Posted in Vegan Recipes

2018 Cookbook Challenge – February round-up

2018 Cookbook Challenge – February round-up Posted on 07/03/201814 Comments
Ahoy, hello! My name is Jenny. I am a thirty-something human female from Manchester in the north of England. I enjoy rainy days and sad songs, custard donuts and salt & pepper chips and beer, lentil dhal and fried okra, X-Files and Twin Peaks, fierce fat heroines and mental health advocates, dogs and cats and otters and a very special beirdo. To paraphrase Sylvia Plath: "I blog because there is a voice within me that insists on writing lots of ridiculous chuff".

Hallo friends, and welcome to my summary of February’s efforts for my 2018 cookbook challenge. If you want to catch up on the first post and commit to joining in (and picking a book if you like) see the first post here.

As I’m writing this on the 7th of March, month three, this might give you a bit of an idea of how little I have my shit together right now (or have for the past month or so). February was bonkers. Massive props to N for putting a few of these dinners (and breakfast) together. Because srsly if not I would’ve eaten toast for a month most likely.

Here’s what we managed to make (a feeble effort again, sozzlepops.)

Dilly stew with rosemary dumplings.
Dilly stew with rosemary dumplings.
Fluffy pillow pancakes.
Fluffy pillow pancakes.
Mushroom barley soup.
Mushroom barley soup.
Curried peanut sauce 'bowl' (SOOOO GOOD).
Curried peanut sauce ‘bowl’ (SOOOO GOOD).
Seitan and wild mushroom stew
Seitan and wild mushroom stew (slightly underwhelming but I think I added too much liquid – but my pressure cooker seitan was pretty good [see below]).
Pressure cooker seitan that isn't -quite- good enough to recipe share yet.
Pressure cooker seitan that isn’t -quite- good enough to recipe share yet.
Tofu-mushroom stroganoff (SOOOO GOOD).
Tofu-mushroom stroganoff (SOOOO GOOD).

There were plenty of recipes that we wanted to make but didn’t, particularly the Glam Chowder and a couple of the puds. But 2018 marches on and we’re already 7 days into March. I agonised slightly over which book to choose for this month but finally settled on one that’s relatively new to my collection. All y’all without a pressure cooker (American translation: Instant Pot) can stand down pretty much, because this is my March choice:

A cookbook called "Vegan Under Pressure"

The contents page from "Vegan Under Pressure"

Some photo pages from "Vegan Under Pressure"

So thar she blows, and it’s steam (STEAM) this month all the way. I’m using my delightful Pressure King Pro (or PKP) but you can use more or less any if you want to play along. Oh, you’ll also need the book I guess but if you have an IP/PKP in your kitchen I’m guessing you probably also have a vegan cookbook with pressure cooker recipes in too? Personally I’ve had to learn how to make a few basics from scratch and I ALWAYS put too much liquid in, choosing to completely ignore the science of how the thing actually works. Hey, maybe by the end of this month I’ll get over that? That would be an achievement at least.

Let me know if you’re playing along this month, or waiting until we get back to regular stove-top cooking!

Check out Jennifer’s post about Isa Does It over here!

Joey’s been cooking from Crazy, Sexy Kitchen, checkit here!

Susan has been joining in over on Instagram, yay!

(Did I miss you? I’m sorry, let me know!!)

Follow me:

Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | Mailing list


  1. I’m not organised enough to follow along at the moment, but I wanted to comment to say that that dilly stew is possibly my favourite dinner EVER! Must try the strogonoff now since you recommended it.

    1. The stroganoff was a big hit! It’ll definitely be on rotation now I think. Any stew with dumplings gets a massive thumbs up from me. We had ours with pickled red cabbage on the side which was superb.

  2. I ended up making quite a bit from IDI over February, I am planning on doing a round up post of them on the blog soon. I had fun. 🙂 Will be sitting out this month, I am pressure cooker free, but excited to see what you make and to see what April’s book will be. 😀

    1. I’m hoping the weather will make me feel a bit more summery by April so we can choose something less ‘hearty’!

  3. Everything looks delicious; Isa Does It is such a great cookbook! I don’t have a pressure cooker, but I’m looking forward to seeing what you make from the new cookbook this month!

    1. It really is such a super book, though I think Appetite for Reduction -just- pips it for me. The pressure cooker is an interesting experiment and I’m still adjusting, but the brown rice it makes is always perfect!

  4. Those fluffy pillow pancakes are real winners.

    No “American translation” necessary, but I don’t have a pressure cooker. Standing down, but curious to see your results next month.

  5. I think that photo is getting me in the mood to make the dilly stew! Looks so good! Although my husband hates dumpling-stew dishes. But the dumplings are sooooo good!

    It looks like you guys made a good bit from the book! I am always impressed that no matter how many recipes I’ve made from the book, it seems like there are always tons of new recipes that people make that I’ve haven’t tried on their review.

    Sadly, I don’t have a pressure cooker so I will be sitting out this month T__T

    1. I love dumplings so hard. When I was little my Nana used to bake them in muffin trays, so they were all crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside. So good!

  6. I don’t have this book, but I have just started cooking through Kathy Hester’s book, so that’s my choice for March!

    When pressure cooking, make sure you reduce your liquid by 1/4-1/3 – I do 1/3 for most things and 1/4 for things I want very soupy.

    I need to write up my roundup for this book but… it will take soooooo long as I’ve cooked so much from it!

  7. Save me a bit of the dilly stew. I have a deep and abiding love of dumplings. I’d be up for some barley too. As well as making me want to eat all your food, you have also given me a gift of knowledge by finally revealing what an Instant Pot was – did not know it was the US name for a pressure cooker. I’m going to try making Bowls of Goodness for March, but the month seems to be running away from me a bit. Onwards and upwards and all that.

    1. “Instant Pot” is one specific brand of pressure cooker, not an American term for the whole range of cookers.

      1. Ah yes, I did know that, I was being slightly puckish since I always have to run two searches on Google/Pinterest; one for ‘pressure cooker’ recipes and one for ‘Instant Pot’ 🙂 It’s a bit of the Hoover/Walkman syndrome I think.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.