Organic food is synonymous with premium quality, the deepest, richest taste, conscientious farming, and optimum health. It’s what we need to feed our kids, what we deserve to feed ourselves. And no one is doing more to popularize organic food that Myra Goodman, a mother, a creative cook, and most significantly, co-owner of Earthbound Farm, the world’s largest grower and purveyor of organic produce.
In Food to Live By, a dazzling full-color cookbook, Myra Goodman offers an utterly appealing, new casual style of cooking based on using the best ingredients, organic or otherwise. The dishes are irresistible: Sweet Corn Chowder. Spinach, Feta and Mushroom Quiche. Foggy Day Chili. Merlot-Braised Short Ribs with Cipollini Onions. Spicy Chicken Lettuce Wraps. Ginger Lime Salmon. Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Spiced Orange Sauce. Blue Cheese Smashed Potatoes. Coconut Lemongrass Sorbet. Cherry Panna Cotta. Farm Stand Carrot Cake. Plus, throughout are Farm-Fresh Ingredient boxes—on sorrel, corn, asparagus, artichokes— cooking and shopping tips, and health notes.
Before Myra and her husband, Drew, founded Earthbound Farm, they tended a small organic raspberry patch in Carmel, California—and Myra baked (and sold) amazing Raspberry Corn Muffins, plus jams, and more. Then Earthbound grew to offer organic lettuce mixes to local restaurants, and eventually the rest of the country. When The Organic Kitchen at Earthbound Farm opened, it was yet another venue for Myra, and the café’s chefs, to share delicious recipes and ideas. Now Food to Live By brings this organic revolution to everyone who cares about what they eat.
5 Stars Best Ever Cookbook!
The Earthbound Farm “Food to Live By” Organic Cookbook is my absolute favorite. I have it out on my counter all the time. I look through it almost every morning as I drink my coffee just to see the pictures and study the recipes. Not only are the recipes simple, easy and absolutely delicious but the stories are very fun to read. One of my favorite recipes is the Spicy Chicken Lettuce Wraps. I double the recipe and freeze half for when my kids come to visit. They LOVE it! My favorite dessert is the Summer Berry Crisp. I make it all summer long and use a mixture of whatever berries are available at the time. The Grilled Lamb Chops with Mongolian Sauce is another favorite. I also MUST share that the “Food to Live By” soups are some of the best I have ever had! Being an intuitive cook, I usually find myself adding and subtracting ingredients from recipes and with this cookbook I don’t do either. The recipes are perfect as they are. I’ve given this cookbook to about 10 friends for their birthdays and as holiday gifts. I highly recommend it and can’t wait for Myra Goodman’s next cookbook to become available this summer.
5 Stars Beautiful!
My husband and I are so fortunate to live near the Earthbound Farm Stand in Carmel Valley. It is the ultimate place to go for organic, local, and seriously good produce, flowers, and prepared food. And Myra’s fabulous cookbook reflects her respect for nature, the wholesome and beautiful food that it can produce, and the workers who bring it to us. She supports the local community (including the local hospital where the field workers receive healthcare) and we are therefore very happy to support her by shopping at the Farm Stand and giving this cookbook to our guests who visit here. Everyone who as cooked from this book has thanked us for the recipies and we thank her for writing it. Maggie and Ron
3 Stars Nothing new but a great read and lots of interesting information about organic stuff
I have given this book to a couple of ‘foodie’ friends, safe in the knowledge that they will find it a useful and informative addition to their collection of cook books. Personally, I like it more for the story it tells about how Earthbound Farms came into being, as the recipes are all a little unexciting, but it is what it is. I have made several dishes from it, and they always turn out well, which isn’t always the case with a recipe. Several of the dressings have become firm favorites of mine, in particular, the classic red wine vinaigrette (page 95) The Flying Fish sesame seed soy dressing (page 95) and I make the Tabbouleh (page 272) all the time(minus the peas though). I have also made the corn and black bean salad (page 237) which is delicious. I really want to make the Swiss chard with raisins and pine nuts (page 262) but have yet to try it. Al in all I would say this is a great book to read, and it does have some really nice vegetable recipes, but please note it is NOT a vegetarian cook book.
5 Stars Delightfully tasty
Food to Live By written by Myra Goodman is one of my favorite cookbooks. While I have many, I find that this book offers many recipes that help make use of fresh ingredients that are both healthful and tasty. Each chapter starts out with a story and information about the particular dishes being made and also includes several beautiful clear photographs.
The book starts out as a somewhat biography on how Earthbound Organics (Myra and her husband’s business) got started and their first few years of life on a farm where they eventually developed their prepackaged organic greens salads.
