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Book Reviews

Vegan Street reviews the cookbook from a vegan paradise

Book Review:
Dining at The Ravens:
Over 150 Nourishing Recipes from the Stanford Inn by the Sea

by Jeff and Joan Stanford
review by Marla Rose

A new cookbook from the couple behind The Stanford Inn, the only vegan resort in the U.S. and in the scenic and quaint Mendocino, CA, Dining at The Ravens: Over 150 Nourishing Vegan Recipes from the Stanford Inn by the Sea is the labor of love from Jeff and Joan Stanford, who, in 1980, bought a motel and turned it into a bed-and-breakfast and eventually a sustainable, green resort. The Ravens is the restaurant at The Stanford Inn and a trailblazer with crafting artisan, vegan dishes featuring their own produce grown in their organic working farm. Can’t get much more local than that.

The cookbook is a lush and heartfelt homage to the land that spoke to them enough to follow their dreams into turning the motel into a beautiful space that reflected their values, philosophy and aesthetic. With an emphasis on fresh, seasonal and whole foods and a gorgeously vibrant plated appeal, Dining at The Ravens offers recipes from breakfast to desserts, pantry staples to entrées with ample food photographs shuffled in. While many of the recipes look like showstoppers, the execution seems straightforward enough, with vivid descriptions and simple steps described well. Some recipe highlights that I have marked for future meals: Ravens Chilaquiles; Pumpkin Seed, Arugula and Mint Pesto; Crab-less Cakes; Mediterranean Grilled Vegetable Soup with Roasted Tomatoes; Mushroom Pesto and Sun-Dried Tomato Burger; Moussaka and the Chocolate Ganache Tart shared here. This is the cookbook for anyone who wants to impress a guest or just create some delicious, plant-centered meals: The accomplished innkeepers behind The Stanford Inn show you how it’s done.

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