This book has been out for a little while but I only just got a copy. I had taken it out of the local library a wee while back and put it on my "to get list" (do other folks have these?) as it looked like a book I would enjoy using. And it is.
There are a good selection of photos for those who like that sort of thing, the paper is high quality and shiny, with a recipe to a page. The recipes are easy to follow, clearly written with nice, not too long or chatty, introductions. Each chapter (which are logically organised) is full of lots of options, though the Main Courses chapter does use a lot of seitan. I think this is due to the subject matter and this being the best way to capture the true diner experience of the meal. The introduction and front sections (which I do like to see in a cookbook) are well written, informative, though not long.
All the recipes I tried were tasty, filling (pretty large portion sizes I thought), and on theme. Julie Hasson is an experienced cookbook author and knows how to put food together. I do recommend this book as a resource for comfort food recipes. The recipes I tried in page number order -
Page 31 Diner Granola
This didn;t form clumps of granola which I was hoping it would, as I do love the clumps, though was great with almond milk and dry as a snack.
Page 45 Breakfast Potatoes with Peppers and Onions
A little heavy on the pepper and onion, and light on the potato for my taste, but that one is an easy adjustment. Easy to make and a good side for dinner too.
Page 68 Old-Fashioned Tomato Soup
I really liked the smooth richness of this one, though H found the basil a little too pronounced for his taste.
Page 70 Quick and Hearty Chili
Lovely on its own, and great over nachos. Very simple to make and doesn;t get upset if you accidentally cook it for a lot longer than stated (my bad).
Page 82 Crispy Chickpea Onion Rings
Even though I neglected to use sparkling water (ooops) this still turned out well, and was happily eaten, though the batter wasn't as light and crisp as it would have been had I followed the recipe correctly!
Page 86 Sweetheart Fries
I can never get oven baked sweet potato fries crisp. These made up for that by being ever so tasty. They were sweet. but not in a bad way.
Page 88 Garlic Roasted Brussels Sprouts
I don't usually leave my sprouts whole to roast so this was a nice change. Very garlic-y so be warned.
Page 100 Quinoa Burgers
Held together well. My quinoa hater liked them!
Page 120 Home Style Loaf
I liked this better cold the next day, but I often do with loaves like this.
Page 129 Lotsa Chocolate Pudding
Rich, creamy, heavy and heavenly. I will make this again for sure.
Page 134 Old Fashioned Rice Pudding
Not too sweet so makes a fine dish for breakfast. I do prefer my rice pudding hot but this was nice and creamy so I enjoyed it fine cold.
Page 152 Very Vanilla Ice Cream
The experts (M&R + friends) agreed this was a very good vanilla icecream and I can make again any time.
Page 163 Creamy Ranch Dressing
Photo on salad in Quinoa Burger Pic. Fast and simple, tasted good.
Page 164 Creamy Tomato Dressing
Nice. Had over salad.
Page 166 Very Secret Sauce
Nice with the Burgers.
Page 168 Great Smoky Mountain Cheeze
Just like the smoked flavor of those little spreadable cheese triangles I had as a kid. Wonderful on crackers, as a dip for veggies, in a sandwich..... and very simple to make. Don't be scared off by the agar.
Page 176 Rich Brown Gravy
Not so brown but very rich and tasty. I enjoyed with the Loaf but H didn;t think it went too well because of the ketchup on top of the loaf(?).