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121 of 124 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unique and Inventive Allergy-Free Recipes
Here is my attempt at deconstructing The Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook, which features some very unique, innovative recipes that are all free of gluten, dairy, soy, nuts, and eggs.

Number of recipes: 112

Paper type/quality: The book is hardbound with a glossy dust jacket. The pages are glossy and of medium weight. Splatters seem to...
Published on February 15, 2012 by Glorified Rice

versus
39 of 46 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Xanthan Gum in "Allergy-Free Dictionary of ingredients"?
I was very excited about the book, as i am very new to the allergy-free cooking and i am doing lots of research on it as well, however once i read "What the heck?: Allergy-Free Dictionary of ingredients" and found the Xanthan Gum listed as "the number-one, most important ingredient in gluten-free baking" i was very confused...

Every site i've researched, is...
Published on April 10, 2012 by Gypsyrock


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121 of 124 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unique and Inventive Allergy-Free Recipes, February 15, 2012
By 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook: Every Recipe Is Free Of Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Nuts, And Eggs (Hardcover)
Here is my attempt at deconstructing The Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook, which features some very unique, innovative recipes that are all free of gluten, dairy, soy, nuts, and eggs.

Number of recipes: 112

Paper type/quality: The book is hardbound with a glossy dust jacket. The pages are glossy and of medium weight. Splatters seem to wipe off easily.

Photography: There are medium to large full-color photos accompanying almost all of the recipes. Many are full page photos.

Does the book lay flat without assistance: Yes

General layout and design: Very straightforward and well organized into seven basic sections; Breakfast, Starters, Salads, Condiments, Dressings & Basics, Main Courses, Sides, and Desserts.

Fonts and Colors: Clear, bold black font with a few dark blue and orange accents
-Are the recipes easy to read?: Yes, very.
-Is the typeface large enough?: Yes, it is nice and bold
-Are the words and paragraphs spaced well so that it is easy to find the step you are on?: Yes, perfectly. The steps are numbered and everything is well spaced.

Extra Inclusions: Dictionary of ingredients, substitution advice, a where to shop section.

Index: Nicely organized- it is easy to find recipes by name, main ingredient, category and type.

Allergen/Special diet notes: This is an allergy free cookbook, definitely NOT a vegan cookbook. There are many meat based recipes and some of the pastry crusts call for leaf lard.

Nutritional Notes: This is not really a low calorie cookbook. The author is providing allergy free versions of comfort foods, many of which would be things that would be made on a very occasional basis...think once or twice a year as a special treat. There are some everyday recipes to be sure, but many are special and are intended to be viewed in that regard. Quite a few of the main dishes, salads and sides appear to be quite healthy though.

Skill Level: Medium There are several recipes that involve frying, making pastry crusts and assembling dessert items beyond what the average cook might be used to. The instructions are clear and easy to follow, but some of the techniques might be unfamiliar to some.

Special Ingredients: Coconut Milk Kefir, Leaf Lard, Lyle's Golden Syrup, French Lentils, Sorghum Beer, Specialty sanding sugars and sprinkles from India Tree. (Substitutions for difficult to find ingredients are suggested by the author)
Lyles Golden Syrup 16.0 Fluid Oz Per Tin - Pack 2 Tins

Special Equipment: Oil mister, Deep Fat Fryer (or a candy thermometer to keep track of the temperature of the oil in a skillet), Eclair pan, pastry bag, cookie cutters (to make animal crackers), food processor or blender. All of these items would be helpful to have in order to properly execute all of the recipes in the book, but most of them are not required. The fryer or thermometer would be the only one that would be required in order to make the fried recipes. There are seven recipes that require frying.
Misto Gourmet Olive Oil Sprayer, Brushed Aluminum

Do the recipes turn out?: So far yes, mostly.
The baked beans recipe didn't turn out like the picture suggested it would.

