3 out of 5 stars.
New disclaimer due to new Amazon rules: I was gifted a free electronic copy of this book by Herald Press, via Netgalley. I am not being forced to post a review; I am doing it of my own free will as I enjoy reviewing.
On advice from Amazon, and based on their emailed reply – “My review is given voluntarily and the Author/publisher does not require a review in exchange or attempt to influence my review.”
Although this is a reprint of an older book, this is the first time I have read a copy, and so my review is purely based on this edition of the book.
What can I say… It’s okay, but not exactly my thing. I mean, it ticks all the right boxes by being recipes that use whole foods, nothing fancy or expensive, and nice and simple recipes… It’s possibly a good guide to someone new to cooking? But for me, it was still missing something. I mean, there is a difference with cooking flavourful foods on a budget, and just relying on masses of cheap strong in flavour ingredients like onion and garlic to provide the flavour for the entire meal. I know this is a bias of mine, due to my allium intolerance, but I have no time for recipes that rely solely on allium to make a meal.
Then there is the heavy Christian influence. Another bias by not being a Christian I guess! There is nothing wrong with other people’s religions and faiths… But I am yet to see the point in them being rammed down my throat in a main stream cook book. Harsh of me, I know. Especially as the cover of this book does warn you it is a book created by a Christian faith and so it more likely than not going to contain religious banter.
The book is also obviously for an American audience as the measurements are all in imperial and not metric. This isn’t a big deal to a seasoned cook… but may stump a few newbie cooks who work in metric, until they find themselves a good online conversion table to help them out.
All in all, it was a good starter book for someone who is new to cooking, can tolerate loads of allium (they’re going to have to with this book) and is okay with Christian banter in amongst their recipes. But I am not the right reader for any of that and so I was wrong for the book. Not the other way around, please realise that. I believe this book to be good, written and shared in the best intentions and I hope it helps many a new cook out there. This old cook and obviously grumpy old Pagan just isn’t the right reader. 🙂
Would I recommend this book to others?
That is a really hard call as this wasn’t a book for me, but it did have a lot of good points. I guess I would say if you want a simple, budget friendly cook book and can cope with the beliefs of those who wrote it – go for it. Check this book out today. If recommending to my close friends? I just wouldn’t. There are much better cooking whole foods on a budget books out there in my opinion.
Would I buy this book for myself?
I think everyone has already guessed the answer to this one! 😉 No, I wouldn’t. But don’t get me wrong, there are a few recipes in there I wouldn’t mind trying… but that is like a few half dozen in a book of hundreds of recipes and I don’t keep cook books I can only cook a few items from. Those are the books I borrow, copy the recipes out of (referencing them appropriately) and then return to the library.
In summary: A basic, budget friendly cook book, but not one for me.
Until next time,