Friday, March 9, 2007

Go For The Real Thing Every Time: Real Girls Eat by Anthea Paul

Ahh. Young Adult. Self Help. Two of the more embarrassing sections to be seen in at your local bookstore. I've never had any qualms about being seen anywhere in B&N (which lead to a delightful scene when several hardbacks fell on my head in the kidlit aisle), but should you choose to brave their cross section and peruse the YA Nonfic rack, you may very well happen upon a treasure like this one.

The Girlosophy series is well known for stunning photography and advice that ranges from the practical to the transcendent. They are essentials for the growing girl's bookshelf. Girlosophy: Real Girls Eat by Anthea Paul is one of the newest additions to the Girlosophy family. A guide to healthy eating and a cookbook, pretty and useful as the best guides are. The Girlosophy look combines clear visuals (and this is real food here, with all of its lumps and bumps and burned bits but still mouthwatering) and tropical colored text with a clean collaged style; very distinctive, very appealing.

Anthea Paul starts us off with a confession: she wasn't born with healthy eating habits, instead snacking and starving her way through her teens and young adulthood. After swinging from one bad habit to its extreme opposite, she took charge of her health and overhauled her eating habits entirely. Her advice here is solid and reassuring (I've been a vegetarian for twelve years and have heard all of it from my doctor at some point or another); she encourages a healthy relationship with food:

The point of Real Girls Eat is to urge you to enjoy your food in whatever form it takes. At the same time, it is also to help you understand how food nourishes you energetically, depending on the origins of the food, who made it, how it was handled and processed etc. Apart from choosing the best food available to you in the first place, you can imbue the food you are about to eat with sacred energy yourself...You communicate with your body every time you eat so make the experience a good one!

The second half of the book is devoted to recipes, 13 photoillustrated by resident Girlosophers and the rest set up around the clock (9-11 AM: French Toast Fingers. 3-6 PM: Spiced Chickpeas and Easy Hummus. 6-9 PM: Vegetable & Cashew Curry. 9-11 PM: Lychee Slushy). There's a good mix of veggie and omnivorous recipes, ingredients are listed in metric and imperial, and--my favorite bit--there's a List of Things With Which To Stock Your Cupboard , a life lesson I missed out on as a wee one.

Absolutely recommended for veteran Girlosophers and newcomers alike.

Girlosophy: Real Girls Eat by Anthea Paul, Barnes and Noble, Powell's

Read it, and feeling inspired?, the premier FLB fansite, has a recipe database for just about every meal mentioned in the Block canon (scroll down for the recipe section).


Callan's Sketchblog said...

eee you updated! well done as always- and someone created an FLB recipe database? that's brilliant, and excellent idea for a series of themed dinner parties!

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