Do the recipes taste good? So far, they taste pretty good. I made the sloppy joes recipe last night as a special Valentine's Day Dinner for my husband and son. I think it was the best sloppy joe I have ever had.
The roasted chicken was excellent, and the baked beans were fair.
*Update* The pasta salad was excellent. I have made it three-four times and I'll be making it a lot this summer.
The roast chicken recipe is very good but the time stated in the recipe was not accurate. I had to keep it in the oven about 15-20 minutes longer than the recipe stated which may be due to size difference of the chicken.

In Summary, after thoroughly looking through this cookbook and now having tried a few of the recipes I feel ready to give this cookbook a four star rating. That could change if some of the next few recipes I try are really great. My four star rating is based on the fact that quite a few of the recipes require frying and many require a special ingredient that might be hard to find. Yes, substitutions are provided for these items, but it is just another step to go through to figure out a substitution. The rating is also based on my two great experiences making the recipes so far and the number of really unique and interesting recipes included. I am so excited to try more of these!

Some of the interesting and unique recipes are: Allergy-free versions of pop tarts, twinkies, animal crackers, thin mints, funnel cakes!, s'mores cookies, hush puppies, empanadas, mayo using cannelini beans, dolmades, pot stickers and jelly donuts.
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30 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tasty and easy..., January 17, 2012
This review is from: Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook: Every Recipe Is Free Of Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Nuts, And Eggs (Hardcover)
Got a note from Amazon that this book was available. I enjoyed the author's previous cookbook, which was focused on gluten-free desserts, so thought I would give this one a shot.

This book includes recipe;s for such scrumptious comfort foods as mashed potatoes and Chicken Tacos. I've tried four or five of the recipes already, and so far everything has been delicious. None of the recipes are boring, or mundane. The mashed potatoes, or 'smashed' potatoes as they are called, are flavored with Rosemary. The tacos are not your parents tacos. Risotto is not bland watery gluten free rice, but tastes like real risotto primavera, that is flavorful and hearty.

Best thing is they are pretty easy to prepare. And you would not even guess they are gluten free....I was really skeptical of the risotto, but it is a big winner.

The author also includes new recipes for desserts which are not included in the previous cookbook. Options that you would never expect to have again in a gluten-free diet are again available to you, and pretty easy to prepare.

Hearty comfort food? check. Gluten free? check. Easy to prepare? Check. New desserts? Check. Great cookbook? Check.
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37 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Allergy-Free Recipes!, January 17, 2012
This review is from: Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook: Every Recipe Is Free Of Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Nuts, And Eggs (Hardcover)
This book is truly amazing and such a godsend to people with multiple allergies. So many books out there are gluten-free or dairy-free, but few are free of gluten, dairy, soy, nuts, AND eggs. And even those that claim to be free of everything generally have recipes that are free of one thing or another but not everything all in the same recipe. This book truly offers delicious recipes for people with multiple allergies--and ALL of the recipes are allergy-free. And, the author has clearly gone through a great deal of recipe testing because everything is delicious and has the taste and texture of the real thing. Now you can finally enjoy things like nachos, Buffalo wings, and chocolate chip cookies again!
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BUY THIS BOOK!, January 16, 2012
This review is from: Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook: Every Recipe Is Free Of Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Nuts, And Eggs (Hardcover)
After months of anticipation I have received my copy of this cookbook! Where to start...
* the text is easy to read
* recipes are easy to follow
* it's full of beautiful pictures of what the finished product looks like
* a dictionary of ingredients
* substitution options of different ingredients
* measurement conversion units for non US residents
* a list of ingredients and where to shop for them for US residents
* a paragraph before each recipe of a personal story/memory/experience shared by the author helps you connect with her...

I love that this book has old time favorites for American, Greek, Middle Eastern, Italian, Mexican etc recipes so you can truly enjoy a great variety of foods without having any worries that it will affect your food allergies/intolerances.

The bonus for me is, my husband who is blessed with no food allergies also loves the foods I make from Elizabeth's book even though he's a picky eater!

