Fields of Greens: New Vegetarian Recipes from the Celebrated Greens Restaurant

Overview

The opening of Greens Restaurant on San Francisco Bay in 1979 changed forever the image of vegetarian cooking in America.  From the restaurant's imaginative mix of casual elegance, exciting tastes, and a subtle message of health and harmony, a distinctive cuisine was born that has continued to bring joy to many thousands of diners every year as well as to the hundreds of thousands of readers who delight in The Greens Cookbook. In its latest incarnation, the restaurant has evolved toward a lighter, ...

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Overview

The opening of Greens Restaurant on San Francisco Bay in 1979 changed forever the image of vegetarian cooking in America.  From the restaurant's imaginative mix of casual elegance, exciting tastes, and a subtle message of health and harmony, a distinctive cuisine was born that has continued to bring joy to many thousands of diners every year as well as to the hundreds of thousands of readers who delight in The Greens Cookbook. In its latest incarnation, the restaurant has evolved toward a lighter, leaner, simpler cuisine, one that keeps all the spirit and refinement of the original menu but depends more on the excitement of sparkling fresh produce and its integral relationship to the dishes it inspires.

In close to 300 original recipes, the new Greens style includes exuberant salads, soups, the legendary crusty Greens pizzas, curries and hearty stews, grilled vegetables, and intriguing turnovers made with filo pastry, tortillas, and savory doughs.  And of course there are heavenly breads and the famous desserts, like ginger pound cake with poached apricots and cherries.  This cornucopia of brilliant dishes focuses on tantalizing tastes, with a new simplicity, clarity, and liveliness as its hallmark.

Annie Somerville, the executive chef at Greens, goes right to the heart of the matter: extraordinary produce that's bursting with flavor, color, and texture.  Some of her favorites—like crinkly Bloomsdale spinach, candy-striped Chioggia beets, succulent Rosefir potatoes—are highlighted in the text for gardeners and farmers' market aficionados.  But the Greens style is above all accessible; ordinary red beets will be just fine if more exotic varieties are unavailable.  To help with availability, there's information on locating farmers' markets throughout the country as well as sources for plants, seeds, and local resources.

Because the garden is at the center of this book, readers are encouraged to try their hand, in tiny backyards and windowsill boxes if necessary.  Invaluable growing tips are offered from Green Gulch Farm, the source of much of the stunning produce served at the restaurant.  Other special features include a section on low-fat cooking and another on pairing wine with vegetarian food.

All of the abundance and exuberance that the title Fields of Greens implies is here, for the novice as well as the expert, for simple last-minute meals as well as extravagant occasions.  For truly inspired contemporary vegetarian cooking, Fields of Greens is the essential sourcebook.

Annie Somerville trained under Deborah Madison, the founding chef at Greens Restaurant.  Under Somerville's guidance as executive chef, Greens has become a culinary landmark.  Her work has been featured in Gourmet, Food & Wine, Ladies' Home Journal, SF, and California magazine.  She also contributed to The Open Hand Cookbook and Women Chefs cookbook.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Fields of Greens , the successor to Deborah Madison's enormously popular The Greens Cookbook ( LJ 5/15/87), is just as impressive as the first book. The restaurant Greens is known for its unique and sophisticated vegetarian fare, with an emphasis on fresh ingredients and flavor. Somerville, the executive chef, presents more than 300 inventive recipes, including appetizing creations like Grilled New Potato Salad, Mushroom Risotto with Leeks and Fennel, and Lemon Pots de Creme, along with lots of beautiful soups, pastas and pizzas, delicious sandwiches, and a variety of sauces and condiments. This book's appeal will not be limited to vegetarians, and the current rage for ``healthy eating'' guarantees an even broader audience. Highly recommended.
Kerri Kilbane
The adjectives "organic" and "gourmet" rarely appear side by side, but with the mainstreaming of vegetarianism, the demand for lighter, healthier, environmentally friendly menus that are creative, elegant, and palatable has spawned an impressive array of cookbooks designed to make those two adjectives compatible. From the head chef at San Francisco's preeminent Greens restaurant comes a vade mecum for the vegetarian gourmet. The 300-plus recipes cover everything from salads to desserts to chutneys and relishes. Soups, pasta and risotto, pizzas (with wild ideas such as onion confit, walnut, and gorgonzola cheese pizza), and vegetable, bean, and grain companion dishes figure prominently. Curries, stews, and rich, hearty gratins offer flavorful selections. There is helpful guidance on preparing basics, such as sauces (of 20 varieties), pizza dough (with a vegan option), breads, grilled veggies, and soup stocks. Tasty and rewarding challenges lie amid the filo turnovers, tarts, fritters, and "savory cakes." Advice on organic home gardening, tips on pairing wine with vegetarian food, seasonal celebration menus, notes on special ingredients, and a source listing make this a well-rounded resource that should tempt vegetarians (and other conscientious chefs) at all levels.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780553091397
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 4/28/1993
  • Pages: 464
  • Sales rank: 630,620
  • Product dimensions: 7.30 (w) x 10.24 (h) x 1.40 (d)

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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 15, 2008

    A true classic

    This is my go-to book for when I have a crowd of people over, or just an intimate dinner for two. The vegetarian dishes in this book display a variety of flavours and textures that make each recipe appealing to even the meatiest meat eater. I would especially note the salad section and the fantastic recipe for pizza dough.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 17, 2007

    Fabulous Vegetarian Food

    I have owned this book for over 10 years. Nearly every recipe is delicious and impressive. Her methods can be time consuming, but the end results are definitely worth it. I have learned so much about cooking from Annie's books.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 10, 2007

    Lots of recipes

    This cook book is extremely well organized. In the table of contents, under each chapter, is a full list of every recipe in that chapter. While there is an extensive collection of recipes, sauces, condiments, etc... I really didn't find anything I would want to prepare. The ingredient lists are extensive, but thankfully are not filled with exotic or hard to find ingredients. However, the prep + cook times are just way too long. While these recipes use fresh produce and other goodies, these are not recipes you can prepare after getting home from work.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 16, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 16, 2009

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