Monday, August 17, 2020

The DIRTY, LAZY, KETO Dirt Cheap Cookbook

The DIRTY, LAZY, KETO Dirt Cheap Cookbook is a new tutorial and recipe collection for frugal keto cooks. Due out 15th Sept 2020 from Simon & Schuster on their Adams Media imprint, it's 224 pages and will be available in paperback and ebook formats.

The introduction covers the basics of the keto lifestyle/diet, including a basic primer on ketosis, macronutrients, tips, ingredients, tools, supplies, how-to, pantry lists and shopping tips, along with an inspiring author background bio. She emphasizes that it's not necessary to spend a ton of money and track every mouthful to be successful at weight loss and maintenance. I found her encouraging and you-can-do-it style of writing engaging and fun. There's also a short, concise subchapter on food handling and safety, which was welcome.

The following chapters include the recipes arranged roughly by category: breakfast, soups & salads, snacks, pizza, side dishes, main dishes, and desserts & drinks. The table of contents lists each recipe along with symbols giving a visual guide to different real-life situations (recipes for "hangry" moments, for picky eaters, lacto-ovo vegetarian-ish dishes, superstar keto dishes etc - quite humorous but also *true*).

Ingredient measurements are supplied in American standard measurements only.  There's a conversion chart for metric measures in the appendices. The prep costs, net carbs, servings, prep-time and tips and options are listed in well laid out sidebars. The ingredients are listed in a bullet list followed by step by step directions. The author does recommend real-world timesavers like using premade taco powder (she gleefully informs us that she'll make her own as soon as she's done making butter from her grass fed pet cow). Allied recipes (included) are referenced in the recipes to save time by using leftovers from one recipe in another recipe. The recipes are drawn from a surprisingly broad number of world cuisines - Asian, southwestern, Tex-Mex, Cajun, European, etc.

Inspiring real life quotes and thoughts are highlighted in yellow in the text, giving readers an extra little boost. Some readers might find the cheerleading over the top, but I found the author's voice very encouraging and friendly. I found myself thinking "wow, she really gets it".

This really felt like a keto-friendly cookbook for me: short on time/money, impatient with impossible-to-source "weird" ingredients, and cooking for myself and a family of non-keto eaters. I found it impressive and pretty easy to follow. A small real-life occurrence - my endocrinologist said at my last visit I was his ONLY patient who had actually gone DOWN in weight since lockdown. That made me feel good.

Five stars. I really liked this one. One codicil, there are very few pictures included in the book. The dishes and serving suggestions which are included are attractive and appropriate, however.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes 

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