Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Book Reivew: Bread and Butter

A little less than two years ago, my sister was diagnosed with Celiac disease. Even though I've been fortunate enough not to have any signs of it, I figured I would check out the Bread and Butter cookbook by Erin Mckenna to see what gluten-free baking was like. Let me first start off by stating that this cookbook is very well made! With the hard cover, full colorful pages, and glossy paper (because we know it's impossible NOT to spill ingredients while baking), the book itself is great! 

I think the most important part of the book is actually in the introduction. Erin goes over the basics about the ingredients used in gluten-free/vegan baking. Many of the ingredients are not my go-to's, so I needed all the help I could get. There is also a section, The Help Desk, that covers frequently asked questions, which is very helpful. For example, the recipes were developed using active dry yeast, so NO, you should not use rapid-rise yeast. 

All-in-all, the recipes are easy to follow, and if you are on a gluten-free or vegan diet, I would recommend checking this cookbook out. However, if you aren't, I'm not sure this is the right book for you. Personally, I am not on a gluten-free or vegan diet. It seems like a lot of work to make homemade gluten-free/vegan English muffins when I can easily go buy a pack at the store. I will be giving this book to my sister, since she's been craving carbs and loves to bake!

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Book Review: Inspiralized

I've heard a lot of great things about the spiralizer, but I'm still not sure I'm convinced yet... so I decided to take a look at the Inspiralized cookbook by Ali Maffucci to decide whether or not I want to invest in one of these kitchen gadgets. The spiralizer is basically a $30 veggie cutter that cuts in 3 different ways (ribbon style, fettuccine style, and linguine style). 

This specific cookbook provides of a list of various veggies that can be "spiralized" and creative but easy recipes using those veggies. The book is filled with beautiful colored pictures of the dishes, hints and tips, and easy to follow directions. There are plenty of recipes for breakfasts, snacks/sides, soups/stews/salads, sandwiches, wraps, casseroles, "rice" dishes, pasta/noodles, and even desserts! The recipes exclude butter, dairy milk, cream, sugar, mayo, cream cheese, and white bread! There are vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free and paleo recipes (clearly classified as such)! 

I think this book, along with a spiralizer is a great gift set for your cooking friends and family who are looking to eat healthier. However, personally, I'm not sure I'm convinced to invest in the Spiralizer. I'm not sure I can really turn in my pasta for zucchini quite yet. There are plenty of recipes using other veggies and fruits, such as beets, broccoli stems, butternut squash, carrots, celery root, cucumber, parsnips, radish, apples, pears, etc., but I'm just not convinced yet. 

If you already have a Spiralizer, I would recommend checking out the book. You may find some great ideas for other ways to use your Spiralizer!  

I received this book for review from Blogging for Books!

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Book Review: The Great Big Pressure Cooker Book

Before I begin my review of the The Great Big Pressure Cooker Book, I should first begin by saying that I actually don't have a pressure cooker... YET. I selected this book mostly out of curiosity and to educate myself on the option of cooking with a pressure cooker. My mom and grandma always cooked with one, but out of fear, I just never have.

This book has a great introduction of do's and don'ts when it comes to cooking with a pressure cooker. The intro alone was enough to inspire me to actually order an electric pressure cooker (my person preference due to all the bells and whistles to the newer models). The book is broken down into chapters by breakfast, soups, meat, poultry, fish/shellfish, vegetables/beans/grains, and desserts.

There are a few things that really stand out about the recipes:
1. SUPER easy steps. Most of the recipes are only a handful of steps!!
2. Ingredients I can pronounce! I can't stand cook books with 15 ingredients I've never heard of! Most of the ingredients used are items I would have on hand or would mostly use for other dishes as well.
3. HUGE soup recipe section. Soup is one of my personal favorite foods, and I love the variety of recipes. The best part, even though I may not have a pressure cooker yet, I can still adapt the recipes for either on stove cooking, or even crock pot cooking!

All-in-all. I love the cookbook! This is such a great gift idea with an electric pressure cooker for your food/cooking loving family and friends!

Looks like I know what I'll be adding to my Christmas this year!

Happy cooking!

I received this book for review from blogging for books!