Book Review: The Global Vegetarian Kitchen

When The Global Vegetarian Kitchen recipe book by Troth Wells landed on my doormat I was rather eager to see what East European inspired dishes would be included.  While Eastern Europe is not renowned for its tolerance of vegetarianism there are plenty of renowned vegetarian dishes from the region.  I was rather pleased to see that of more than 100 recipes, Wells has included some East European delights in this latest book promoting vegetarianism.

The first recipe to grab my attention was the Turkish Thick Lentil Soup on page 58.  With onion, garlic, red lentils, cumin and chilli, this is a version of lentil soup which I particularly enjoyed at breakfast while in Istanbul.  This is my ideal of heaven on cold, winter days.

Rather more excitingly was the Turkish Moussaka recipe on page 108.  I would personally normally associate Moussaka with Greece but apparently this version is spelt musakka in Turkish which derives from the Arabic for chilled.

Yet another one of my favourites can be found on page 110: Mushroom Stroganoff.  The beef is substituted with chestnut mushrooms.

The ‘Swooning Imam’ or aubergine bake on page 138 particularly caught my eye.  Using onion, peppers, cumin, coriander, tomatoes and parsley, these stuffed aubergines look fantastic. It’s no wonder the Imam fainted at the taste!

For those with a sweet tooth the Russian Gramma cake featured on page 228 looks to be particularly pleasing and is complete with old family recipe (is there anything better than that?).

Of course the book also contains fabulous recipes from all over the world: America, India, The Orient etc.  This is quite possibly my favourite cookery book to hit the shelves this year.

The Global Vegetarian Kitchen
Published by New Internationalist
Author: Troth Wells
ISBN: 9781906523381
Publication date: October 2010
Price: £20.00
Available from and all good bookshops

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Lamb Meatball Soup with Vegetables

This family recipe combines flavours from the Mediterranean, the Middle East and Central Europe.  Variations of the recipe are popular in Romania, Bulgaria and in the East Adriatic region.  It can be made as a starter, or as I did, for as a hearty main course.  It is ideal for using up all your leftover vegetables.  It’s the ultimate in one pot cooking; serve it with some crusty bread and hey presto – a delicious meal!

Lamb Meatball Stew
Lamb Meatball Stew

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Pr’Potic, Stari Trg, Ljubljana


Pr’Potic lies parallel to the bar-lined river in Ljubljana which tends to attract many tourists, particularly in the summer months.  Instead, this restaurant is quieter but enjoyed by locals.  Inside are about twenty tables, dressed in white and red tablewear, and outside there is seating for about 40 people.  The menu is not vast but does boast some wonderful and traditional Slovene dishes and the service makes a meal at this restaurant worth every Euro cent.

The first time I sampled wild boar was at Hotel Toplice on Lake Bled in 2004 while staying there for my sister’s wedding.  I was excited to be given the opportunity to eat wild boar again, this time roasted rather than smoked, at Pr’Potic.  The wild boar was accompanied by a rich, warming, juniper sauce and bread dumpling and the generous portion ensured one is left feeling particularly stuffed!  In addition, the sauce contained a hearty, intensely flavoured cured meat.

Wild Boar in juniper sauce with bread dumpling
Wild Boar

It was also good to see Ljubljanski Krožnik on the menu, a plate consisting of turkey, chicken and veal.  The mixed meat plate was served with a portion of polenta and grilled vegetables.  The vegetables were crunchy and full of flavour and the meats were tender and moist.

Despite being rather large, rich plates of food which one would normally enjoy accompanied by a red wine such as syrah, the Tilia Sivi Pinot, Vipavska Dolina, 13.5% vol., 2007, a white domestic wine, was refreshing, palette cleansing and cut through the intense flavours of the food perfectly.  At present time a meal for two, with wine and water costs roughly 55 Euros.  Both a specials and lunch menu are available.  Booking is recommended.

Ljubljanski Kroznik
Ljubljanski Kroznik


Stari Trg 21




Tel: +386 (0)1 425 43 37

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Ljubljana, Slovenia

Market Band
Market Band

From Zagreb it takes just 2 hours and 20 minutes to get to Ljubljana.  Trains run semi-regularly from 5 A.M. to 11.35 P.M.  Ljubljana is the capital of Slovenia and like Zagreb, is a very pretty capital city.  The market is packed full of quaint little wooden stalls selling everything from cabbage to wine.

However, the main attraction in the city is the castle.  The castle can be reached on foot, by tourist train or by funicular, a return ticket for the latter costs 3 Euros for an adult and 2 Euros for a concession.

Vintage Car
Vintage Car

From the castle one can enjoy panoramic views of the city and the mountains which surround it.  Unfortunately, there is currently repair work taking place on the tower so views are limited.

Slovenia always has many events and festivals taking place across the country and last Saturday the Slovene Vintage Car Club were in the city, out in force.

The cars were a real delight, as were their owners who were happily sharing wine and food with the locals and tourists alike.

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