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Published on May 7th, 2012 | by Shyam das | Full size image


Vegetarian Cooking – How to Cook Delicious Vegetarian Meals

Making Vegetarianism Work for You

If one is new to the vegetarian way, and they are used to cooking with a lot of meat, it may be a little bit challenging to make nice, satisfying, wholesome meals, suitable for a vegetarian diet.

One way to make it work is to understand how to make wholesome meals which can meet all of your nutritional needs. There are many delicious varieties of combinations of foods to do this.

Some of my personal favorites are Rice & Dahl with vegetables such as a Subji and/or a salad. Chapatis are a wonderful addition to this combination. Some veggie-burger sandwiches are a wonderful treat, as well. Pasta with panir/cheese or tofu in a tomato sauce, with a large salad is another wholesome favorite. There are many possibilities for delicious and wholesome vegetarian meals.

To make eating like a vegetarian work for you, a book of recipes could help a lot. There are many expert vegetarian cooks in the Hare Krishna Movement. Some of them have compiled cookbooks of some of their favorite recipes.

Books on Vegetarian Cooking

One vegetarian cooking book popular among people in the Hare Krishna movement is The Hare Krishna Book of Vegetarian Cooking, by Adiraja Dasa.

This book covers topics including utensils, combining dishes in menu-planning, and preparing, offering and eating an Indian meal. Then comes the recipes for over 120 delicious preparations, including the wonderful “Paneer sak” (steamed spinach with fresh panir/cheese). The recipes are carefully chosen by some of the excellent cooks of the Hare Krishna movement. They are diverse and relatively easy to prepare.

The Preface is written by the actress Hayley Mills.

Another book about vegetarianism is The Higher Taste Vegetarian Cookbook, A Guide to Gourmet Vegetarian Cooking and a Karma-free Diet, by disciples of A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada.

The Higher Taste is a great introduction to the philosophy and practice of vegetarianism, Hare Krishna style. It lets the reader discover the health and economic advantages, as well as the important ethical and spiritual considerations, of a Krishna conscious approach to diet and nutrition.

This book covers more than 50 recipes organized into 9 delicious meals from Italy, India, China, France, Mexico, and The Middle East.

Another famous vegetarian cook book is Quick Vegetarian Dishes, by the renowned Hare Krishna chef, Kurma Das.

“The message of Quick Vegetarian Dishes is refreshingly simple: life in the fast lane doesn’t necessarily mean life in the fast food lane…”

This book teaches how to prepare some absolutely delightful meals, without spending hours upon hours in the kitchen. Quick Vegetarian Dishes includes instructions on how to prepare 12 Rice Dishes, 14 Entrees/Appetizers, 13 Soups/Dals, 11 Breads, over 20 vegetable dishes, 12 Salads, 14 savouries, 14 Grain/Bean/Pasta Dishes, and over 40 recipes in the Desserts/Drinks section.

Another book by Kurma das is Vegetarian World Food.

“In his latest release, Kurma compiles his greatest culinary hits, assembling the best vegetarian fare from cultures around the world. Here you’ll find the most popular ethnic recipes from his previous titles, including the best selling Great Vegetarian Dishes (now in its seventh printing!), Cooking with Kurma and Quick Vegetarian Dishes.”

Vegetarian World Food Includes flavorful offerings from Europe, South America, South East Asia, the Middle East, India, and the Mediterranean.

Where to Start?

Click here to browse a selection of Vegetarian Cooking Books, Hare Krishna!

Vegetarian Cooking DVDs

Videos are a nice way to learn how to cook things as well, since you can see the process in action. There are DVD’s available here: Cooking with Kurma  Great Vegetarian Dishes DVDs

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8 Responses to Vegetarian Cooking – How to Cook Delicious Vegetarian Meals

  1. aspendougy says:

    Several weeks ago, at the Hare Krisha Temple in Los Angeles (Hollywood area) I attended the feast to commemorate Sri Prahupada’s Birthday. It was on a Monday.

    I was served a cauliflower dish at the feast. I e-mailed the restaurant to get the recipe, but never received a reply. Can you get me the recipe? Thank you

    • It is the taste of the prasadam that you are attracted by, not the cauliflower. If you learn how to cook for Krishna and offer to Krishna from Srila Prabhupada then you will be able to get that Krishna prasadam taste in your cooking also.

      There are many cauliflower dishes of course. You would have to describe it more for me to give you the recipe.

  2. marvin says:

    hare krishna swamiji.
    all glories to srila prabhupada.
    I started my spiritual journey about 2 months ago so I still have many questions. and I would like to know how to offer correctly.
    these are the steps I take when offering food. please correct me if im wrong.
    I take a picture of srila prabhupada n place my food offering in front of the picture and cover the food. I then say the four prayers of srila prabhupada, his guru, lord chaiytanya and lord krishna three times each then I chant the hare krishna mantra 3 times. finally I say ” please lord krishna accept my offering”. are these correct?

    • Hare Krishna Marvin

      This is correct. Krishna accepts the love and devotion that you cook the meal with. So it is a whole meditation. Even when you go to the store to purchase the vegetables and other items you are going to cook for Krishna the consciousness should be that “I am purchasing these things so I can prepare a nice offering to Krishna.”

      So the offering is the whole state of consciousness you have from purchasing the bhoga, to cooking it, to offering it and finally to respecting Krishna prasadam.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

    • evan says:

      as i am very new but interested and know in my heart this is a good thing..could you kindly send me these four prayers your speaking of ? thank you so much..hare krishna

      • The first thing is to strictly follow the four regulative principles: No illicit sex, No meat eating, No gambling and no intoxication and chant at least 16 rounds of the Hare Krishna mantra daily and read Srila Prabhupada’s books at least 1-2 hours a day. So please do these things and you will gradually come to know all mantras automatically.

  3. Traci says:

    I’m at the very start of my Krisha Consciousness and have noticed that there is very little out there for those of us in transition. Do you think Krishna would accept a meal as long as we do the best we can to prepare it to His liking? Or is there no use even trying unless we can do everything perfect? What advice can you give to us who are neonates to the prep of His Food?

    For example. How would you purify items that have touched meat before when you can’t afford new ones?

    Thank you for your help and encouragement on my path.
    Hare Krishna!

    • Hare Krishna Traci

      Actually we are not offering things directly to Krishna. It is not the way. We have to develop a realationship with Srila Prabhupada and prepare nice foodstuffs and offer them to Srila Prabhupada. In the beginning it is better for you to make a small alter with a photo of Srila Prabhupada and a photo of the Panca-Tattva. [Lord Caitanya, Lord Nityananda, Advaita Acharay, Gadadhara Pandit, Srivas Pandit.] and make your offerings to them.

      If we want to advance in spiritual life then we have to find a way to cook and offer our food to Krishna. Otherwise Krishna states in the Bhagavad-gita that one who eats food that is not first offered in sacrifice to Visnu is eating only sin.

      So you just have to adjust. Stainless steel can be cleaned but other things like plastic and china plates should be replaced.

      You just have to make the best arrangement you can with whatever you have and prepare nice offerings from vegetables, grains, fruits and milk products and offer them to Srila Prabhupada and at the same time read Srila Prabhupada’s books and chant Hare Krishna and you will be amazed at how quickly your life is transformed.

      So just do the best you can. Srila Prabhupada and Lord Caitanya are very merciful and easy to worship.

      Chant Hare Krishna and be happy!

      Madhudvisa dasa

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