I love books – and I’ll confess, cookbooks are a particular obsession of mine. It’s one indulgence I have that my husband never seems to have a problem with! In fact, next to bicycling – food is a shared passion in our marriage and the kitchen is a hub of activity in our home.
I think that one way to become a cook – or become a better cook! – is to read cookbooks. I get so inspired and excited when I come across something new – a blending of tastes I hadn’t tried, a shortcut in preparation, a simple little flair to add to the presentation of a dish….it’s all available for you to adapt and modify. I spend a few minutes everytime I’m shopping at my natural foods store to peruse the book shelf, flipping through colorful pictures and getting a quick feel of what the author is offering. Often I find that cookbooks can be a lot like buying a CD – one or two good songs, or recipes, and the rest I can do without. Especially in the arena of “allergy-free” cooking – the recipes frequently disappoint in flavor and ingredients.
Recently, I came across a book on the shelf that I got pretty excited about – it’s called “Clean Start” by Terry Walters, the author of “Clean Food.” This new book has 100 recipes that really will inspire you to “eat clean and live well.” The book itself is lovely to look at, gorgeous photos and a unique cover design – the recipes are a single one per page (I love that) – and each one is simple, delicious and completely do-able for the reluctant chef. She encourages farm-fresh, local and seasonal – and offers easy, uncomplicated advice on how to get started with a “clean” pantry and a “clean kitchen.” The best part of all – each recipe is dairy, egg and gluten free! Heaven!
Check it out – I bought my copy at New Seasons Market. You can always take a few minutes out of your shopping time to peruse their bookshelf and get some great ideas.