Friday, April 20, 2012

A Giveaway inspired by Rhonda Hetzel's Meatless Meals Challenge...

"From an immediate perspective, living simply frees up financial resources which can be transferred to those in greater need. It also reduces the burden we place on the environment. In a wider context, a simple lifestyle is a living example of an alternative way - a way in which not all needs are insatiable, in which endless material progress is not the main goal in life. Finally, living simply keeps us honest." - Oxfam Shop's Vegetarian Cookbook, p15

Rhonda Hetzel from Down to Earth has set herself the challenge of reducing her household meat consumption by 50% as part of her aim to live a sustainable, simple lifestyle.

Being 100% vegetarian myself I don't have any meat intake to reduce, but yesterday whilst I was browsing through the comments left by her readers, many of whom have decided to join Rhonda in her challenge, I was inspired to participate in my own way.

In 2006 I purchased a wonderful vegetarian cookbook from Oxfam shop (now also online). By this time I'd already been vegetarian for a few years but was struggling to find new, interesting, healthy recipes to try. Then one day whilst I was in my local Oxfam shop I found this wonderful vegetarian cookbook.

What makes it so great is that it's more than just your regular cookbook. It introduces the reader to the two different forms of vegetarianism (vegan and lacto-ovo, of which I am the latter), and explains how proteins work in the human body, with each recipe promoting a balanced vegetarian diet where all vitamins and minerals are present.

It also provides an introduction to the health, environmental and economic benefits of eating less meat, and there's information on simple living for humans and their pets.

The recipes found in the book include entrees, main courses and desserts, and are grouped into their respective countries of origin. In a multicultural country like Australia we are blessed with having access to so many different kinds of foods and this little cookbook introduces its user to a variety of new, previously unconsidered ingredients. But the best thing about this book is that there is great variety between the recipes and they are not overly complicated or time-consuming (most recipes have a preparation/cooking time of around 30 minutes).

Having been vegetarian for a decade now, I tend to no longer refer to recipe books: The ingredients and instructions for the food I cook is either known by heart or kept in a lever arch file for easier access. So, this wonderful little cookbook from Oxfam has been sitting in my bookshelf, no longer used, and I cannot help but feel it is going to waste. I figure Rhonda's challenge is a great opportunity to give this book new life and let it provide information and inspiriation to a new cook, one who is serious about reducing their meat intake. I don't expect everyone to become vegetarians, but being conscious of the amount of meat we eat and doing something to keep it to a minimum is not only good for you and the animals, it's also good for the environment and the world community as a whole.

If you'd like your chance to win my used-but-otherwise-in-good-condition copy of the Oxfam shop's Vegetarian Cookbook all you have to do is leave a comment on this post.

Entries will be taken until midnight (Australian Central Standard Time) on Friday, 18 May 2012. The winner will be announced sometime over that weekend (19 - 20 May).

Giveaway is open to anyone and everyone from anywhere, as long as they don't mind receiving a secondhand cookbook (that is in good condition. Promise).


Whilst I'm here, babbling on, I'd like to thank Rhonda from Down to Earth for considering my modest blog worthy enough to make her Weekend Reading List for this week. I'm perplexed and humbled ~ thank you. I've been a regular reader of Rhonda's blog for a number of years now and I recommend everyone take the time to check it out if they haven't already. Her book is fantastic too.

I'd also like to send out a big "hello and welcome" to any new readers that visit my blog via Rhonda's. I hope there is something here to interest you, and thank you for taking the time to stop by.


  1. Would love to win this book. Thanks for offering it up.

  2. You just go ahead and put my name down for that second hand book ;) looks awesome!

    Very kind of you to offer it, too :)

  3. Oh cool, what about me, can I enter? lol!


  4. I've just found you via Rhonda, I see you got her book for your birthday recently ...snap.. I got it yesterday for mine.

    You have a beautiful Blog and sentiments very similar to me, I'll be back soon.

    Sue xx

  5. Hi Sorcha
    It's really interesting to hear about other people's experiences of being Vegetarian. And I've not heard of the book you've mentioned, but I will go take a look at it. Protein is always the talking point with non-veggies, don't you find? So many people think that only meat/fish contain protein ... yet there is so much to be had from vegetables, grains and pulses, isn't there? I could go on for far too long in this comment !! But I won't. Thank you for the recommendation of the book. Don't put me into the giveaway ... I wouldn't want to win and find it costs you more than the price of the book to post it to England! But good luck to all your other readers :-)
    Happy weekend!

  6. We've been reducing out meat intake here over the last year or two, but I find it hard vegetarian recipes that will keep my meat loving husband and two kids interested. The book looks wonderful.

  7. I just found your blog via Rhonda (love your envelope tutorial by the way!), and I would love to win this book! The cover has such lovely vibrant colors - it surely brings joy into the kitchen!
    I am already a vegetarian (ovo-lacto, too) for quite some time, but I am stuck and can't seem to think beyond my usual recipes lately...