I can't praise Elizabeth Gordon enough. She's truly hit the nail on the head with the books she's released. You can really sense her passion for what she does.

What I truly appreciate is that I can communicate directly with Elizabeth via her facebook page. If I have any questions or comments, she's right there! Check out the page [...]

If you haven't purchased this book yet, don't hesitate. You will love it. Also be sure to check out her other book full of allergy free dessert recipes. YUM! Allergy-Free Desserts: Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Egg-free,Soy-free and Nut-free Delights

~AW
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39 of 46 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Xanthan Gum in "Allergy-Free Dictionary of ingredients"?, April 10, 2012
By 
Gypsyrock (West Hollywood, CA United States) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook: Every Recipe Is Free Of Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Nuts, And Eggs (Hardcover)
I was very excited about the book, as i am very new to the allergy-free cooking and i am doing lots of research on it as well, however once i read "What the heck?: Allergy-Free Dictionary of ingredients" and found the Xanthan Gum listed as "the number-one, most important ingredient in gluten-free baking" i was very confused...

Every site i've researched, is listing Xanthan gum as deriving from "a variety of source products that are themselves common allergens, such as corn, wheat, dairy, or soy. As such, persons with known sensitivities or allergies to food products are advised to avoid foods including generic xanthan gum or first determine the source for the xanthan gum before consuming the food. Specifically, an allergic response may be triggered in people sensitive to the growth medium, usually corn, soy, or wheat. For example, residual wheat gluten has been detected on xanthan gum made using wheat. This may trigger a response in people highly sensitive to gluten."(quoted from Wikipedia.) Based on my own experience, Xanthan Gum is causing my (soy, wheat, corn) allergies to act up and i will not be using those recipes for sure. I wish they would have included that information next to this "number one" product...

In any case, i will still look through the book and hopefully find some recipes i can make.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I'm no cook..., January 22, 2012
This review is from: Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook: Every Recipe Is Free Of Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Nuts, And Eggs (Hardcover)
Frankly, I know nothing about cooking. Nothing. But since I have numerous friends who have various and sundry food allergies I felt this would be the perfect gift for them. And sure enough, I am now reaping praise as the perfect gift-giver. As thanks, I've received invitations to three dinners, all cooked following Elizabeth Gordon's recipes. Having no food allergies, I was a bit wary of what the results might be, but each and every meal was a delight and a real treat. I won't say it almost makes me want a food allergy, but.....

Congratulations to Elizabeth Gordon for such a great book and, selfishly, to me for giving such great gifts.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Easy and delicious!, January 19, 2012
This review is from: Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook: Every Recipe Is Free Of Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Nuts, And Eggs (Hardcover)
Love this book!! I tried the stuffed pepper and flank steak recipes and they were both delicious and SO easy to throw together - perfect for a weeknight meal. The best part is that the food is healthy, so I don't have to feel guilty eating it!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I am loving this book so far!!, February 1, 2012
This review is from: Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook: Every Recipe Is Free Of Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Nuts, And Eggs (Hardcover)
I just bought this book last week, and am cooking my way through it, and have to say, this is such a great cook cookbook, whether you are allergy conscious or not. The recipes are so delicious, it really doesn't taste like anything has been compromised in order to make it safe. The desserts and the entrees that I have tried have been SO tasty- Thank you Elizabeth Gordon, my family and I look forward to your next book!!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dealing with Food Allergies in "Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook" by Elizabeth Gordon, November 23, 2012
By 
This review is from: Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook: Every Recipe Is Free Of Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Nuts, And Eggs (Hardcover)
When you or your child has been diagnosed with severe food allergies, it really comes down to two choices. You can either keep trying to make multiple versions of everything at meal time or you can choose to move everyone over to the allergy free side of things. Elizabeth Gordon faced that problem as she explains in the introduction to the recently released Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook: Every Recipe Is Free Of Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Nuts, and Eggs" and went with the later decision. That resulted in this cookbook which also tries to help users deal with the high cost of such a diet.

