cooking

Fresh from Poland


Author: Michał Korkosz
Publisher: The Experiment
Genre: Cookbook / Polish / Vegetarian
ISBN: 978-1-61519-655-5
Pages: 256
Price: $19.95

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When I think of Polish cooking, the first things that come to mind are kielbasa and pierogies. While I absolutely love them, there is so much more to authentic Polish cuisine than I ever realized. Fresh from Poland shares some yummy vegetarian dishes for us to enjoy.

No Polish cookbook would be complete without pierogies, and a basic dough recipe is provided along with several intriguing and unusual fillings. For those who want to make their own farmer’s cheese, a recipe for twaróg shows us how. Various bread recipes tempt us, along with scrumptious desserts like pączki and angel wings. The main dishes and sides are filling, nutritious, and tasty, made from all natural ingredients.

Fresh from Poland is natural Polish cooking at its best. The recipes are carefully itemized, and there are full color photos of every dish. The book opens fully, remaining open on the table for ease of reference while cooking. Whole foods are prepared in delicious combinations to create a wonderful feast for the senses. I highly recommend this cookbook for any home chef who is interested in exploring some delightful new Polish dishes.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

cooking

The Quick & Easy Healthy Cookbook


Author: Carrie Forrest, MBA, MPH
Publisher: Rockridge Press
Genre: Cookbook
ISBN: 978-1-64152-963-1
Pages: 186
Price: $17.99

Author’s website
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Making the decision to switch to a whole foods diet can be difficult. Many recipes are time-consuming and complicated, making the assumption that you have access to specialized markets and exotic and super expensive ingredients. The Quick & Easy Healthy Cookbook provides simple recipes that are healthy and taste great, without requiring a huge investment in time and money.

This cookbook has 125 recipes that cover the major categories: breakfast, soups & salads, vegetarian main dishes, seafood, poultry, meat, snacks & sides, basics & extras, and desserts. Some of the yummy and super healthy ideas include Cinnamon-Raisin Breakfast Cookies, Sweet Potato & Chickpea Curry Bowls, Pineapple Turkey Burgers, and Edible Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough.

Carrie Forrest runs a clean eating website that showcases even more of her healthy recipes. She has a master’s degree in public health nutrition, and knows how to prepare healthy food that isn’t a chore to create. The Quick & Easy Healthy Cookbook would be a great addition to any health conscious cook’s bookshelf.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

cooking, health

The One-Pot Weight Loss Plan


Author: Shelley Rael, MS, RDN
Publisher: Rockridge Press
Genre: Cooking, Diet
ISBN: 978-1-64611-048-3
Pages: 267
Price: $16.99

Author’s website
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The calendar is once again inching toward January 1st, and thoughts of losing weight this year may have crossed your mind. While it may be tempting to jump for one of the “lose weight fast!” plans, they may not be your best option. Instead, Shelley Rael has created some easy to prepare meals that can help you shed the pounds once and for all.

Speed and easy cleanup were the goals in creating healthy meals for your slow cooker, skillet, sheet pan, and more. Prep time is usually less than 20 minutes per dish, and meals are cooked in one pot for a minimum of dishes. Ingredients are all readily available in most supermarkets, and no “fake foods” are included. Along with the recipes, a 28-day plan guides you on your journey to healthy eating.

I did not personally test these recipes, but there are quite a few that sound yummy. Overnight oats, smoothies, and even desserts are featured, along with the standard soups, casseroles, and skillet dishes. If eating this well can lead to weight loss, this book is sure to give you the success you’re looking for. I highly recommend The One-Pot Weight Loss Plan.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

children, cooking

Tina Nordström’s Recipes for Young Cooks


Author: Tina Nordström
Publisher: Skyhorse Publishing
Genre: Cooking / Children
ISBN: 978-1-5107-1706-0
Pages: 112
Price: $16.99

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Kids throughout the ages have always been able to whip up a batch of cookies, but how many have tackled an entire gourmet meal? For those who have always wanted to try, Tina Nordström’s Recipes for Young Cooks gives them the tools to do it.

