Anna Jones’ Californian recipes | The Modern Cook (2024)

When I first started spending time in California, I remember walking into brightly painted cafes in LA, such as Cafe Gratitude or its east-side sister, Sage, and being so excited by the food.

The menus read like something from a diner but the ingredients were a list of farmers’ market veg, spices, grains – stuff I cooked with at home. As a vegetarian 10 years ago, it felt like a huge novelty to be able to eat anything on the menu – food that felt like a treat but made with a rainbow of good stuff, and it has influenced how I cook.

I find LA an endlessly inspiring place to cook, eat and find new ideas, so this week’s recipes are an ode to those first inspiring meals, which I still crave: a spiced carrot burger with spiced roast carrots, tofu and smoked paprika, which is loaded with more veg in the shape of an avocado salsa, and a rainbow veg bowl, which is the kind of thing I eat for lunch or dinner in spring and summer.

Roast carrot burger with avocado salsa

This has become our favourite veggie burger. I make this using vegetarian parmesan, but you could use a vegan cheese instead. Once cool, the uncooked burgers can be wrapped and frozen for up to four months.

Anna Jones’ Californian recipes | The Modern Cook (1)

Prep 30 min
Chill 1 hr
Cook 40 min
Makes 6 burgers

600g carrots, peeled and cut into 1-2cm-thick rounds
1 tsp sweet smoked paprika
1 tsp cumin seeds, roughly bashed in a mortar
Salt and black pepper
Olive oil
200g smoked or firm tofu
100g breadcrumbs
1 small bunch flat-leaf parsley, chopped
Zest of 1 unwaxed lemon
60g grated (vegetarian or vegan) parmesan
50g sesame seeds, toasted

For the salsa
2 avocados, stoned and roughly chopped
100g cherry tomatoes, roughly chopped
Juice and zest of 1 lime
3 spring onions, finely sliced
½ bunch coriander, finely chopped

For the quick pickled radishes
½ bunch radishes, finely sliced
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
½ tsp salt
1 squeeze honey
, or a pinch of sugar

To serve
6 burger buns, split and toasted

First, roast the carrots. Heat the oven to 200C (180C fan)/390F/ gas 6. Tumble the carrots on to a baking tray with the smoked paprika, cumin, some salt and pepper, and a good drizzle of olive oil. Cover with foil and roast for 20 minutes, then remove the foil and roast for a further 10 minutes, until completely soft and starting to brown.

While these are roasting, finely crumble half the tofu into a bowl and add the breadcrumbs, parsley, lemon zest, parmesan and sesame seeds.

Once the carrots are ready, take them out of the oven (leave the oven on if baking your burgers), leave them to cool a little, then blitz in a processor with the remaining tofu, until everything is evenly distributed and the mixture is pretty smooth.

Leave to cool a little, then add this to the breadcrumb mixture and mix well, using a spoon to mash and persuade everything to come together. If your mixture looks a little dry, add a couple of tablespoons of olive oil or water until it comes together nicely.

Shape the mixture into six patties, lay them on a plate, then put in the fridge for an hour.

Once you’re ready to cook, put a large frying pan over a medium heat and add a little olive oil, swirling it to coat the pan. Add the burgers, and cook for three to four minutes on each side, flipping when well-coloured – or bake for 25-30 minutes. If you are barbecuing the burgers, brush them with oil before cooking on one side, flipping only when they are coloured and crisp enough to come away from the bars easily.

While the burgers are cooking, make the salsa,; add all the ingredients to a bowl, season well, give it a good mix, then set aside.

For the pickle, put the radishes in a bowl, cover with the vinegar, add the salt and honey/sugar, and mix well.

When the burgers are nearly done, split and toast your buns.

Spread one half of each bun with a spoonful of mayonnaise, then top with the lettuce leaves, a little salsa, burger and a tablespoon of the pickle.. Cover with the bun lid and eat straight away.

LA rainbow bowl

This is great for a fresh, quick lunch on the go, and can easily be put together in a tiny office kitchen or on a picnic rug in the park (you can bring the hummus, dressing and cooked grains, plus the raw veg and a speed peeler to peel them right into the bowl). I often make a version of this at home for lunch, and you can swap the veg for what’s in season and change the quinoa for another grain, too.

