Cookbook 102: Best of Vegetarian

I’m sorry it’s been a while since I’ve posted, but February and March have been really busy for me – too busy to even cook from cookbooks.  There has been a big birthday party to organise, an international guest visiting, my wedding anniversary, illness, going away, and lots of other things cropping up on the weekend so cooking, and blogging about cooking has been near impossible.  I think, with the exception of Easter, that things have returned more or less to normal, so blogging and cooking should be back to a relatively normal schedule.

So, once upon a time I cooked from Sanitarium’s Best of Vegetarian: month-by-month recipes.  This book was published by Murdoch Books in 1993 and appears to be out of print, I cannot find a copy of it anywhere (sorry).  I wasn’t expecting a lot from this book.  For reasons (not sure which ones) I thought the recipes would be bland and uninteresting, and was expecting that at the end of the meal I’d be adding this book to the pile of books that I’d be finding new homes for.

I was surprised. The recipes I made from this book were incredible, and I am really sorry I cannot point you towards a second hand copy so you can find out more yourself.  I give this book 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Country Cottage Flan



  • 1/2 cup plain wholemeal flour
  • 1/2 cup plain white flour
  • 50g margarine
  • 3 tablespoons water


  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup low-fat cottage cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup light sour cream
  • 2 cups mashed potato
  • 3 shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chopped pasley


  1. Sift flours into bowl and rub in margarine with fingertips until mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
  2. Mix in enough water to make a firm pastry (or mix flour and margarine in food processor, then add just enough water so the pastry clings together).
  3. Roll pastry out and line a lightly greased 24cm flan tin or pie plate.  Trim edges.  Prick pastry with a fork.
  4. Bake pastry at 200C for 7 minutes.
  5. Place filling ingredients in a large bowl and mix well.
  6. Spoon filling into flan shell.
  7. Bake at 200C for 30 – 40 minutes or until top is golden brown.  Serve with salad of choice.

Notes on this recipe:

  • By shallots they actually mean shallots and not spring onions.  Though it probably wouldn’t matter too much if you can’t find (or don’t like) shallots.
  • This was tasty, like a mashed potato quiche.  It was fully consumed and there was none left to have again later.

Eggplant Terrine


  • 600g eggplant
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup plain white flour
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 3 tablespoons grated soy cheese (or low fat cheese)
  • 1 cup mashed potato

Tomato sauce:

  • 2 teaspoons oil, extra
  • 2 medium onions, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 425g can tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


  1. Cut eggplants into 1.5 cm slices.  Sprinkle evenly with salt and stack slices on top of  of each other.  Stand for 30 minutes.
  2. Rinse eggplant under cold water and drain on kitchen paper.
  3. Toss eggplant slices in flour.  Heat oil in a non-stick frying pan and brown both sides of eggplant over a medium heat.  Set aside.
  4. Heat extra oil in a frying pan.  Stir-fry onion until soft.  Add rest of sauce ingredients and simmer for 2 minutes.  Remove from heat.
  5. To assemble: Place 1/2 cup of Tomato Sauce mixture into a lightly greased 12×26 cm loaf tin.  Place a layer of eggplant over top of sauce.  Sprinkle with two tablespoons of the cheese and press the mashed potato firmly over eggplant.  Repeat with another half cup of Tomato Sauce and another eggplant layer.  Pour over remaining Tomato Sauce and sprinkle with rest of the cheese.
  6. Bake at 200C for 45 minutes.  Stand for 20 minutes before turning out.
  7. Service slices with baby carrots, tiny potatoes and squash.

Notes on this recipe:

  • Oh this was so incredibly tasty.  I really need to make it again so I can enjoy it a second time.
  • I am always amused when a recipe book tells me that i can cook any quantity of eggplant in only 1 tablespoon of oil.  It’s not very likely.  You’ll probably need more oil – eggplant LOVEs oil, which is why it’s so tasty.

Butterscotch Self-Saucing Pudding


  • 1/2 cup plain wholemeal flour
  • 1/2 cup plain white flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup Sanitarium Sultanas
  • 3 tablespoons margarine, melted
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 4 tablespoons Sanitarium So Good soy drink
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla


  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups boiling water


  1. Sift flours and baking powder into a bowl.  Add sugar and sultanas.
  2. Combine margarine, egg, So Good and vanilla in a small bowl.
  3. Stir liquid ingredients thoroughly into dry ingredients
  4. Spoon batter into medium-sized, round casserole dish.
  5. To make sauce: Sprinkle batter with extra brown sugar.  Pour boiling water gently over batter.
  6. Bake at 190C for 40 – 45 minutes or until cooked.

Notes on this recipe:

  • I’m always a bit disappointed when I make self saucing puddings as they’re drier than I expect them to be.  You can see the very small amount of sauce in the picture above.  I think I need to bake them for a shorter period or in a cooler oven.
  • I didn’t have any sultanas (well I did, but they’d gone off) so they’re missing from this recipe.  They would have added extra sweetness, so I should have added more sugar to make up for their lack – my bad.
  • I will try this again, with variations (milk instead of soy milk as I rarely have that in the house, and additional sugar) to see if I can get it right.