Three years ago, Jessica Seinfeld thought she was done with cookbooks. After the success of Culinary swings: more than 125 recipes to enjoy your life of virtue and vice, his collection of recipes sometimes healthy, sometimes gourmet, the author was ready to move on to other adventures. But then she started to eat differently.
“I had some health issues and several people had suggested that I cut meat, dairy, and that might help a bit,” she told me over the phone. “I started to pay attention to how I felt when I ate less of these things, and I felt better. It was pretty undeniable, how much better I felt. So I started, just for myself at home, to go out of meat and dairy as much as possible. It was not easy to take my children on board, and it was certainly not easy to have my husband [Jerry Seinfeld] on board.”
But Seinfeld continued to do the dishes, and slowly but surely her family began to care how much better they or they felt after dinner too. A new cookbook is born: Vegan, sometimes, a collection of easy and accessible recipes for anyone who grew up with a protein and starch diet as the norm. Seinfeld and her collaborator, Sara Quessenberry, purposely shopped at mass grocery stores like Walmart and Target to make sure all the ingredients are easy to find, and the recipes show where the store-bought swap (salsa in pot instead of homemade pico de gallo, for example). possible.
“I want people to feel that they are friends with this book, and that we are all trying to live more righteously and hopefully take a little better care of our planet,” Seinfeld said. “But in these pages there is no shame in needing to eat a piece of cheese or have a steak, because I am not 100% vegan. I try, but for some reason I fail when I put these third rails around me. If you eat this book once a month, once a week, or once a day, you are among friends. I think there are a lot of people who think that a gentler, more compassionate approach to eating is welcome. “
One of Seinfeld’s favorite recipes from the book is her cauliflower rice and beans. “It was the perfect comfort food in the midst of the pandemic,” she explains. “When you couldn’t miss having fresh vegetables, cauliflower is available all year round. And I always have beans, salsa, and tomatoes in my pantry. The recipe is really a reflection of this whole book, which is: where can you buy affordable, accessible, and understandable ingredients for people curious about plant-based eating? “
Try it out for yourself, below, with our latest installment of That Thing I Always Cook.
Jessica Seinfeld Cauliflower Rice and Beans
Ingredients for the beans: