I am a cookbook junkie. All of those cliches about people reading cookbooks like novels apply to me. Let’s be clear. I also read novels. Lots of them. But on my quest to eat delicious, healthy (emphasis on delicious!) foods, I check cookbooks out from the library, prowl through them and then buy them if I’m seduced by at least half of the recipes. It turns out that I’m seduced by a lot of them because I cannot even fit another one into my dedicated cookbook pantry library. And now there is this one.
Healthy in a Hurry: Easy, Good-For-You Recipes for Every Meal of the Day by Karen Ansel and Christina Ferreira
Here is what I like about it.
- The photography is fantastic! Beautiful. I am tempted to eat the pages.
- The recipes use simple, common foods and not too many “weird” ones. This category, according to my mom, (Hi, Mom!) includes tofu, quinoa and fennel.
- The layout is recipe on one page, photo on the facing page. No flipping back and forth! YaY! and thank you.
- Attempting to make healthy eating easier, the authors include tips for planning meals, keys for success and a guide to super foods.
- Most recipes include a side bar explaining the nutritional benefits of some of the ingredients. It’s always good to feel better about the ingredients.
- The authors have a strong nutritional background. Not necessary, in my mind, but nice.
And a few things that I have some reservations about:
- There is some in-depth nutritional data when it comes to healthy eating in the intro, but not on the recipes themselves. Do I care about this a lot? No. I do not.
- The authors and I disagree about the use of saturated fats in our diets. They call some oils healthy and I strongly disagree. That doesn’t mean I won’t make a recipe and switch up the oils or fats to align with my health goals.
- Many recipes feature whole grains. I don’t regularly consume grains so I’m left out on these recipes. However, I’m delighted that the focus is whole grains for the recipes that include them.
- In the recipes which have sweeteners, brown sugar and granulated sugar are included along with more “natural” sweeteners. I know that sometimes a sweetener sends a recipe over the top, but I will always choose a less processed one. Some recipes do use maple sugar or honey for the sweetener.
- Um. The cover. Why would anyone put cooked tomatoes on the cover? I don’t know.
Who should check this book out from their library and read it? Everyone. Who should buy this cookbook and try to cram it in their library? People who are trying to feed their family a less processed, healthy diet. Or people who just like looking and beautiful food pictures. Sigh.
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