Kirkus Review – Eat Real Food or Else

Science and food writing combine in this cookbook, which offers a new way to look at the American diet.

Eating healthfully can be hard in this day and age, particularly with so many opinions and so much advice about the subject out there. This work is armed with the mindset that “real food”—that is, food that’s natural and not overly processed—is key to a healthy diet, and it explores what and how much to eat and when to eat it. The book’s rules are simple: readers should seek out food that’s colorful, micronutrient-rich, whole, and comes from healthful sources. After examining the “ideal” plate of food, the work explains common diet buzzwords, such as “glycemic index,” and the roles that fats, carbohydrates, and sugar play in American diets. Then there’s a recipe section, divided into categories such as “Soup, Salads & Appetizers,” “Vegetables,” “Main Courses,” and “Breakfast, Snacks & Condiments.” Also included are breakout sections on everything from cruciferous vegetables and their benefits to what cooking oils to avoid. Nguyen (Cuisine de Montagne Pas à Pas, 2012, etc.), a culinary writer; Nichols (Quantitative Medicine, 2016), a doctor; and debut author Vollmar, a chef, are all trained professionals in their respective fields, and as a result, they leave no stone unturned in this book. One should always consult with one’s physician before starting a new diet, but the authors lay out the diet in this work in an easy-to-understand manner. It’s not necessary to read the science to understand the recipes, but they do combine to provide a holistic approach to healthy eating. Recipes such as “Spring Ratatouille,” “Duck Cassoulet,” “Parmesan Crackers,” and “Asparagus and Collard Greens Slaw” boast full-color pictures of the step-by-step process as well as of the finished result. The simple instructions make the work manageable for novice chefs. For readers looking to eat better or just whip up something delicious, this cookbook may be just the (meal) ticket.

An easy-to-follow guide to a healthier lifestyle featuring delicious recipes.