Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Cookbook Review: Supermarket Healthy

Supermarket Healthy
by Melissa D'Arabian
Clarkson Potter

Supermarket Healthy is a cookbook geared towards faithful fans of Melissa D'Arabian's cooking show on the Food Network. I found most of the recipes to be a departure from her the simple, $10 meal recipes that she features on the show. It is a dense volume of recipes that cover 11 chapters: breakfast, snacks, soups/stews, salads/wraps/sandwiches, veggie mains, pasta, fish/seafood, chicken/turkey, beef/pork/lamb, sides, and dessert. Each recipe features healthier alternatives for certain ingredients such as coconut or soy milk, low-sodium broths, quinoa and brown rice.
When I read the title of this cookbook, I assumed that the recipes would be highly approachable for the average home cook. However, my initial impression as I thumbed through the pages was that most of the recipes did not appeal to me as either a cook or an eater. Almost every recipe had a little twist to it (ingredient-wise) that made me shake my head and move on to the next page where the sentiment was repeated. Again, if you're a fan of Melissa's show or Food Network in general, you'll want to add this to your collection. If you're just a home cook looking for new, simple recipes that have easily attainable and affordable ingredients from your local grocery store, you may want to do a little more research before you decide that this is the cookbook for you.

Author Bio: (from the Random House website)

Melissa d'Arabian was a corporate finance executive before becoming the host of Food Network's Ten Dollar Dinners and Cooking Channel's Drop 5 Lbs with Good Housekeeping. She also developed the FoodNetwork.com seriesThe Picky Eaters Project, serves as lead judge on Guy's Grocery Games, and is the author of the New York Times bestselling cookbook Ten Dollar Dinners. Melissa has an MBA from Georgetown University, and lives with her husband and their four daughters in San Diego.

For more information on this cookbook, visit the Random House website.

Disclaimer: I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.


Cookbook Review: The Recipe Hacker

The Recipe Hacker: 
Comfort foods without gluten, dairy, soy, grain or cane sugar
by Diana Keuilian
Front Table Books

Diana Keuilian writes the blog, RealHealthyRecipes.com. With this cookbook, she sets out to share her healthy take on classic, comfort food by recreating the recipes into healthier versions that are free of gluten, dairy, soy, grain or cane sugar. 

In the opening of the book, she explains that when you eliminate these ingredients from your recipes, you must fill in the gaps with healthier alternatives. Her favorite substitutions are flax meal, coconut flour, blanched almond flour, almond meal, coconut palm sugar, pure maple syrup, raw honey, coconut milk, and coconut oil.

This cookbook has five chapters which cover every meal of the day:
  • Breakfasts - Recipes for pancakes, waffles, and other baked goods along with hot cereal and egg recipes. Since I enjoy making homemade sausage patties, my favorite recipe in this chapter was Roasted Pepper Sausage
  • Appetizers - Vegetables appetizers, meatballs, pulled pork sliders, and dips
  • Main Dishes - Several pizza recipes featuring homemade pizza crust, numerous fish, chicken, beef, and pork recipes
  • Sides - A recipe for cauliflower rice that is featured in different "rice" dishes, numerous recipes for breads including tortillas, cornbread, flatbreads and biscuits just to name a few, vegetable dishes, and sauces
  • Desserts - The final chapter covers all of your favorite desserts - cakes, pies, cookies, and brownies
If you have decided to eliminate ingredients such as gluten, dairy, soy, grain or cane sugar from your life, you may want to investigate this cookbook to get ideas of foods you can continue to enjoy with just a few substitutions of ingredients.

Disclaimer: The publisher provided me with a copy of this cookbook; however, the opinion expressed here is my own.