Before they get started, Kitchen Basics 101 covers what kids need to know to navigate the kitchen. Tools, terminology, and techniques are provided that will help them master the 28 recipes. These are categorized by Good Morning!, Cooking Weekday Meals, Dazzle the Grownups, Hanging Out With Friends, and Sweets. Each recipe covers a two page spread with photos of the finished product as well as ingredients lists and simple step-by-step instructions.

Adults would also find this cookbook useful, since the recipes are for meals enjoyed by all. However, those who don’t have access to specialty grocery stores might be limited in finding some ingredients. Kids can do these (mostly) by themselves, but they might enjoy getting together for a cooking session with friends or preparing a meal with a parent. I highly recommend Recipes for Young Cooks.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

children, cooking

My First Baking Book / My First Juices & Smoothies

My First Baking Book
Author: Becky Johnson
Publisher: Hamlyn
Genre: Children / Cooking
ISBN: 978-0-600-62966-5
Pages: 128
Price: $9.99

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Baking is so enjoyable, especially when putting silly faces and sprinkles on cupcakes and cookies. Created to be a hands-on experience, these recipes allow kids to have fun in the kitchen. Parental guidance and assistance is essential, since recipes may contain many ingredients or have hard preparation steps.

My First Juices and Smoothies
Author: Amanda Cross
Publisher: Hamlyn
Genre: Children / Cooking
ISBN: 978-0-600-62967-2
Pages: 128
Price: $9.99

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Yummy recipes for juices consisting of: all fruits; fruits & vegetables; and fruits, veggies and dairy/non-dairy milk or yogurt to make smoothies. This book is designed to get kids to eat more fruits and veggies in a way that tastes great and is easy to consume.

Snapshots of the drinks and snacks, as well as the kids enjoying them, accompany the recipes in these vibrant and colorful books.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

children, cooking

Ella’s Kitchen: The Big Baking Book

Ella's Kitchen: The Big Baking Book
Publisher: Hamlyn
Genre: Children / Cooking
ISBN: 978-0-600-62844-6
Pages: 192
Price: $19.99

Website
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In the follow-up to Ella’s Kitchen: The Cook Book, this yellow one is chock-full of baking ideas. But it’s not limited to just desserts. Lots of baked lunch and dinner creations are also included.

Ella’s Kitchen cookbooks are designed with children in mind. Kids are actively encouraged to participate in the assembly process, and tips are included, showing which steps are best left to little hands. Full-color pictures of the completed dishes fill the book, along with smiling children’s faces expressing how much fun it is to make and eat healthy food.

Recipes are healthy, low in sugar and salt, and in some cases gluten-free. They also include an abundance of mild spices, fruits and vegetables, designed to tantalize young taste buds and encourage them to eat a variety of foods. If you’re looking for a healthy cookbook that you can share with your kids, Ella’s Kitchen: The Big Baking Book would be a wonderful addition to your collection.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

cooking

Kitchenability 101

Kitchenability 101
Author: Nisa Burns
Publisher: Kitchenability Press
Genre: Cooking
ISBN: 978-0-9856430-0-3
Pages: 176
Price: $17.95

Author’s website
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It’s so easy for college students to be seduced by pizza and burgers when making meal choices. But are they only choosing these fast food options because they don’t have anything better on-hand? In Kitchenability 101, Nisa Burns shows college students that there is a better way to eat, and it’s much easier than they think.

Kitchenability, as defined by Burns, is the ability to make one’s way around the kitchen. In this book, she provides recipes that can be crafted in dorm rooms or small apartment kitchens. Access to a few tools – stove, blender, good knife, etc. – is required, and some recipes are simpler than others.

Why choose a cheeseburger, when you can have a mint and cucumber sandwich? [bread, cream cheese, cucumber slices, and mint leaves] Maybe a chili burrito is more your style? [tortilla, canned chili, salsa, shredded cheese, and sour cream] Or try your hand at one of the recipes that call for some simple cooking, and treat your friends to a nice meal after mid-terms.

Although some of these recipes are a little more complicated than I expected, they look yummy, and are much healthier than anything you might find on campus. If you’re looking to get creative with food and enjoy some home-cooked meals, Kitchenability 101 would be a great “textbook” to keep in your dorm room.

Reviewer: Alice Berger