The first recipe chapter, It All Began With Raspberries is of course about the delectable little red berry. My favorite recipe from this chapter would be the Raspberry corn Muffins. Easy to make they are very tasty and a big hit at my workplace. They use fresh berries and are sweetened with honey instead of sugar, making them very healthy. But the raspberry chapter isn’t just about muffins. It also has recipes for Scones, Jams, Ice Creams and more.
The next chapter is Soup. While all the soups I have made from this book are delicious, they are surprisingly time consuming. When one thinks of soups, easy throw together meals come to mind. Not so with Myra’s methods. Her Sweet Corn Chowder, while delicious is very labor intensive. Even the corn is being cut from the cob! The Simply Chicken Soup, despite its name also took quite a bit of time to make. Also a chore in the kitchen, the Savory Split Pea Soup and the Mexican Albondigas soup. Not all were time consuming however, the Hearty Cauliflower Bisque was extremely easy to make. And as I said, all were delicious and well worth the time in the kitchen. This section also featured a field guide to Squash, with 9 different varieties highlighted.
Leafy Green Salads is the next chapter. As someone who just throws salads together I don’t use this chapter as much as the rest of the book. It does include a Field Guide to Gourmet Greens which has pictures and descriptions of 25 different kinds of salad greens. It also includes a mini-chapter of Versatile Vinaigrette’s, Dips, and Crunchy Nuts; all perfect accompaniments to a salad.
The next chapter explores Meat and Poultry Main Dishes. One of my favorite recipes of this chapter was the Maple-Brinded Pork Chops. It was like eating meat candy and took surprisingly little prep time. This chapter also included a very easy recipe for roasting a chicken. Mine came out looking just as golden and delicious as the full-page picture. Curried Chicken Salad was a unique take on a traditional meat salad and Myra inventively serves hers in avocado halves. One meal I wasn’t particularly fond of from this section was the Herbed Turkey Loaf with Honey Mustard Glaze; unfortunately, this loaf fell prey to the usual dry texture that turkey seems to give.
Fish and Shellfish are the next part of the book. Being land-locked I have not made any of these recipes as it seems that to do them justice, fresh seafood would be needed. Most of the recipes look delcious although some, like the Ginger Lime Salmon seem to have a odd unique flavor combination.
The Pasta and Vegetarian Main Dishes is one of my favorite chapters. The Grilled Vegetable Lasagna, while very time consuming, was one of the most delicious lasagnas I’ve had the experience of eating and the Farm Stand Spinach Cannelloni was easy to make and one of my favorite dishes of all time. The chapter also featured a section on Great Tasting Tomatoes that featured pictures and descriptions on 8 different kinds of tomatoes ranging from green, to red, to yellow. Warning, this chapter also includes several recipes for tofu for those who may not be the biggest fan of the soy substitute.
Chapter 7 covered side dishes. While there is a plethora of recipes in this section, I found some of these the most difficult to make. Due to my relative inexperience with fresh artichokes, the Roasted Balsamic Artichoke Bottoms was a complete flop for me. However, on the opposite side of the spectrum, the Roasted Asparagus, Blue Cheese Smashed Potatoes, and Creamy Potato Gratin were easy to make and very tasty.
Breakfast and Brunch was next. While not a big fan of breakfast I enjoyed several of these recipes. The Spanish Egg “Souffle Cake” was interesting and a very unique way of making breakfast. The Morning Glory Muffins made quite a few and while they used a ton of ingredients, I imagined it was just as healthy as eating a granola bar full of goodies. She also included a whole section on Smoothies in this chapter.
Chapter 9 covered desserts. In this chapter, she included a Field Guide to Apples. 6 different apples were featured with pictures and information. I’m not a dessert fan so I personally haven’t made any of these recipes. Although, some of the pictures might be enough to convert me and make me try this section out.
The last chapter is simply titled “The Basics” and is a very handy section for a cook who likes to make everything from scratch. She has recipes for making your own chicken stock (which I now do every time I have leftover chicken parts), flavored vinegars (I have made the raspberry, very easy), Asian sauces such as Teriyaki, and even pie crusts and Matzoh meal.
Overall, the book contains 222 main recipes, although there are several “smaller’ recipes that either accompany a main one or showcase a technique. In addition to this, the book has several smaller sections within chapters that explain an ingredient or give a specific technique for preparation.
I have recommended this cookbook to several other people who love it just as much as I do. While some of the recipes may use too many ingredients or be very complicated, the majority showcase easy to obtain ingredients and spectacular flavor.
5 Stars Eating with my eyes!
The photo’s are spectacular! I found myself wanting to grow my own produce after seeing the beautiful produce. The recipes I’ve tried so far are soooo good. It’s a refreshing upgrade from my old recipes. My kids are eating better!