Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The perfect cookbook for Fat Tuesday

No, it's not a cookbooks full of paczki and pancakes. I'm talking about Fat Girl Food, a cookbook with the tagline "Twice the Calories, Triple the Taste."

Why is this appropriate for Fat Tuesday? Well, besides the name, if you're giving up any sort of food item for lent, it's bound to be here. This cookbook is full of unapologetic comfort food.

And it's funny. I like to read cookbooks like they're novels, and I've got to tell you that some of the comments here had me laughing out loud.

Jena Hutchison, the author of this book and the blogger behind Fat Girl Kitchen, obviously loves food. She makes no excuses for her use of butter, cake mix, or other convenience products, when it suits her mood. On the other hand, she makes her own bread and pizza dough.

In other words, she cooks like most people - using what makes sense at the time. And she does it all with a healthy dose of humor. Like this introduction to a taco salad recipe:

"The ultimate in bachelor food, this salad probably tops out a couple thousand calories. Rich chili and handfuls of smooth cheddar cheese effectively bury any and all lettuce flavor for the discriminating palate. And just in case it didn't, a hefty smash of Doritos and creamy ranch dressing annihilates any remaining "veggie-ish" underpinnings. Is it healthy? Of course it is - it's a salad!"

Even some of the recipe titles are a hoot, like Swedish-ish Meatballs or the Easy-Peasy-Cheesy Sauce which in fact sounds easy and also pretty good. "I have yet to use it on ice cream," Jena says, "But I figure my first pregnancy might take care of that."

Recipes all have callouts - some of them useful and some of them funny. It makes browsing through the book a lot more interesting, that's for sure.

As far as recipes, I haven't tried any yet, but they seem like they ought to work just fine. Although some rely on packaged products, that's easy enough to get around, if you want to. Many of the recipes also have variations you can make, and many also have uses for the leftovers, which is very interesting. And it's not just about reheating stuff or making sandwiches. Enchilada soup, anyone?

This is a fun cookbook, with a lot of personality. And there are a few recipes I'm pretty sure I'm going to try, as soon as I quit laughing.

And now for a giveaway! CONTEST IS CLOSED. 
...And the winner is ... Sheri!

Are you interested? Because I've got a copy to give away.

  • To enter, leave a comment here telling me what your favorite comfort food is.
  • For a bonus entry, tweet a link to this contest. Come back here and tell me you tweeted.

And that's it. Two possible ways to enter, one fun cookbook to win. Contest begins when the post goes up and ends on Sunday, February 26 at midnight. Standard contest rules apply. Good luck!