    Thanks for letting go of that beautiful book and for the chance!


    keejah (at) gmx (dot) de

  8. I love that you are recycling and helping other vegetarians at the same time. I would love to win this book.I have been vegetarian for about 5 years, and in my busy home with 5 children I find it hard to cater to my own dietary choices. as one of only 2 vegetarians in our household I still cook meat almost daily. I would love to try out more veg meals that maybe the whole family would enjoy, instead of cooking for them but eating for me.
    I hope you will send a note with the book to whomever receives it will your favourite selections in the book. There is nothing better than trying out a recipe that someone else has reccommended.
    Lynn in Ontario, Canada

  9. My husband and I are both seniors and we or should I say I would like to reduce our consumption of meat.
    I'm having a little trouble getting motivated with the distinct lack of interesting and budget friendly vegetarian recipes especially as we have both been lifelong meat eaters. My most valued and much used cookbooks are secondhand so yours would fit right in and feel right at home here in the glorious Adelaide Hills.

  10. oh I've just found your blog via Rhonda. I've looked at this book more than once and wondered if it would be worth getting. I'm the only vegetarian in my family of 6, but I'm always looking for meatless meals that will please the whole family. I'd love the chance to win this book and like Lynn I think a note marking your favourite recipes would be lovely.

    cheers Kate

  11. yes please put me in the draw too.. I am not a meat eater and am always looking for ideas for decent meat free meals.. thanks for giving us a chance to win.. :)

  12. I love the Oxfam online shop - just bought two birthday presents plus mothers' day gifts without leaving the house. Gift buying without leaving the house... priceless :) Liesel

  13. We eat meat but not every day. I hate the idea that animals are farmed for me to eat and I hate the fact that other people think this is ethical. I could certainly do with some ideas to improve our diet while simultaneously contributing to a reduction in farmed animals.

  14. Hi Sorcha, have come across your blog via Rhonda as well, my family and I have never tried to go meatless but if we are lucky enough to win this book will be giving it a go, am now looking forward to exploring more of your past blogs. Cheers, Cathy

  15. Hi Sorcha, I too have found your lovely blog through Rhonda and am now looking forward to reading more of it. Our family have never tried to go meatless before but if we are lucky enough to win the recipe book will certainly be inspired to do so! Cheers, Cathy

  16. Found you via Rhonda's blog. I am vegetarian also. This is a wonderful giveaway. God bless you for doing it.

  17. Hi I actually found you through a link from your Mom. My girls would not be caught dead blogging - they think it is their moms strange addiction. I would love to win that book -thanks for offering this giveaway. Have you read any of the Moosewood recipe books? - I have had those for years, and they are very stained and well-used.

  18. thanks for this giveaway

  19. Found you on Would love to enter your giveaway.

  20. Thank you so much for the chance to win your book! I am a meat eater,but I am looking to increase the amount of no meat meals in our diet. :)

  21. Hi, I am over from rhondas links :) I eat some meatless meals but would love to know more healthy varied ways to prepare vegetarian meals.
    Fingers crossed for us all
    Liz S

  22. Hi, I found you via Rhonda. I am in here for the book :)

    I am a mother of two. I used to be a lacto ovo vegetarian for several years before becoming pregnant with my first. Though I told myself that I'd be a vegetarian again one day, I had not been able to see how it'd happen, or whether it would! Till recently I read 50% less meat challenge by Rhonda. That was kind of a turning point, where somehow I started to gain back my confidence in meat less meals. Since I followed the forum thread she created, I had been able to prepare some meatless meals for the family. But deep in my heart I doubt myself with this idea of getting back to vegetarian with two little ones. My two girls are eating what we are eating. To cook them a balance meatless meal is my biggest challenge, the source of my self doubt. So a book like yours would give me some reassurance and directions to go a little further (I am hoping).

    But I suppose the fact of just getting the book from you would be the biggest motivation more than anything.

    Anyway, whether I get it or I don't thank you for such giveaway. And thank you for inspiring...

  23. Since the new blogger set up, I am finding I am missing comments in my "awaiting moderation" list. I am receiving notice of the comments via email, but I am unable to find them in this list.

    One such comment was from the lovely elflyn, who wrote:

    "I'm a vegetarian but I have three little boys and one big boy who are not. Sometimes cooking 2 meals for dinner can become a little overwhelming, I am always looking for new ideas.
    Thanks for offering a lovely giveaway."

    If you have left a comment for me but it hasn't appeared here, please let me know. My email is sorcha (dot) sidhe (at) gmail (dot) com.



Thank you for taking the time to visit my blog. I really appreciate any suggestions, feedback and comments you may like to share, so please don't be afraid to leave them. It'd be wonderful to see you return again!