January 15, 2010

deceptively delicious really is!

delicious, that is. i'm not too sure about the deceptive part.

my oldest two children are not picky eaters and they love fruits and vegetables.

bean, the nearly fourteen year old, is so adventurous he actually tried sushi long before i ever did.

jury is still out on sprout since we're only beginning our foray (did i just make up that word?) journey into solid foods.
so far, so good.

anyhow, i had seen deceptively delicious on bookshelves all over the place, from barnes and noble to target, and the delightful illustrations always caught my eye. the charming retro feel, reminscent of grandma's betty crocker cookbooks, also warmed my heart. but for the longest time i couldn't bring myself to buy a book based on the idea that one must deceive their family in order to feed them better.

when i saw a copy on the bargain shelves at hastings i decided to take the plunge and get over the implied deception. to be honest, i'm pretty bad about serving up as much fresh produce as i should in the wintertime, so the idea of pureeing vegetables ahead of time to add to recipes at a moment's notice was quite appealing. my children could easily witness the steaming or roasting and pureeing of vegetables. they would think it was funny that the butternut squash or cauliflower was in the macaroni and cheese, instead of next to it.

so i bought it and pored over it for a few days, my mouth watering in anticipation of some of the wonderful looking dishes.

my only caveat is that "deceptively delicious" promotes the use of non-stick cooking spray (in nearly every recipe, even when it seems completely pointless) as well as margarine and low-fat dairy products. if it were truly a health-conscious book it might rely less on outdated information and provide insight into the concerns of using unnecessary chemicals and synthetic ingredients as kitchen staples.

i personally have mixed feelings about excessive dairy consumption but choose to use regular (full fat) cheeses and 2% milk, when purchasing cow's milk. we also use real butter and olive or coconut oil (and sometimes canola) in place of vegetable oils. so i'm coming from a totally different, non-mainstream camp and happily report that these recipes can be altered to suit individual preferences.

overall, "deceptively delicious" definitely delivers some inspiration and ideas i may not have otherwise come across. however, i think i'll pass on the avocado-enhanced chocolate cake.