Richmond branch library hosted its inaugural “Cook and Tell” cookbook club on May 15, and there was no shortage of lively discussion amongst the nine participants. “Debbie Macomber’s Table” was the cookbook under review, and there were strong opinions around the table about its merits. Definitely NOT nouvelle cuisine, this recipe book offers traditional comfort food and huge serving sizes.
It was noted by most of the participants that many recipes were loaded with sugar, fat and lots of bacon. Many recipes called for processed food ingredients such as frozen whipped cream, cake and pudding mixes, prepared crescent roll dough and Velveeta! Who knew they still made that stuff? Nutritional information and cooking and prep time information was not provided. There were a few pictures of the recipes, but more pictures of Debbie Macomber and her friends and family, which was not useful or necessary.
There were some winning recipes, including Honey garlic chicken thighs, Gratitude bread, Sheepherder’s skillet and Carrot Ginger Soup. There were also some disasters: Cinnamon streusel coffee coffeecake and spicy pork chops.
It was agreed that comfort food has its place in our kitchens from time to time, but most people would not make a steady diet of it. Would we buy this cookbook, retailing at $39.95 Canadian? Definitely not. “Debbie Macomber’s Table” is more of a “fan club” recipe book and would appeal to readers of her many works of fiction since she often makes reference to characters and places in her books, for example: “I can picture Nichole and Rocco from A Girls guide to Moving On enjoying these tacos on a Friday night date”.
“Cook and Tell” was a great success, and we are looking forward to reviewing “The Ontario Table” by Lynn Ogryzlo on Wednesday July 10 at 6:45 pm. To register: https://biblioottawalibrary.ca/en/event/cook-and-tell-book-club-0