Recently I had the privilege of joining an enthusiastic crowd of Jae Steele fans in celebrating the debut of her first book and indulging in the many delicious morsels produced from its pages. Although Get it Ripe is Steele’s first book it is a compilation of recipes, resources and insights she has developed over the past seven yeasrs. During these “development” years, Stele shared her knowledge and experiences through self-published zines and her blog domestic affair. The turnout of dedicated fans was clear evidence that Steele knows what she’s talking about and has delivered the information people crave, supporting them in making healthy choices for themselves and the planet.
I had the opportunity to interview Steele following her book launch, but I was also excited to take some time to explore Get it Ripe to determine what her “fresh take on vegan cooking and living” could offer a long-teim vegan like myself. Given my reputation as a cookbook collector, you can probably correctly assume that generally for me, it is all about the recipes (how many? how complex? how amazing are the pictures?). Steele’s book provides a modest list of recipes that are reliable, delicious and contribute to a well-balanced, nutritionally sound, plant-based diet.
After bringing Get it Ripe home, I tried the Flax Maple Cookies which I had the pleasure of tasting at the book launch, and flipped through the book to discover that this inredible recipe calls for only six conventional ingredients. The results were cookies that were not too sweet and have an excellent, hearty texture. I have also whipped up Steele’s Cilantro Black Bean Dip, Fresh Tomato Sauce and Zucchini Noodles and her Barbecue Sauce. All of the recipes came together in mere minutes, were flavourful and left me satiated and enthused to try more. The recipes in Get it Ripe are all vegan and free of wheat and refined sugar.
Truthfully, this book has remained on the top of my reading pile over the last few weeks because of what it offers beyond the recipes. As a holistic nutritionist, Steele shares information that is essential to every conscious eater about the impact of what we eat on how we feel. I have found myself returning to the pages of Get it Ripe as an excellent resource of information about nutrition, detoxing, sprouting and shaopping. I even brought it on vacation with me.
Steele provides an immense amount of information and inspiration through her responses to my interview questions so I encourage you to check out the next post.
But first go give these cookies a try:
Simple Flax Maple Cookies
These cookies are free of wheat and refined sugar, with a density similar to shortbread. Makes 16-20 cookies.
2 cups spelt flour
1/3 cup flax seeds
1-1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup sunflower oil
Preheat oven to 350F. In a large bowl, combine flour, flax seeds, cinnamon and salt. Pour in syrup and oil and mix just until all the flour has been absorbed.
Allow the dough to sit for 5-10 minutes before rolling into walnut-sized balls (or slightly larger) and placing them on a lightly oiled cookie sheet.
Press down on each ball gently with your index and middle finer-they’ll flatten and you’ll make a nice wavy impression in the cookie.
Slide in the oven and bake for 13 minutes. Allow to cool on a rack, or eat them warm with a tall glass of non-dairy milk.