Anna Jones’ Californian recipes | The Modern Cook (2)

Prep 20 min
Serves 2

Juice of ½ lemon
1 chilli (I use green), chopped
150g good-quality, shop-bought hummus
2 raw beetroot
3 carrots
3 asparagus spears
100g cooked quinoa
1 handful cresses or sprouts
1 handful herbs (I use a mix of basil and mint)
50g toasted mixed seeds

For the dressing
½ orange, juiced
½ lemon, juiced
1 tbsp maple syrup
3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

Anna Jones’ courgette recipes | The Modern CookRead more

Stir the lemon juice and chopped chilli into the hummus and give it a good mix – this can be done in advance, if you like.

Whisk together all the dressing ingredients and put in the bottom of a large bowl, if you’re eating right away, or in a jar, if you’re eating later.

Divide the hummus equally between two bowls and swirl it around the bottom, so it roughly covers the base of the bowl.

Using a speed peeler, mandoline or sharp knife, finely slice the beets and carrots, keeping them separate. Using the same peeler, peel long ribbons of raw asparagus.

Drop each of the veg one by one into the bowl of dressing, tossing each one before putting a bundle of veg in each bowl.

Pile in the quinoa, top with cress and herbs, and finish with the toasted seeds.

Anna Jones’ Californian recipes | The Modern Cook (2024)


Is Anna Jones Married? ›

I also try to get out of London as much as I can. My husband John is a surfer, so we often head to the Cornish coast at the weekend, which resets us all.

Is Anna Jones a vegetarian? ›

“It's quite a natural way of cooking for me because my brother and sister are both vegan, and me and my husband, we're vegetarian,” says Jones. “I always set myself a challenge because it meant double the recipes to test.

What was Anna Jones first cookbook? ›

In 2004, Jones participated in Jamie Oliver's Fifteen apprenticeship programme, and her first cookbook, A Modern Way to Eat, was published in 2014 to huge success.

Does Anna Jones have children? ›

Her husband John and their two sons, 8-year-old Dylan and 1-year-old Esca, all “absolutely love the area” and, though they've toyed with the idea of moving out to somewhere on the sea, Anna insists that a permanent London exit won't happen anytime soon. “This is somewhere we can live endlessly,” she says wistfully.

Where does Anna Jones live? ›

Anna Jones is a food writer, stylist, and author, based in London.

Who is the female vegetarian chef? ›

Anna Jones is the acclaimed author of the popular vegetarian cookbook, A Modern Way to Eat. She is an advocate for promoting a healthy lifestyle and believes that vegetables should be at the heart of every table.

Is Jennifer Garner vegetarian? ›

Jennifer Garner loves to share videos of herself cooking via Instagram and Facebook in an adorable and informative series she has dubbed “Jennifer Garner's Pretend Cooking Show.” While Garner is not vegan, she has shared several meat-free recipes.

Is Mary Berry a vegetarian? ›

No, Mary isn't vegan however she has written a number of vegan, vegetarian and plant-based recipes!

What is the oldest cookbook still in print? ›

The first recorded cookbook that is still in print today is Of Culinary Matters (originally, De Re Coquinaria), written by Apicius, in fourth century AD Rome. It contains more than 500 recipes, including many with Indian spices.

What was Julia Child's occupation before her first cookbook at 50 years old? ›

Julia Child worked in advertising, media, and secret intelligence before writing her first cookbook when she was 50, launching her career as a celebrity chef in 1961.

Who was the first black woman cooking show? ›

Lena Richard (September 9, 1892 or 1893 - November 27, 1950) was a chef, cookbook author, restaurateur, frozen food entrepreneur, and television host from New Orleans, Louisiana. In 1949, Richard became the first Black woman to host her own television cooking show.

Is Anna Foster still married? ›

Foster is married and has three children. She lives in County Durham in the North East of England. In 2019, Foster opened up about her mental health to ChronicleLive, in which she has Obsessive–compulsive disorder.

How many children does Anna Botting have? ›

Anna and Nick have two children - Gracie, who was born in late 2012 and a son who was born in 2015.

Who is Rosemary Church married to? ›

What is Anna Jones doing now? ›

Anna Jones is an English journalist and news presenter who currently presents for Sky News from 8pm to midnight each Friday-Sunday.

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