EVERYDAY FOOD AS MEDICINE NEW website review by Elice Thomas
EVERYDAY FOOD AS MEDICINE
Since this is a cookbook, I decided to review not just the quality of the recipes contained within, but to also consider their accessibility, affordability and – since this is a health-conscious cookbook – their health benefits. I chose to try out their oven-poached tea and raspberry pears with baked ricotta as a dessert, and the roast turmeric chicken with lime and cashews for dinner.
At first glance, Everyday Food as Medicine seems a great addition to a cook’s library if they are working towards a healthier diet and want to expand their knowledge of healthy foods. Make no mistake – this cookbook does a fantastic job of that. Dr Kerryn Phelps and Jaime Rose Chambers, the co-authors and mother-daughter team, explain in easy terms the different benefits of the wide variety of foodstuffs available to us, and which foods to choose when making health-conscious meals and snacks. Their book is split up into several major areas of concern – gut and heart health, energy foods, anti-inflammatory foods, and foods that affect the mood. Each section contains a multitude of recipes covering every meal time, from breakfast to dessert, and insightful notes from each author about why they have chosen the ingredients that feature in each meal. Scattered throughout the cookbook, two-page spreads on other areas of health and lifestyle are also discussed at length, such as the benefits of fasting and effective game plans for new mothers. All in all, Everyday Food as Medicine contains a wealth of thorough and practical knowledge on improving diet and switching to healthier food alternatives when planning meals.
However, while this cookbook is incredibly insightful and helpful, I noticed almost immediately that it is not a cookbook for those cooks who need to take cost and accessibility into consideration. In almost all of their recipes, Phelps and Chambers have chosen ingredients which are very healthy, but also expensive, and sometimes only found in specialised health food stores. They provide two different meal plans at the beginning of the book, one for omnivores and the other for vegetarians, that include many of the recipes from the cookbook. As a simple way to gauge the effectiveness of these meal plans for the average Australian to follow, I added the ingredients to two different shopping lists – one for each plan – and calculated the cost to follow each for a week. Using the cheapest ingredients, each plan came out to more than $500 (and the omnivore plan even reached $700 owing to a lot of meat products). For once my background as a cashier at a supermarket is useful, because I know immediately that that is well above the average weekly spend for an average Australian family. While creating the shopping lists, I realised that many of the ingredients are only found in the health food aisle, and typically these ingredients are pricier than other, arguably less healthy, alternatives, due in part to their limited popularity and high production costs. So while the meals themselves are definitely health-conscious, it comes at the cost of accessibility. Where there are options between a basic, cheap food item or a more expensive (but healthier) alternative, Phelps and Chambers have usually opted for the more expensive one. Further, another important observation I made is that many of these recipes ask for a lot of ingredients considering they only serve 4 people – for example, the cottage cheese pancakes ask for 8 eggs; not to mention that these are not ingredients the typical person will already have in their pantry. I think it is quite telling that the authors do not address the cost of their recipes anywhere in the book, considering this is a cookbook as much about lifestyle change as it is providing delicious and healthy meals. I wholeheartedly agree that a healthy diet can prevent or help better manage chronic illness, as well as lengthening life expectancy, but not everyone has the means to radically change their diet or begin buying more expensive versions of food staples, such as quinoa instead of rice. Cost should be just as much of a consideration as taste and health benefits when crafting a cookbook.
In reviewing this cookbook I tried out two different recipes. I made the turmeric chicken over the weekend and liked the result. It was very tasty, especially with quinoa instead of rice (I definitely need to use quinoa more often), and the variety of vegetables added a lot of different textures and tastes that made the whole dish better. Chambers and Phelps do a fantastic job of explaining each step in an easy-to-follow way, and overall the recipe itself was very easy to make. I substituted chicken drumsticks instead of Marylands due to the cost, and couldn’t find nigella seeds – but the recipe suggests cumin as an alternative. I was very happy with this dish and so were my housemates – I would make this again. As dessert I tried out the poached pears as I’ve never had poached pears before, and the ingredients caught my attention – pears brewed in Earl Gray tea, white wine, and raspberries sounds delightful. And it was! These pears were absolutely delicious. The Earl Gray came through especially strongly and added a nice aromatic layer to the dessert, and the ricotta paired so well, balancing out the intense sweetness of the pears. Like the chicken, the recipe was again very easy to follow and make, and most of the ingredients were affordable or I could find them at home. So overall, both of these recipes were delicious and I would make them again, but more than likely I’d wait until a special occasion.
