Eating for Beginners by Melanie Rehak is a wonderful book about one woman's one year journey discovering how be an eater and a parent to a picky child in today's increasingly complex world of "food rules." In this book, Rehak works at a restaurant for one year called applewood (the name of the restaurant is not capitalized), which specializes in seasonal selections as well as buying a huge majority of its food locally. In addition to working in the restaurant, Rehak takes time out work on local farms and even goes out to sea on a commercial fishing trip to find out not only about organic versus not organic but also about sustainable sources of food.
This book was an absolute delight to read. Not only is Melanie Rehak very informative in the book, she is also extremely entertaining. We follow her life for one year, through the ups and downs of being a restaurant chef, to trying to get her toddler to eat foods that are not only good for him, but good for the environment. This book really made me want to get out there and work on a farm. I loved how she described each and every experience in a way that made me want to try it too. I learned so much from this book about the source of our food in this country and why it is so important to buy local. That being said, I really liked how this book also allowed for a balance between buying local and buying from other places when something is not in season. The message of this book is not that it has to be all or nothing, but a delicate balance between the ideal and reality. There are several places in the book where one of the farmers or the restaurant owner mentions buying something from California or Florida when it is not in season and that being OK. The point of the book is not only about WHAT you eat, but HOW the food was grown, raised, fished, etc. The source of the food, the treatment of the food, if you will. Rehak gives us an added bonus by including some of the recipes she learned along the way at the end of each chapter. I can't wait to try some of those!
This is probably one of the best food books I have ever read and so I give KUDOS to Melanie Rehak for doing the research to write this amazing book! Throughout this book I kept thinking, "my goodness, I think she and I would get along so well! " This is my kind of book!
So, now that I have reviewed the book for you, I have a really great giveaway in store!
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt has offered to give 10 of my readers copies of Eating for Beginners! Giveaway ends on Sunday August 1st at midnight. Winners will be chosen at random, announced and informed by e-mail on Monday August 2nd. Here's how to win (please leave SEPARATE COMMENTS for each entry):
- Basic Entry - Leave a comment on THIS POST with your e-mail address and tell me about your favorite seasonal fruit or vegetable
- Join as a follower - 1 additional entry
- Follow me on Twitter - 1 additional entry
- Follow me on Facebook - 1 additional entry
- Grab my button and post it on your homepage -3 additional entries
- Refer a friend, if that friend becomes a follower, you both get 3 entries (be sure to let me know which friend you referred or referred you! Separate comments for each referral please!)
- Linky up to the Fit Family Challenge -3 additional entries
- Write and link a Challenge Post #1 or #2 (see below for details on the Challenge Post) - 10 additional entries
Fit Family Challenge Post #2 -
Not only will linking a challenge post win you 10 extra entries in the Eating for Beginners Giveaway, it could also get you featured as a guest blogger on The Foodie Mommie! This weeks challenge:
Go to your local farmer's market, CSA, or anywhere that sells local meat, fish, and produce. Buy ingredients to cook a completely local meal and blog about it! Linky up to have your post entered to win!
I have also extended last weeks post for another week, so you can definitely visit the challenge page to check out last week's challenge post.
Have a great rest of your weekend and until next time, happy and HEALTHY cooking and EATING!