Beautifully Real Food by Sam Murphy

ReviewDescriptionProduct Details

Beautiful Real Food cover art

Beautifully Real Food

Guilt-Free, Meat-Free Recipes to Indulge In

By: Sam Murphy

Our Review

I”m a “Meat & Vege” eater through and through, but I am always on the lookout for something different so I went out on a limb and decided to try some of the offerings that a vegan lifestyle has to offer. Now don’t get me wrong here, I”m not suddenly converting, although I am a strong supporter of the Meatless Monday movement, all I want is some new ideas for side dishes and salads to complement my meals.

Beautifully Real Food

The Taste of Aussie reviews “Beautifully Real Food”

Living in a very superficial society it is very easy to fall into the trap of looking only at the surface of things, hence the adage “Don”t judge a book by it”s cover”. And the same can be said for a cookbook and its recipes. Don”t assume that a vegan cookbook is only for vegans as you might be wrong, and I am pleased to say that “Beautifully Real Food” is a cookbook that everybody will find useful. When I opened the parcel from the courier and took out the book and had a quick leaf-through I must admit that my first comment was “Wow”. The beautifully bound book has some of the most mouthwatering images of the recipes, and it didn’t stop there. Before I knew it I was firmly seated at the dining-room table starting to read from the front cover.The book starts with an introduction of the author Sam Murphy and tells her story. I think I know her, or at least that was what I felt as I moved my way into the recipes. The snippets associated with each recipe also give you some sense of the author. This would probably be the first cookbook I have read that makes you feel like the author is in the kitchen with you.

Now to the book itself.

The Contents

The contents are well organised by meal type and are easy to distinguish between should you be looking for something in particular. A flick to the back of the book and there is the index, well structured and easy to follow. Also, an important element is a section on ingredients that are used in the book that you might not be familiar with.

The Recipes

The ingredients and the cooking instructions are well organised and easy to follow. The ingredients are listed in the order they are used in the cooking instructions, and where necessary there are both metric and imperial measurements for an ingredient. Some recipes reference another recipe as an ingredient. Generally speaking the ingredients used in the recipes will not be hard to find, and in some instances suggestions are made as to where you might find them. As I mentioned earlier there are snippets with each recipe and the occasional tip or hint to help with your cooking. I liked that there is ample opportunity to try new ingredients to add variety of texture and flavour and the ingredients I had to buy were not difficult to find nor were they expensive.

The Photography

Seriously I think I could taste and smell the food by just looking at the photos !!!

The Taste Test

I wanted to give the book a good workout and so here is what I ended up selecting for the Cook to try :

  • Mexican Baked Sweet Potatoes – These baked sweet potatoes are very filling and quite suitable as a standalone dish, but I had mine with some grilled chicken – perfect – (p.62) ;
  • Moroccan Chickpea & Aubergine Curry – I love a good curry and this one certainly pleased the palate. There is also scope in this recipe to tweak the ingredients to your liking. – (p.78) ;
  • Turmeric Baked Beans, Potato Hash & Sauteed Greens – I had this as a stand-alone meal and it was very satisfying with plenty of flavour (shhh, don”t say anything but a couple of poached eggs would be nice with this)(p.36) ;
  • Moroccan Chickpea & Sweet Potato Salad – Another stand-alone meal that was so delicious – I just loved the mayo so much I used the lot up on this one dish – (p.159) ;
  • Caesar Salad – This one is interesting in so much as you make “coconut bacon” as part of the dish (I”m serious. and its really tasty). This is definitely on my list to have again so I”ll have the cook make more dressing – I love dressing. (p.164) ;
  • Maple & Tahini Mayo – This mayo is well worth making. I enjoyed it – lots of it !!(p.189) ; and
  • Peanut Butter & Jelly Slice – The grandkids gave this their tick of approval and its healthy as well – give them a go !(p.233).

And there you have it, I have delved into the world of the vegan and came out with a very happy tummy.

In Conclusion

There are a lot more recipes I would like to try with each one seemingly more enticing than the previous. It has certainly broadened my thinking on vegan and healthy foods. Beautifully Real Food is a visually appealing cookbook with easy to use recipes for both Vegans and non-Vegans.

  • Will We Use This Book Again : Definitely
  • Do We Recommend This Book : Absolutely
  • Beautifully Real Food will make an impressive gift

A Look At What Is Inside

Caesar Salad with Garlic Croutons and Almond “Parmesan”
Moroccan Chickpea and Sweet Potato Salad
Turmeric Baked Beans, Potato Hash & Sauteed Greens
Beautiful Real Food cover art

Beautifully Real Food

Guilt-Free, Meat-Free Recipes to Indulge In

By: Sam Murphy

Chef Sam Murphy wanted to change her lifestyle and sort a more balanced diet. Since discovering the world of plant-based eating, she’s experimented in the kitchen and learnt how to continue eating eat her culinary favourites from burgers and pizza to doughnuts, but now, she’d looking after herself and the world around her.

With over 100 recipes, Beautifully Real Food will take you through the day from breakfast to dinner, bringing together Sam’s healthy versions of everyone’s most indulgent meals, from spaghetti carbonara, Tex-Mex cheese toasties, loaded vegan dogs, seven different and delicious burgers, salted caramel brownies, pumpkin pie, cheesecake and much more, using only vegan ingredients that allow you to enjoy a healthy, nutritious, balanced diet while eating the food you really want.

Sharing pictures of her incredible creations online, Sam has built a huge following on her imaginative Instagram feed. Sam says, “Food, for me, is about being real. It’s about honouring the beauty of real ingredients, breaking boundaries and stepping out of comfort zones and revelling in the excitement and joy that food brings. The pages of this book are drowned with love, snapshots of my creative endeavours and small whispers of knowledge – I do hope that it brings enjoyment, smiles and is well-cherished with smears from dirty, foodie fingers.”

Sam Murphy lives in Melbourne, working as a vegan chef. She grew up in Christchurch, New Zealand and for years suffered with anorexia and body dysmorphia. Discovering veganism has helped Sam combat her demons through educating herself about nutrition and diet, enabling Sam to enjoy her favourite foods whilst maintaining a happy, healthy lifestyle.

Beautiful Real Food cover art

Beautifully Real Food

Guilt-Free, Meat-Free Recipes to Indulge In

By: Sam Murphy

ISBN: 9781911274285
ISBN-10: 1911274287
Audience: General
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 288
Available: 1st April 2017
Publisher: Bonnier Books Ltd
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 21.0 x 15.0 x 2.2
Weight (kg): 0.38
Edition Type: Unabridged

Where To Buy


New Zealand

The Nile -Australia's Largest Online Bookstore

The Nile (AUS)
The Nile - New Zealand's Online Department Store

The Nile (NZ)

United States

United Kingdom



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