Beginner Cookbook

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Disclosure:  I received a copy of this cookbook and a spare, to giveaway on my blog, from the publishers.  However, I never agree to give anything but an honest review to my readers.  If I don’t like it, or if there are flaws, I tell you about them!

You can click on the photo on the side to go to Amazon to view pages inside the book.

I have been living with this cookbook for a good long while now.  I wanted to make sure the recipes were sound and that they were something my readers would be interested in trying to recreate in their own homes.  As a member of the Slow Food Revolution, I think food you create in your own home is on the top of the priority list, and the recipes you use factors into this importance.  If the recipe is bad, or impossible to follow, the recipe is no good – you will give up in frustration, hop in your car, and head to the nearest fast food place (or call in for delivery).  My goal is to give you good information and help you make a habit of cooking at home – and show to you it isn’t difficult to learn.

My long awaited cookbook conclusion?  I think ya’ll will love this book.  Plus, this is now on my list of gifts to give to friends and family.

Now, I have been cooking since I was teenager (no, I’m not telling you how long that has been, but it’s been a LONG TIME), so cooking and recipes are not something I need basic instructions for when it comes to most dishes.  However, there are things I do not make often enough to be really good at cooking or baking and this is when I need a little more than a lick and a promise when it comes to a recipe.

If you are new to cooking, or even if you have been cooking for years, I think you will like this book.  The recipes are easy to follow and they often include tips which will not talk down to your cooking intellect yet still helping the beginner.  My favorite recipe from desserts is a good example: Shortbread Cookies on page 403.  My mom loves these types of cookies, so I made her a whole tin from this recipe.  I had never made shortbread cookies before, even though I am no cookie n00b.  The tips were helpful and the recipe was delicious!  (Sorry, mom, but you didn’t get the whole batch – you can’t eat just one!)

Now, just to warn you, this is not The Joy of Cooking.  It will not go into every little detail and teach you new and amazing skills.  You will not learn how to butterfly a chicken breast, but you will learn how to roast a whole chicken, or even a leg of lamb…and the whole book probably calls for the same amounts of butter as The Joy of Cooking (Win!).  The chapters are broken down by food types, so you have breakfast items all in one spot and don’t need to hunt through the whole book for what you are looking for, and there is even a grilling and pasta chapter and a rice chapter.  It is not all beginner type food either – there is a Roasted Rack of Lamb with Garlic-Rosemary Sauce recipe on page 214, Herbed Chestnut Stuffing on page 180 and Chicken Etouffee on page 156; along with good beginners recipes like Scrambled Eggs on page 15, Chicken Noodle Soup on page 112 and Sweet Potato Casserole with Marshmallows on page 312.  There is something for everyone, at every stage of their cooking life, in this cookbook.

But, enough about the book, you want the contest details!

This contest ends Friday, September 10th. To qualify, comment below and tell me what your favorite recipe, breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack or dessert, is to prepare.  Additional entries for those who follow me on Twitter, if you have me on RSS feed and/or subscribe to the blog and if you tweet about the giveaway:

I registered for @MelindaHamby’s cookbook giveaway, see details at

Leave a comment below for each entry and GOOD LUCK!

Winner will be drawn via and will be announced on Saturday, September 11th on this blog and via Twitter.  Winner will be contact via email (make sure it is correct when you leave a comment!).  If I do not hear from the person by Saturday, September 18th, a new winner will be chosen.  If your email is incorrect, I will leave a message on the blog and on Twitter for you to contact me.  If I have not heard from you by Saturday, September 18th, a new winner will be chosen.

This book is completely free to the winner.  I will never ask for shipping and handling for any item.

Congratulations to Susan Billie Taylor for being my first giveaway winner!!!