I have plenty of cookbooks.
I don’t have too many, I’m not one of those cats that has cookbooks all over the place, but I have enough.
I’m probably in the high teens and have something from my favorite chefs and regions and food styles and I am saying all that to say that I have enough. I don’t need to add more. I didn’t need to add more.
I didn’t need to buy Chrissy Teigens cookbook Cravings, but I just happen to like shorty. After thumbing through this book, I’m glad I bought it, and actually, I couldn’t recommend it more. I’m going to tell you why (and then show you) below.
The root of it, is very simple: Chrissy Teigen is not a chef, she is a model. She was wildly successful at it. She has since turned her talent of being beautiful (and I truly believe that beauty is a talent) and her awesome spirit, into a budding media empire. With an appetite for life, a great personality, and an incredible social media presence she has put out what I would consider an almost perfect cookbook.
I’m going to go on a little rant here because I saw a ridiculous article in the NY Times killing this book and calling Chrissy “a liar”.
Because she isn’t trying to be a chef. And she isn’t trying to come off as a chef. She tells you this much in the subtitle of the book, CRAVINGS: Recipes for all the food you want to eat.
What this book is, is the book that regular folks who like to cook food and play chef at home, would make. But we aren’t Chrissy Teigen. And we don’t have access to the things that she does and couldn’t pull something like this off. But she can, and she did.
But she didnt take it lightly and this isn’t a bullshxt book.
I said it in an instagram post early this week when the book showed up: The people will love this. It’s got some great recipes, but they are verrrrrrry approachable. Prime example, I thumbed through and saw a recipe that called for 10 cheese slices. Another recipe called for Sriracha. It’s a “real food” cookbook and most of the recipes aren’t calling for some top shelf random brand spice that you will only use one time. But it’s not basic ass food.
And that is the key. I can make everything in this book, from cover to cover, and I just might do that.
I love a very detailed book from a great chef like Tom Colicchio as much as the next person (I have three of his cookbooks) but chefs tend to make cookbooks that are very intimidating. And I’m someone who LOVES to cook. I’ve made plenty of stuff in Colicchios book, and I’ve made plenty of stuff from Pickles, Pigs & Whiskey, and I’ve made plenty of food from The Conscious Cook, but sometimes those recipes are exhausting.
A LOT of the time they call for an ingredients that I can only get at Whole Paycheck or it takes 4 hours to prepare.
I’m neither hating on chefs cookbooks AT ALL or talking crazy about Cravings because I love it, but I’m just saying that this book is a great book that shouldn’t be compared to chefs cookbooks – because she’s not a chef.
There are great pictures, the book is laid out perfectly and its very easy to navigate. Is there a gastronomical narrative throughout the book? Not really, its just seems to be recipes that she does well and they are in a book. Its smart actually. Its a very on-trend type of book.
It feels like if someone curated a very nice Pinterest board called something like, “The Food I Want to Eat” … and then made a book of it. See what I did there?
This is a great idea and this one of my favorite parts of the book. Hearing this statement from a chef, doesn’t resonate like it would coming from a somewhat regular person. If Colicchio told me that these things shouldn’t intimidate me is like Steph Curry telling me that shooting from 38 feet is easy. “Yeah bro! It’s easy for you….” but coming from a regular person, its more reasonable.
Here are the first five things I am making from the book – and I will be making everything in here – and I will do an individual post for each and every one. But here are the recipes that stuck out like a sore thumb for me. This mac and chee though…. good lord.
I have a lot of friends that ask me about cooking and I try to explain them that it’s not difficult, you just have to do it. I’d thought about writing a cookbook for friends, but now it feels like I don’t have to. I can just suggest that they buy this. Its like an entry level cookbook for you too cook really good tasting stuff, really good looking stuff, and there isn’t a thing in here that you can’t make with stuff from a local grocery.
Some of the things that I didn’t mention, that I really love from the book is how much of who she is or who we think she is from what we get to see in interviews and in social media, is embedded in this book.
It literally feels like she is there with you as you read it. Its great.
What has made her an absolute tour de force on social media come through tenfold in the book. Its her. And, something that you see all over her social is how much involved in her life her husband is, and her mother is, and her father is. She brings them into the book as well.
Its super cool . John gets several pages and some recipes. She brings her father in for a point in the book. And, she gives an entire section to her mom. About 5 or 6 recipes and some pages to tell the story.
The only thing this book is missing, to me, is something to satisfy a sweet tooth. I know that she does not consider herself a baker by any stretch of the imagination and I think we all remember CAKEGATE from early in 2014, but I wouldn’t have been mad at a few sweets and maybe a couple of cocktails mixed in. But hey, its not my book.
Again, I can’t recommend this book enough. Go buy it. It’s already a bestseller so they will be printing more of these.
It’ll be cool to add this one to your collection. Thanks Chris!