Thursday, August 16, 2012

"Food Family Style" Blog Tour

Food Family Style

Time may be short and budgets may be tight, but these 365 mouthwatering recipes are sure to draw families into the kitchen and around the table day after day.

Crowned Queso Queen, Leigh Oliver Vickery shares her passion for including the whole family in cooking and eating dinner around the kitchen table. From tasty breakfasts, soups and salads to sumptuous main dishes and desserts, Food Family Style delivers just what
readers' families ordered.

Throughout Food Family Style are symbols indicating recipes that double easily, freeze well, are gluten-free or vegetarian, can be made in a slow cooker, and more. And since there's more to mealtime than just the food, this innovative book also includes tips about how to involve kids in meal preparation, meaningful conversation starters and simple ideas to bring warmth to your home.

Available August  2012 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group

About the Author:  Leigh Oliver Vickery is creator and founder of Leigh Oliver's, a specialty "fun food" company with numerous products on the market in at least twenty-five states and grocery chains, including Whole Foods Market and Costco. She is the former food editor of the Tyler Morning Telegraph in Tyler, Texas, and now blogs at Leigh also has a regular twice-weekly segment on two local TV stations called "One Big Happy Table with Leigh Vickery." She lives in Tyler, Texas, with her husband, two sons, and three dogs.

My Take:  You know a cookbook has the potential to be good for our family when I go through the entire thing and when I am finished, there are 30-40 pages flagged with recipes that I want to try!

This cookbook has those flags!

What bothers me about most cookbooks is that the recipes are just too fancy for a family like mine or they take a lot of preparation and expensive ingredients to make. We are really just simple people who like simple food without a lot of fuss, and usually, cookbooks are not geared towards those types of families.

In Food Family Style, I knew right away that I would be able to find some 'keeper' recipes. The recipes are simple but still filling and good enough to serve for guests. I really liked the "Kids in the Kitchen" section that had recipes that are good for getting kids involved in cooking the meals. I also liked that many of the main dish recipes had suggested sides from this cookbook that you could make along with it.

While I liked the recipes in this book, I was indifferent to the personal stories and other things. They were fine - I don't think I had ever read a cookbook that mentioned faith and God other than a church cookbook! I don't think they detracted from the overall book, but I'm not sure they added much, either.

My family tried the Mexican Lasagna recipe from Food Family Style. Even though it was a bit salty for our taste, we liked it, but I forgot to take a picture of it before we all dug in! The publisher is allowing us to share one recipe from the book, so I will share this one.

Mexican Lasagna

1 lb. ground beef or turkey
1 pkg. taco seasoning
1 cup water
12 (6-in.) corn tortillas
1 cup salsa
1 (8 oz.) can tomato sauce
1 (15 oz.) can kernel corn, drained
1 (4 oz.) can sliced black olives, drained
1 (4 oz.) can diced mild green chiles, drained
2 cups Monterey Jack cheese, shredded

Preheat oven to 375F. Brown meat; add taco seasoning and water. Cook until thickened. Spray a 9 x 13 pan with nonstick cooking spray. Place 6 tortillas in pan, overlapping as needed to fit. Mix salsa and tomato sauce; set aside. Top tortillas with half the meat, corn, olives, and chiles. Pour half of salsa mixture over this, and sprinkle with 1 cup cheese. Repeat layers, finishing with cheese. Bake 30 minutes. Serves 6-8

I prepared this as directed except I left out the olives and chiles (not a fan) and added rinsed, drained black beans instead. As I said, we liked this except for the saltiness. I might add 'no salt added' tomato sauce the next time. We really liked the corn tortillas in this - it was a good variation.

I am also really looking forward to trying the Chocolate Chip Muffins in this book - and loads of other desserts! :)

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Revell/Baker Publishing Group. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this is accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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