Paperback: 224 pages
Publisher: Atria Books; Original edition (November 17, 2009)
Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 0.6 x 9.2 inches
Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (171 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #46,821 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #10 in Books > Cookbooks, Food & Wine > Regional & International > U.S. Regional > Soul Food #89 in Books > Cookbooks, Food & Wine > Cooking Education & Reference > Essays #1041 in Books > Cookbooks, Food & Wine > Special Diet
I am the first to admit that I bought this book for the novelty factor, I mean, really? A rapping chef? In a word: yes! I do not own a single rap recording in any format, but as someone who values good and simple to prepare food, this cookbook is platinum. The book contains 76 recipes, and some of them are absolute standouts. "Kung Fu Chicken" (p. 51), "Crybaby Chicken" (p. 62), "Karate Meat" (p. 96), "Magical Fruit Soup" (p. 174), and "Bro-Ghetti" (p. 158) top my personal list of favorites.The book is irreverent, is full of colorful and innuendo-laden language (not for kids), and does have a few idiosyncrasies, e.g. "dime bag" stands in for "tablespoon", etc. All of this is explained in chapters one and two. The book isn't big on illustrations, other than a very nice color insert section of completed dishes, and it doesn't go into great detail on techniques, rather gives simple, easy to follow directions. There are inserts from Coolio's assistant, Jarez, in the recipes giving useful and funny information (his advice on p. 75 regarding the advisability of drinking marinade is especially insightful and entertaining).The introductions to the recipes, the recipes themselves, and even the ingredient lists are well seasoned with humor: "Crybaby Chicken" requires among other things three kinds of peppers and a box of tissues, while his vegetarian chili requires a fire extinguisher. Some of his more unusual recipes need a little explanation. As an example, his recipe "Peanut Butter Chicken Love" has this to say by way of introduction: "Chicken and peanut butter may seem like a strange combination, but they go together like gin and juice, biscuits and gravy, O.J.
I know a lot of the people who order this are going to order it for the novelty factor.It is novel, and it's laugh out loud funny to read. Coolio keeps his spices in dime and nickel bags and it's the first cookbook I've read that needs a language warning.But getting past the novelty into the recipes because I love to cook, this book is full of easy to prepare good food. His stated goal is to get people eating healthier and being less dependent on fast food. With that in mind, a lot of the recipes are inexpensive and have minimal prep work. 10 minutes of prep and most of them cook up pretty quickly. So you have food that's faster than getting in your car and driving to a burger place. Most of it is a lot healthier too. Use your judgment, if it calls for a cup of mayonnaise, it might be unhealthy. The recipes use a lot of canned foods and sauces to make it quick and easy. There are some very healthy options as well that look absolutely delicious. I'm looking forward to trying the chili for my family.There are some very tasty vegetarian meals and options.The shrimp recipes look amazing. I've used the fork steak recipe after seeing it on his cooking show and it was a huge hit with my family. He states anyone can make a good expensive steak, it takes true kitchen skill to make a good steak with a cheap cut of meat. I appreciate that philosophy. Learning the basics of cooking can make budget cooking way better than what your friends do after seeing a gourmet show and trying with the costly things.About cooking basics- he doesn't go into great depth but he does explain the terms and methods very well including not assuming his readers know how to boil an egg.
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