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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

1200-Calorie-a-Day Menu Cookbook


I always enjoy discovering a new cookbook. I like trying out the recipes and identifying the ones that are particular hits for my family. This Christmas my daughter gave me The 1200-Calorie-a-Day Menu Cookbook by Nancy S. Hughes. We have been trying out recipes since then.

What initially drew me to the book was that it offered menus, not just recipes. That means any given recipe also offers a way to round it out with other recipes to make a meal. It categorizes the recipes and menus according to calorie count and which type of meal during the day it was designed for--like breakfast, lunch or dinner.

I have found a few recipes I like. Unfortunately, I find most of the recipes unimaginative and more like retro 50s food. For instance I tried out the Pineapple-Mandarin Gelatin Salad on page 100. It was not a hit with the other members of the family. It will not be a repeat. Many items are repeated throughout in many menus...not very creative and not very helpful if you end up not liking that particular item on the menu.

There is a great and easy-to-make corn muffin (page 109/104 calories) in the cookbook and also a Creamy Dijon Salad with Artichokes (page 129/65 calories) that my family likes which is handy in rounding out a menu.

Overall I would say there are some good recipes in this cookbook that I will use regularly but the menus are awkward. It would not be the first cookbook I would recommend to someone looking for a cookbook with menus and meals in addition to individual recipes.