Tenacious Rating: ★★★★★
Back a few years ago, I thought I was a "skinny bitch". Buying everything non-fat, half fat, sugar free, half the calories, I thought I had truly mastered a healthy lifestyle and in some ways I had. I was at a happy weight and I never felt hungry or deprived. But what I didn't know was that this "healthy" lifestyle was actually in many ways detrimental to my overall health. Though I was saving myself a lot of fat, sugar, and calories, I was dumping in many dangerous chemicals, additives, hormones, and artificial ingredients that were doing more harm than help. After doing a little research and some hard hitting advice from Kim and Rory's book Skinny Bitch, my eating and cooking regimen took a drastic turn. While I am certainly no vegetarian or vegan, eating all natural and organic foods has become an absolute in my life. I also recognize the importance of cutting down on animal products and byproducts in my diet. Now with Kim's new cookbook, I can try and incorporate many meat-free and vegan recipes into my weekly meal repertoire.
The cookbook begins with more than just Kim's tough love and quick wit. She tackles everything from sustainability and buying local, to a closer look at harmful food additives and ingredients as well as information on what types of brands to buy. Even if you have absolutely no intention of eating vegan or even vegetarian, this cookbook at the very least offers an extremely vital education in green eating. I especially like her advice on different types of vegan products such as butter, milk, cheese and egg substitutes. Even if it doesn't become an absolute for you, replacing some animal ingredients with vegan ones from time to time is better than not at all and she offers some really great tips as to what to buy. She also provides an extensive list of which produce is dirty versus clean in the pesticide department, deeming them the "dirty dozen" and "clean fifteen". This is helpful when not all organic varieties are offered where you shop and you can decide where its best to save some money and when to splurge for organic for the sake of your health.
She attributes many common health ailments and even some of the more serious ones, such as cancer and Alzheimer's, to the way we eat and what we put in our bodies. Trust me this "bitch" knows her stuff and her knowledge comes from years of research and personal experience. Her advice is not just limited to food but extends into cookware and utensils as well, suggesting different types of essentials in the kitchen and different brands that are good in the green arena as well as durable and high quality options. She goes even further by proposing ways to get the whole family involved in the cooking process and the lifestyle. And that's just the first third of the book!!!
In the recipe department she continues to shine, taking on everything from baking to bar-tending! And although meat substitutes definitely aren't for everyone, many of the soups, salads, desserts, and sides are certainly do-able for those loyal carnivores.
Recipes to try:
- Lavender Shortbread Cookies
- The Pink Fizzy
- Veggie Pot Pies
The Tenacious Winner: Banana and Cinnamon Muffins
*Please visit the Skinny Bitch website for more information regarding Kim's cookbook and other books by Kim Barnouin and Rory Freedman