If you aren’t overly concerned about affordability and want to explore a healthier lifestyle, this cookbook would do well on your shelf. Each recipe comes with background on their health benefits, and throughout the book the authors discuss various areas of concern and ways to help yourself combat illness and fatigue. The recipes themselves are easy to follow, easy to make and delicious. However, the health benefits of these recipes come at the cost of accessibility. I would recommend picking one or two recipes for the week or fortnight ahead and double the servings to use as leftovers, to keep costs down but still benefit from these much healthier recipes.
review by Michael M
Two dishes cooked following the recipes I arm Barley Chickpea and Asparagus Salad: Delicious salad. Light and fluffy. Full of goodness and nutrition. Amazing combination of flavours with an extra point for being vegan fetta cheese.
II Mushroom Tempeh and Soba noodles stir fry Delicious stir fry with an amazing flavour and mix of vegetables. Highly recommended for a light summer stir fry meal.
LONELY PLANET FOOD THE WORLD"S BEST EXPERIENCES LONELY PLANET"S GLOBAL CHOCOLATE TOUR FOR CHOCOLATE LOVERS website RATE: 5/5
I remember my conversation long time ago with the girl at work when we were making afternoon coffees at the kitchen. I noted: "People are such animals when it comes to food..." The girl replied carelessly: "The animals never had chocolate" We laughed. I still remember this conversation. I am not a top fan of chocolates but I appreciate its finest brands and top quality products that are available in majority now on the market. The choice is so diverse and the variety is extremely interesting. You can still have your simple milk, dark and white but the additions are now go into: sea salt, orange, strawberries, coffee and so much more.
In its series "The World's Best Experiences" Lonely Planet released a new book called "Global Chocolate Tour. For Chocolate Lovers". It is not only for those of who travel. Nowadays you can virtually travel all around the globe and visit best places and museums. But of course, I hear what you will say: "taste buds..."
The book is focusing on six continents and takes us on the exciting journey as the introduction says, "from the camel milk in Dubai to the honeycomb in Australia..." The world of chocolate presented to us is eclectic and complicated. One coffee table book of course could not cover it all considering the variety of chocolate places in France and Switzerland but the book included the favorites of Lonely Planet. The book chapters include "The Beans" where we find out about the flavours, origins, process of preparing and variety; the chapter devoted to types of chocolates before the travel to continents starts and we stop on Africa and Middle East that focuses on top cocoa growers. We travel country to country from Ghana to UAE passing Israel, South Africa on the way. Each page has a paragraph devoted to "what to do nearby" when you are in region. This part of the book finishes with 10 distinctive Hot Cocoas from all over the world.
"The Americas" part of the book centers on Top 8 chocolate ice creams. It takes us through Argentina's most favorable chocolate places to Canada's chocolate museum, chocolate makers, companies that produce chocolate truffles. We pop in to Cuba, Ecuador, Mexican, Peru, USA most famous confections and NY top chocolate-themed restaurants, This part of the book finishes with the top chocolate festivals around the world while the part Asia of the book starts for unfold in front of our eyes...
Asia's central points are Top 3 Chocolate Cities... and here is goes in alphabetic order from India's chocolate factories to Japans' chocolate bars, from Malaysians labs to Philippines chocolate gardens. from Taiwan's delights to the ending of Top 10 Chocolate Treats in Asia.
"Europe" part follows with its top 5 chocolate cities and the journey that starts in Austria takes us on its sweet tour Belgium and Eastern Europe to France's bonbons, Germany's best black forest cakes, Netherlands experiences, London's chocolate ecstasy tours, cocoa houses, This part of the book finishes with 10 Intriguing Chocolate Flavours Pairing.
The book directs us them to Oceania with Top 3 Chocolate Destinations. The one that is most famous and we know in Melbourne, Australia is Koko Black. I wish I could go there now but no chance till the lockdown is over.
The book is accompanied with so many gorgeous photos, each story about the chocolate place contains its history, culture, mouthwatering experiences, people behind the businesses with their passion and much more.
As to my personal discovery and surprise I fond out about some hidden gems in Melbourne myself which I intend to visit soon.
The book is a hard cover with 250 pages and 150 stories told. It is one more delicious creations by Lonely Planet that you will enjoy!
Warning: the book browsing will sure make you very hungry to say the least... craving for some chocolates? There is only one pity about this book: I wish it was made out of my favorite chocolates with orange peels.