The Cook Life part of this website serves as a platform for sharing my love of cooking and cookbooks. The Cook Life will mostly consist of posts related to my 2021 goal of cooking every recipe in the Half Baked Harvest Cookbook.
Why Cook Through the Book?
I have a confession to make. I am a cookbook hoarder. It brings me immense joy to buy cookbooks and spend endless hours flipping through them and planning future meals. The only problem is that those future meals rarely end up happening. I tend to go back to the old tried and true/quick meal plans or ordering take-out. (Photo of some of my cookbooks follows)
Sometimes I am also intimidated by the recipes in my books, which seem like they are going to take a super long time, have multiple steps or involve touching raw meat, which kind of freaks me out. I want to step out of my comfort zone and try some new things!
A few months ago I stumbled across an awesome Instagram profile where Babe with a Book and Beer was cooking through Cravings (the cookbook by Chrissy Teigen). I was so inspired! When I finally decided to start my own website I knew immediately that I wanted to try something similar and exactly which book to try and cook through.
I received a gift card to a local bookstore at Christmas and purchased the Half Baked Harvest Cookbook. I have wanted this book for a while but was hesitant to purchase given my tendency to not actually try the recipes from my cookbooks!
Half Baked Harvest Cookbook
The Half Baked Harvest Cookbook is a beautiful book from the blog of the same name. I have tried a few recipes from the blog with great results. There also seems to be a good variety of difficulty levels in the book. Meaning, the recipes range from fairly simple looking to more complicated.
Most Excited / Least Excited
I am most excited to try the Harvest Cheeseboard. What can I say? I am kind of lazy and I love cheese. Cheeseboards are the grown-up version of Lunchables and I will never turn one down. I am also most excited about all the pasta! Pasta is my go to meal because it is quick, usually pretty cheap, very delicious and makes great leftovers.
I am least excited about Let’s Salsa (four different salsa recipes). My knife skills are poor and I like salsa but don’t love it.
I am most intimidated by the recipes for Garlic and Herb Marscapone Roasted Chicken and Beer Can Chicken. I have never in my life roasted a whole animal. It seems difficult? Plus it involves raw chicken, which generally intimidates me.
I am also intimidated by any fish recipe. I almost considered excluding the fish recipes as well, but felt it would be a bit of a cop-out. I don’t mind fish now but hated it from the time I was a child until roughly five years ago. Now I don’t hate it but I also don’t love it. Except for opening a tuna can, I haven’t attempted to make any fish recipes.
My goal is to cook every recipe in the Half Baked Harvest Cookbook except for the ones I know I won’t eat. There is no point in cooking something that won’t get eaten! For me, that is any recipe that stars shellfish. I can’t stand shellfish and after many attempts at liking it I just give up! I dare you to change my mind!
I also will not re-print recipes, because if you are interested in cooking from this book, you should go borrow it from the library or purchase it from your local bookstore!
I will give you an honest review of the recipe and what it was like to cook from it. I will try to indicate how long it took to cook, difficulty level and anything else I feel would be of interest! I am a solidly average to below-average cook so this should be interesting!
What am I Missing?
What am I missing in my review ideas? Let me know in the comments or send me an email! I would love to know what you would like to read about!