I tasted this book before I read it. Eric Tucker, chef of the famous San Francisco gourmet vegetarian restaurant, Millenium, was in my neighborhood for a food demonstration and tasting. I had already decided to eat healthier, but was wary of vegetarian fare – especially desserts – which I’d found chalky or bland, like eating the cardboard box of the granola cereal. But I was wrong.
The servings were generous and tasty, and the desserts could rival any cream and butter concoctions I’d buy in a pastry shop. Whether or not I could replicate any was questionable, but I bought The Millennium Cookbook anyway – always hopeful.
What did I eat at the tasting?
- Appetizers: Raw Daikon Radish Rolls, Grilled Flatbread, Black Bean Torte and Grilled Meyer Lemon Salad.
- Entrees: Almond and Black Pepper Crusted Portobello, Mushroom and Walnut Strudel, Indian Rice and Lentil Crepe
- Finally, dessert: Chocolate cake (made with tofu), pecan pie (with flaxseeds and brown rice syrup), almond biscotti (with soy), and Millennium Fruit Crisp.
The book has been on my shelf for awhile – along with many other good intentions, and I had tucked the tasting menu inside. When I decided to finally try to cook healthy, I found not even one of the salads or entrees on the menu in the book. I only have a fleeting memory of the good taste, but I was determined to try to relive the flavor.
The tasting menu listed the ingredients for the Grilled Meyer Lemon Salad: chicory, greens, shaved radish, fennel, and red onion, chopped fresh mint, and topped with toasted pistachios, chopped dates – then dressed with Meyer lemon and extra virgin olive oil vinaigrette. Not too hard – I decided to forego the grilling, since I wasn’t sure what to grill. It turned out to be a light salad – different taste from Chef Tucker’s but still good.
Luckily, all the desserts were in the cookbook; the fruit crisp was similar to others I’d made that were not so healthy. The recipe is posted on Potpourri.
The book is back on the shelf – a reminder of trying to be good – and an invitation to visit the restaurant on Geary Street in the Hotel California.