I’m far from a vegan. Meat is a beloved friend and I always notice when he’s missing from the dinner table. Believe it or not, I’m still interested in checking out Bryant Terry’s Vegan Soul cookbook for a couple of reasons. I’m always willing to try black cookbooks and learning new ways to prepare vegetables is always a plus—but please believe that my piece of marinated chicken breast will still be somewhere off to the side.

Bryant Terry has already managed to inspire a few kitchen gurus with his neo-soul food cooking. The following is excerpted from a recent Boston Globe article:

. . . “There is no one version of soul food,” says Terry. “I take issue with people confining it to the deep-fried fatty foods and sugary desserts, because African-American cuisine has evolved.”

“Vegan Soul Kitchen” is part of that evolution. Terry advocates replacing animal products with fruits, vegetables, and plant-based proteins such as beans, tofu, tempeh, and seitan. In a recipe for collard greens, flavor comes from a citrus reduction and raisins rather than pork fat. Other riffs on classics include a “chilled and grilled” salad of okra, corn, and tomatoes; sweet cornmeal-coconut butter drop biscuits; and a freshly-squeezed watermelon martini . . . (Read full article . . .)

Upon searching for Terry on YouTube, I discovered that Vegan Soul isn’t his first release. Check out the details on his first book, GRUB:

Grub: Ideas for an Urban Organic Kitchen

From making healthy food choices and preparing mouth-watering meals, to unmasking corporate flimflam and supporting sustainable farming, here is the complete guide for the young, the hip, the socially tuned-in – and for all who want to eat real food. In the past few decades, organic food has moved out of the patchouli-scented aisles of food co-ops and into over three-quarters of conventional grocery stores. Hand-in-glove, more and more of us are becoming aware of the social, environmental, and health benefits of organic eating, independent farming, and promoting “fair food.” Combining a straight-to-the-point exposé about the fake food filling our supermarkets and the compelling reasons for choosing organic, local, “fair” food, Grub helps all of us become a part of one of the most hopeful movements of the new century: a revolution in food and farming that is best for our bodies and the earth. With spirited and practical how-to’s for creating an affordable, easy-to-use organic kitchen and dozens of delectable recipes, Grub also offers the millions of people who buy organics fresh ideas and easy ways to cook with them. From the Valentine’s Day Decadence Dinner to the Straight-Edge Punk Brunch Buffet, Grub includes over a dozen menus paired with soundtracks to cook (and party) by and artwork and poetry evoking the spirit of Grub. If organic food has a user’s guide, this is it.

I don’t know about you, but it sure is nice to see so many black male chefs gaining such popularity. I’m excited, but must promise to remain loyal to G. Garvin. Happy reading, y’all.