Here is something you may not know about me: I would never consider myself a cook. I am not necessarily a beginner but I'm definitely not anywhere near intermediate. I can boil eggs, make tacos, pan-fry pork chops and more. Nevermind that I just learned how to dice tomatoes a month ago (thanks, youtube)!
I am a member of Blogging for Books, where you choose a book to review on your blog (no, you don't get paid but for a book lover, like me, it is the coolest program). My first two book reviews have been historical non-fiction- one about the Lusitania and the other about Wrigley Field and the Chicago Cubs. I decided I would switch it up this time and go for a cookbook.
Citrus by Valerie Aikman-Smith and Victoria Pearson caught my eye immediately with a mouth-watering cover shot of their Orange & Rosemary Polenta Cake.
When the book arrived, I immediately picked out several of the seventy-five recipes that looked like they were on my cooking level. By my cooking level, I mean I knew what all the ingredients were and the instructions seemed doable.
The book is divided by fruit: lemon, lime, orange, tangerine, grapefruit and the rest (kumquats and yuzu, for example). While most of the recipes do have pictures, there are quite a few that don't have any photo. I am not a confident home chef so I need that picture to I feel like I'm kind of doing something right!
I like that the table of contents also has dishes divided by course. You can choose from breakfast, starters, main courses, salads, soups, sides, desserts, drinks and pantry staples (think citrus salt or oil). There is also a short segment at the beginning for Citrus Basics. Did you know you should roll citrus fruits before juicing? I didn't. Each chapter also begins with background on the specific fruit highlighted and talks about different types of that fruit.
I decided to make the Key Lime Pie because you can't review a cookbook without actually cooking one of the recipes.
First I'd like to note that I cheated and I used a store bought graham cracker pie crust. I also thought I had unsweetened coconut flakes at home but I had sweetened sooo I skipped putting that on top. I also attempted the nice garnish but it was not quite right.
The recipe was really easy to follow. I do regret not having a hand juicer for the key limes when I made the pie, though one has since been purchased for future cooking purposes. My husband and I hand to squeeze each key lime until we got to 1/2 cup (insert laughing/crying emojis here).
My topping wasn't as nice as the picture but I likely didn't beat the heavy cream long enough. It still tasted good though! I was really excited about how well the pie turned out. It tasted like something I'd buy at a restaurant.
I have several other recipes I am going to be making soon. I am definitely going to try the Lemon Gateau next which has 7 ingredients...all stuff that I already have (eggs, sugar, flour, etc.).
Overall, I really enjoyed this cookbook. Most of the recipes have ingredients that I would have around my house or would be easy to obtain. I loved the pictures though there were some that could have been less messy (visible crumbs off to the side).
Have you seen this cookbook? What did you think? Do you like cooking with citrus fruits? Which are your favorite?
Disclaimer: I did receive Citrus courtesy of Blogging for Books in exchange for a review. All pictures on this post and opinions provided are my own.