Thank you for the amazing 8 years here at A Baked Creation, we can't thank you enough for the memories! But we've decided to move over to a new site - Sincerely, Syl. Please join us there for future posts on all the things you loved here!


Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Good Food, Good Life

130 Simple Recipes You'll Love to Make and Eat
Written by Curtis Stone
Photographs by Ray Kachatorian
ISBN 13: 9780449015896
ISBN 10: 0449015890
Hardcover: 304 pages

Sooooo, there's a new Curtis Stone cookbook! I always get excited when I see that there's a new book coming out from him. Usually I find out at sales conference from work and then have to wait an entire year. He once came in to meet with the marketing and publicity department at work and I tried to nonchalantly walk by the boardroom to see if I could spot him or even better - meet him! But no luck, maybe this year!
I'm noticing this trend among a lot of the cookbooks this year, no jacket! And matte interior paper and matte covers with spine wraps. Neutral colours.

Is everyone tired of the glossy and shiny look? I understand that jackets are cumbersome in the kitchen, but they do help protect the book when you accidentally place the book on a wet counter top. Just be extra careful now, you don't want to drop or spill anything by accident to blur out the recipes. But I don't mind this new direction, I'm digging the look. Most cookbooks today are trying to capture a lifestyle compared to the bright and showy cooking shows on television.
Good Food, Good Life is about family and home cooked meals that are humble but tasty. The dedication is made out to Curtis's son, Hudson and the introduction mentions Emerson, the latest addition to his family. You can even make the wedding cupcakes that he made when he married Lindsay Price in the book too. Yes, you can win a girl's heart with food! You can also see that his focus and stories are on raising a family with good food.
Here's a glance at how the cookbook is divided. I mostly tagged recipes for dinner and breakfast. As you can see, I've tagged a lot of them to try. For me, they are mostly weekend recipes because it still takes me awhile to assemble everything, so it's not going to work on a busy weekday for me. I also found that a lot of the recipes I did want to try required firing up a grill, so I had to skip tagging them. A skillet on the stove top might work, but I don't like smoking up my apartment (my exhaust fan in the microwave sucks) and I don't think we're allowed to grill on the balcony. Which is a shame, but maybe I'll take these grill recipes over to my parent's house or borrow a friend's backyard.
Each recipe clearly labels the serving, prep time, cook time, and make-ahead suggestions. I don't know about you, but the prep times are never accurate for me! I'm so slow at getting everything in place before I cook. But I appreciate them just the same, it gives me an estimate (I double it) and I like knowing the cook times so I know when to get up from the couch (stop binge-watching) to make dinner.
If you're someone who fears a long ingredient list like me, I would say that the average would be ten in this cookbook. There are the simpler recipes that use five or less ingredients and then the ambitious projects that list fifteen and over. It really depends on your mood and time.
I wanted to let you a look at a few interior spreads. Most of the recipes include a photograph of the finished products. Others show the ingredients or a picture of Curtis and Hudson prepping and cooking in the kitchen.
The layout is clean and easy to read and the instructions are clear to follow. The photographs look so laid back (even though they're styled) and simple, making the food stand out and really showing you that you can do it, you too can make this dish look good at home. (Why don't my food photos ever look like that?)
Here's Lindsay's Lemonade! I made Lindsay's Guacamole from What's for Dinner? and it's delicious, so I'm expecting the same for this drink.
I have to admit that I prefer What's for Dinner? over Good Food, Good Life a tiny bit, but please keep in mind that the concepts are different between those two cookbooks. I'll be sharing my cooking experience with a few recipes following this post, so return to see how the food turn outs!

And if you ever need a helping hand (sous chef) in the kitchen, you can now get your very own Pocket Curtis! Happy cooking!