After the introduction explaining how the book came about there is a six page dictionary of ingredients with detailed explanations. That is followed by a three page detailed explanation regarding various substitutions which is then followed by a conversion page for metrics. With the basics out of the way it is on to the recipes.

The recipes begin with "Breakfast Goodies" section that features 13 recipes. Beyond the expected suggestions for granolas of different types there are recipes for "Biscuits" (pages 6-7), "Jelly Donuts" (pages 10-11) and "French Toast" (pages 16-17) among others. Each recipe opens with a small anecdote, features detailed instructions along with the ingredient list, and in most cases has a tip of some sort regarding substitution, freezing, storage, etc. along with a color photograph of the dish. Unfortunately, there is not any nutritional information regarding fats, sugars, salt, etc. with any of the recipes in the book.

"Starters" begins on page 24-25 and features 11 recipes. "Italian Wedding Soup" (page 28) is here as is "Corn Chowder" (page 31) and "Buffalo Wings" (pages 32-33) among others. Some items, such as "Pigs in a Blanket" (pages 36-37) could do double duty as a breakfast item while "Nachos" (pages 38-39) definitely belongs here.

11 different types of "Salads" come next with Dijon Vinaigrette flavored "Potato Salad" (pages 44-45) starting things off. Also here are recipes for "Tabbouleh" (pages 48-49), "Pasta Salad" (pages 52-53) and "Coleslaw" (page 56) among others.

If you can't eat eggs, most condiments are out of the question. Elizabeth Gordon shows you how to deal with this in "Condiments, Dressing, and Basics." If you are looking for "BBQ Sauce" (Page 61), "Mayo" (page 62) or even "Croutons" (page 66) among other things this is a section to check.

"Main Courses" comes up next starting on pages 68-69 and features 33 recipes. In addition to several dealing with beef and chicken, there are recipes for "Corn Dogs" (pages 70-71), "Tamale Pie" (pages 82-83), "Sloppy Joe" (pages 86-87), "Chicken Soft Tacos" (pages 106-107) and "Pizza" (pages 114-115) among others.

You have to have "Sides" and you have them here. Whether you want "Hush Puppies" (pages 126-127), "Oven Baked Fries" (pages 132-133) or "Onion Rings" (pages 142-143) there is something here. The Onion Rings use the author's "All-Purpose Breading" (page 66) used on several dishes scattered throughout the book.

One can't forget "Desserts." The 22 recipes in this section starting on pages 145-146 feature such delectables as "Mint Thin Wafers" (page 147), "Double Chocolate Chip Ice Cream" (pages 158-159) and "Cherry Pie" (page 162-163) among others.

The book closes with a five page section on where to shop for the ingredients, a one page acknowledgement, and a four page index. A one paragraph author bio completes the book.

Despite the lack of nutritional information regarding fats, calories, protein, etc., this is a well done cookbook. The photographs by Susan Byrnes provide a very nice touch to the wealth of information in the Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook: Every Recipe Is Free Of Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Nuts, and Eggs. Variety in the dishes is also present with many much easier than some others to make, but all are geared to please the maximum number of people possible.

Material supplied by the good folks of the Plano, Texas Public Library System.

Kevin R. Tipple ©2012
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I love this cookbook, January 17, 2012
This review is from: Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook: Every Recipe Is Free Of Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Nuts, And Eggs (Hardcover)
This cookbook is great for those of us who are on a gluten free diet, have allergies or kids with allergies--or just want delicious, clear recipes that have the additional benefit of giving our immune systems a little bit of a break. Because of the wonderful comfort foods angle--twinkies, turkey chili, chicken soft tacos, stuffed peppers, and pot pie, to name a few of the clever and nostalgia-inducing recipes included--there is not a single recipe in here my kids won't love. Elizabeth Gordon's lucid style and engaging introductions to each recipe make this the rare cookbook that is as much fun to read as it is to use. Five stars, and can't wait for her next book.
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Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook: Every Recipe Is Free Of Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Nuts, And Eggs
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