Man, oh man, talk about a gloomy couple of days. Here it is Wednesday and it’s still raining. We’re supposed to get a cold front next… why am I talking about the weather? Bleh, the end of January and the entire month of February have no redeeming qualities. At least in March, you get some flowers popping up and the rare day when you pull out your flip-flops again, even if you just put them back in the closet a day later.
So, I got a new cookbook in the mail the other day – Forks Over Knives. I read cookbooks like other people read fiction. Seriously, I read them before bed, in the bed. Is that weird? Anyway, so while I haven’t actually made anything from Forks Over Knives yet, I wanted to share my first impressions of the cookbook.
First impression – I don’t like it.
I was really expecting to love it. While I am not vegan or even vegetarian, I enjoy cooking/eating that way and find that the majority of the meals that I make at home are at least vegetarian, the other night’s shrimp not withstanding. The documentary, if you haven’t seen it, is based on The China Study, which is a study that concluded that a plant-based diet was the way to go, in terms of health. Obviously, I’m paraphrasing, but I enjoyed the movie. The China Study, however, was incredibly boring. This is why I’m not a scientist. (Though my brother actually is. And I don’t understand 3/4ths of the things he says.)
There were three big things that I didn’t like about this cookbook. I was reading some of the Amazon reviews and found that others agreed with me, at least on the first one.
• There is no nutritional information listed. I guess that the thought is that if you eat this way all the time, you don’t really have to pay attention to calories, carbs etc. But I’m not eating this way all the time. And I want to know the basic nutritional information of what I’m eating. I attempted to figure out some of the recipes. I actually thought I was going to overtake some long project and figure out the nutritional information of them all, but it got to be a pain after a while, so I stopped. So, yeah, I know that there are calorie calculators out there and while you can figure it out, I’d rather it just be listed.
• Too many carbs. I could tell this just by looking at what was in some of the recipes. I was disappointed that there weren’t so many just plain vegetable dishes as there were grain dishes. Don’t get me wrong. I like carbs and I like grain dishes, but this cookbook was VERY high carb. A lot of the recipes had grain + bean + starch in them. Also, brown rice syrup and date syrup were in a lot too. For example, lentils and rice and macaroni all in one recipe? I didn’t figure out the nutritional information, but I’m guessing it’s very calorie and carbohydrate dense.
• A lot of the recipes had another recipe as part of the ingredients, which I didn’t like. There is a recipe for “no-cheese sauce” and that recipe is an ingredient for 18 other recipes in the book. While I guess it’s not really a big deal, making a recipe that includes another recipe just seems too time consuming and complicated, at least at first glance. Plus, it makes figuring out the nutritional information even more difficult.
Those were my only beef (pun intended) with the cookbook. It didn’t have many pictures and while that bothers some people, I don’t really care. So, even though it wasn’t cookbook love at first site, I’ll still be actually trying out some of the recipes.
What qualities do you look for in a cookbook?
I purchased this cookbook from Amazon. This is not a sponsored post.