My initial thoughts when hearing about this book was, “Here comes someone else ready to cash in on the gluten-free fad.” I knew a bit about the author, but not being a survivor fan or that much of an NFL fan (she was a contestant on Survivor: Outback and her husband is a well-known NFL athlete I didn’t know much about her beyond the vague awareness that she was celiac.
I tend to look for new sections in gluten-free living books. I want to see not only the basic facts about gluten intolerance, but also a reason that the author felt the need to write a new book. This book does hit all the basic facts well, and I could tell that thought had gone into making sure that it was fairly complete. On the other hand, there wasn’t anything mind-blowing in it.
One pleasant surprise was the inclusion of information about gluten-free flour mixing. Finally, after years of suffering from crumbly, heavy, and flat baking we have up to date cookbooks dealing with gluten intolerance. This book contains 100 gluten-free recipes and many of them are great. There are larger gluten-free cookbooks out there, but Elisabeth Hasselbeck really has done a great job of updating many of the dishes with the knowledge and ingredients that are available these days.
I actually like this cookbook much more than the Betty Crocker gluten-free cookbook because of the contemporary spin and thought that went into the recipes. The baking, given the flour mixing information is far better than what you would find in cookbooks a few years ago. A minor complaint would be that there could be a few more avant garde recipes, but Hasselbeck clearly points out that she wanted to write a family-friendly gluten-free resource. I am constantly converting dishes to meet my food intolerance, so it takes a lot more to impress me these days, five years into my journey with gluten intolerance.
I feel like Deliciously G-free was designed to be a readable reference tool suitable even for people who are not gluten-free themselves but need to occasionally cook special meals for friends or family. Being a blogger, I tend to look for a crazy amount of detail and originality in a book. I thought it was curious that only the salads had nutritional info, for example. Even though that causes me to dock this book a half star, I think that the way that Elizabeth laid this book out makes it much more readable for the non-expert. From its position on the Amazon Book sales rankings, it seems that far more people than chefs and gluten-free living consultants are reading this gem.
RATING: 900 stars/ 1000 stars (or 4.5/5)
If you do not have any gluten-free resource cookbooks, I definitely recommend Deliciously G-free: Food So Flavorful They’ll Never Believe It’s Gluten-Free (is it just me or are titles getting longer and longer?). Even if you have a couple books from a few years ago, pick this one up. There are meals that will likely suit even the taste buds of picky kids.