Flipping through Jamie Oliver’s newest cookbook, “Ultimate Veg,” your eyes feast first—on “sunshine” pasta tossed in a yellow pepper sauce and dusted with crushed pistachios; glossy golden yolks spilling out of curry paste-spiked scotch eggs; risotto speckled with fennel fronds and crowned with a whole roasted tomato; crepe-like pancakes dyed bright green with spinach and zapped with red-orange hot sauce. Rainbow piles of produce jump from every other page.
Such are the colorful dishes that fill the beloved British chef and restaurateur’s first 100 percent vegetarian cookbook, a project eight years in the making.
The recipes, a mix of hearty stews and curries, soups and sandwiches, pastas and oven-bakes, all enlivened with bold spices and fresh herbs, are designed to prove “just how tasty and comforting veg-based meals can be when given the respect and thought they deserve,” Oliver writes.
And they’re not just for vegetarians, he’s quick to mention: “Everyone’s welcome—especially your classic meat eater who might be stuck in a bit of a rut but knows that they could, and should, be welcoming more veg into their diet.”
Here are two recipes from the book to try, both packed with veggies—and naturally, festively green, just in time for St. Patrick’s Day.
Recipe 1: Super Spinach Pancakes
Recipe 2: Greens Mac ‘N’ Cheese