’ll look up the title when I get home.

  7. We are trying to eat more veggies also, and apparently roasting them with spices and olive oil is the most flavorful way….I am going to try that next.

  8. Also, along the lines of what nm is saying, it would help to just learn how to make a stir fry. I do keep fresh salad fixings prepared in the fridge when I can so I can just dress them and eat, but stir fry is not as dependent on that freshness – you can use some frozen or canned veggies as well, and things you might not normally want in a salad.

  9. Mom would love to field that question. I’ma email you digits this evening, in case you don’t still have em.

    All I did was paste an Amazon link and the internet did the rest.

  10. I love veggies, but my husband really likes at least a little flavor of meat in anything, so we ended up with this: the simplest side dish in the world. Snip up a few slices of bacon (we do turkey bacon) into little bits, fry, and about halfway through, dump in a can or two of peas. You can adjust the meat/pea ratio however you like, but either way you get this mix of smoky and sweet that I just love, and it couldn’t be easier.

  11. We often sautee veggies; just use a tad of vegetable broth plus any spices etc and it comes out fine.
    Grilling, microwaving and sautee is the best way to cook, steaming is not.

  12. On the same course as what nm said, I find myself combining veggies with meat a lot more now after spending so much time with my baby food cookbook. Not that I would necessarily recommend it for you (you were given better and more applicable suggestions) but once you start thinking in those terms, it suddenly becomes very easy to work lots more veggies–even “weird” ones–into your daily routine.

    I go about things differently than kosh. I never microwave to cook veggies; I steam or sauté depending on expected nutrient retention. (There are lots of suggestions about how to preserve as many nutrients as possible in that cookbook.)

  13. Oh, and learn how to make dirty rice: sautée* some onions and garlic and bell peppers, spices you like, throw in some mushrooms,** whatever other veggies you have around,*** then if you have some meat add that,**** then rice, any kind of broth or water (and salt if necessary),***** cover, simmer, and there you are. This is a great meal for unexpected guests, because it can be extended almost indefinitely by adding more rice and liquid.

    *in any sort of vegetable oil, or bacon fat or chicken schmaltz

    **I guess you would skip that part

    ***fresh or frozen or canned or leftover, whatever

    ****again, either raw or leftover will work; this is how I use up chicken left over from making soup

    *****if you save the water from steaming or otherwise cooking vegetables with water, it makes a nice quick broth for such occasions

  14. I love you guys. And, believe me, if I could, to reward you, I would feed you all nm’s greens, which really are so delicious I think they could cause world peace–at least for as long as the greens held out.

  15. Clean the greens and dry them and slice them very thin. Heat some oil or animal fat in a skillet, put in spices you like, put the greens in and stir them until they wilt and are coated with the fat, toss on a couple of tablespoons of water or broth, cover and steam quickly, remove the cover and let the remaining liquid boil off. Enjoy. You can add raisins (soak them first, add them and the soaking water as the liquid). Or other dried fruit, sliced thin and soaked etc. Or nuts (cook them in the oil first, remove them, and put them back at the end). You can cook shallots or onions or garlic or peppers in the oil/fat first, but not too long.

    Conversely, you can go all Julia Child and cook slices of onion and carrot until they are soft, then add the greens (which can be chopped more coarsely), add some wine as well as broth or water, and cook it all for a loooooong time on the back of the stove or in the oven, while you are cooking the rest of the dinner. This works best with watery winter cabbage or older, tougher greens. Spring greens shouldn’t need it.

  16. Leaf based food: Get some leafs — whatever kind you like, romaine lettuce works well. Wash, tear in pieces, put in great big bowl.

    In a second bowl, mix up bite sized pieces of some of the following — Fruit (apples (splash of lemon juice to keep them from browning) and strawberries work well), nuts, cheese, onions, bell peppers, cucumber, celery, carrots, egg, chicken, bacon, anything else you can find of that might go well in a salad. The more the tastier (if it’s possible to have too many things, I haven’t hit that point yet)

    When you’re ready to eat, put some lettuce in your eating dish of choice, add a little store bought dressing if you like, and then some of the tasty mixture on top. Eat.

    I usually keep the leafs and the topping separate and leave off the dressing until the last minute so it’ll last a few days in the fridge. Then it’s mostly ready whenever I want some.

  17. “salad in a mason jar” is currently all the rage – just google it. It is a good idea, especially for packing lunches. But the trend is getting a bit crazy, what with everyone thinking they’re original.

  18. I was a vegetarian for a few years long, long ago (yes, there was a woman involved). One of my favorites was Mollie Katzen’s Moosewood Cookbook. The original is long out of print, though you might find it at used book shops. There is a slightly revised version available from all the usual suspects. The stuffed squash recipe (available online at was my go-to Thanksgiving dish during that time and I still make it occasionally today.

  19. I think it was K. who did a vegan challenge when she was with the Tennessean, where she and some co-workers went vegan for a month and she finished up and said that she felt like she came away with a handful of recipes she was going to be incorporating into her everyday life.

    Thanks kind of what I’m hoping for–expanded possibilities.

    The parmigan brussel sprouts I had last night, for instance.

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