Lora’s the definition of a globe-trotter—having lived and traveled in Tel Aviv, Paris, New Delhi, Rome, Bali, and Byron Bay, she’s no stranger to international flavors—and her adventurous spirit is the guiding principle of Veggies for Carnivores. From an edamame-and-pea dip spiked with umeboshi, a salty Japanese plum paste, to a ginger-lime tonic deepened by the molasses-like flavor of jaggery, an Indian sugar, she uses what she’s found through her relentless exploration of the world’s markets to bring powerful flavor to simple vegetable preparations.
And though she brings elements of her worldly knowledge to each dish, her recipes return to the basics: “I’ve pared my recipes to the point where you can almost cook from the same ingredients everywhere—what you can get in New York, you can get in Rome,” Lora says. Though she thinks fondly of the fresh, hand-delivered tofu and curry leaves that she can only find in Bali, Lora uses ingredients like maple syrup, coconut oil, and apple cider vinegar to replicate exotic tastes in home kitchens.
Her stories pull you in, and her recipes inspire. They taste unexpectedly fresh and new, even when made with dead simple ingredients and preparations. Lora returns to fundamental flavors again and again to bring out the natural best in vegetables. She calls them her “basic building blocks,” and here are her favorites:
Lora’s Top Five Building Blocks
- olive oil
“It works in any dish and won’t overwhelm the ingredients’ natural flavors. The finished product won’t necessarily seem like an Italian dish because the olive oil will fit in, a chameleon.”
“It brings out food’s best flavors and elevates them. When I think of Paris, I think of the Le Marche Boulevard Raspail… France happens to have some of the best salts—they could be harvested a mile apart and yet taste so different.”
- red chili flakes
“Red pepper brings a lovely round flavor to food, but not too much of a kick—so people who don’t necessarily like hot food won’t notice. They’ll just tasted a deepened flavor.”
“A little bit of lemon or lime is subtle but powerful. You can use the zest for a surprising twist—it’s fresh and crisp.”
- a knife
“It speaks for itself. What are you going to do out there without a knife?”
Try out Lora’s recipe for coconut-roasted broccoli below (featuring olive oil, salt, citrus, and a knife!), and enter the giveaway to win your own copy of Veggies for Carnivores.
adapted from Veggies for Carnivores
Prep time: 15 minutes
Total time: 1 hour
Makes 4 servings
- 1 bunch broccoli
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- zest of 1 lime
- kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 375˚. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or a Silpat liner, if desired.
Prep the broccoli by slicing the florets off the stems and cutting into bite-sized pieces as needed. Use a vegetable peeler to remove the tough outer layer of the broccoli stems and chop the stems into bite-size rounds.
Drop the coconut oil on the baking sheet and place in the oven for 30 seconds to liquefy the oil, or heat the coconut oil in a small saucepan over low heat just until melted.
Toss the broccoli on the baking sheet with the coconut oil, olive oil, and lime zest. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Roast for 30-40 minutes, scraping up and tossing the broccoli with a spatula every 15 minutes or so, until the broccoli is crispy and caramelized in spots.
Serve warm as a side, or cool completely and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Toss roasted broccoli into an omelet, with leftover rice or