29 March 2016

Good + Simple

In this hefty (350 page) book, these two sisters have developed over 140 recipes which they say make use of ingredients that are readily available and which are ‘delicious, nourishing home-cooked foods made with love.’ Their focus is on healthy food. One breakfast dish which caught my eye was butternut and almond butter porridge, made with squash, which can be served with fruit such as blueberries -- certainly different and ideal for anyone wishing to eliminate grain from their diet!

Advocating ‘mindful eating’, the Hemsleys outline 15 principles for eating well which includes ‘forget calories, think nutrients,’ ‘fat is your friend’ and ‘prepare, chew and combine.’ The book’s first pages really establish the theory behind the recipes.

In the contents pages are listed the various types of meals, including soups and stews, and sides and snacks which too often seem left out in cooking books.

There are also notes for readers on how to plan ahead, stocking the kitchen and eating on the go, while there are two weekly menu plans (complete with shopping lists). Checking over the meals offered, one can see the following for a one-day meal plan: breakfast – leftover cinnamon, raisin and quinoa muffins; lunch – leftover flaxseed bun with leftover squash and ginger soup, and dinner – slow-cooked no-fry chicken curry with cauliflower rice. Certainly nutritious and healthy foods!

The book is beautifully designed with frequent, brightly coloured photographs that make all of the dishes sing with appeal. As I flicked through the pages, I came to a double-page spread introduction to vegetable mains. The dishes all sound delicious – beetroot feta cake, green goddess noodle salad, easy cheesy broccoli risotto, simple and spiced mung bean salad to name a few of the 15 dishes.

Good + Simple has inspired me to work from it when guests come next weekend. The proof, as they say, will be in the pudding (and the entrée and mains)!

Reviewed by Dianne Bates

Title: Good and Simple
Author: Jasmine Hemsley and Melissa Hemsley
Publisher:  Random House Australia (Ebury Press)
Publication Date: 1 March 2016
Cost: $55.00 RRP
Format: Hardback
Type: Non-fiction

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