Seriously Delish: A Cookbook Review

Hi there.

Do you like to eat whole foods? How about whole grain? Kale? Vegan and clean? Well, friends – this post isn’t for you.

banana bread, brie and chocolate grilled cheese, via howsweeteats.com

Yeah… this isn’t your average cookbook.

I’ve been a fan of How Sweet It Is for a while now, and I first raved about it about a year ago. Yes, blogger Jessica Marchand has had her thing going for far longer than that, and recently, she’s just come out with her first cookbook, Seriously Delish.

One of the things that I love about Jessica’s recipes, and why I keep her on my blog roll, is that she’s incredibly creative. (Hello – banana bread, brie and chocolate grilled cheese?!) Sure, she’ll have her take on the old standbys, and yes, you’ll see lots of tacos (she’s got a thing for tacos), but they’re not your average taco. What about Brussels sprouts tacos with caramelized shallot salsa? Or, in contention for the longest name of a recipe ever: beer battered fish tacos with margarita mango salsa and jalapeño crema.

One of the first things I made from her website was a cake. I bake a birthday cake for my friend’s birthday every year, and one year, I decided to make her something that caught my eye on Jessica’s blog: a gin and tonic cake. This cake certainly didn’t come together quickly. Lots of steps that required “wait for it to cool before…” and like, WHO can wait for a cake to cool? a) I’m too impatient and b) I am usually making it at the last minute. But let me tell you, this cake was a total hit at the party.

So, when buying the cookbook, I knew to expect heavy, creative dishes that were developed to share with friends. I wasn’t disappointed. Then, I’ve finished my initial page-through and I get to the end and there’s literally a chapter on heavy dishes that are meant for special occasions! I thought the rest of the cookbook was bad… talk about a “treat yo self” moment.

On my “to make” list  currently is:
– Mini parmesan-herb biscuit puffs
– Mushroom, leek and brussels pizza with fried eggs
– Green chili, turkey and white bean enchiladas
– Pistachio cream cake with chocolate ganache

… just to name a few.

Over the holidays, I made her prosecco-cider spiced punch which was a HUGE hit. Here’s the recipe:

1 bottle prosecco (as long as you don’t use Baby Duck you’ll be fine)
2 cups apple cider
2 oranges, sliced
4 cinnamon sticks
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg (my addition)
Apple slices for serving

Jess’ instructions were: “Add all of the ingredients to a large bowl or pitcher and stir. Refrigerate the punch until it’s cold, at least 30 minutes.”

When I went to my friend’s place I left the cookbook at home and just brought the ingredients. For the life of me I couldn’t remember if this punch was supposed to be served hot or cold. Prosecco = cold, but cider? Cider in the winter needs to be hot. So, I went with a hot punch that sat in the slow cooker throughout the evening. It was delicious.  I feel like the flavours really had a chance to combine and the cinnamon sticks to do their thing in a slowcooker like they wouldn’t have just sitting in the fridge. Regardless, this was tasty!

Now if healthy recipes are more your thing, be sure to check out my review of the amazing Oh She Glows cookbook. But before this post ends, I’m just going to leave this here… sweet and spicy homemade snack mix with bacon fat popcorn.

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