From School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up–With an emphasis on fresh, healthy, and made-from-scratch dishes, this title offers up a wide array of recipes from breakfast to dessert and everything in between, illustrated with fantastic photography. The recipes are all formatted in steps titled “On your mark…Get set…Cook!” The chapter headings are all show-business related–“Star-studded Salads and Dressings,” “Red Carpet Desserts”–but it isn't clear why. Also, several recipes call for other recipes to be made first: the hummus calls for “sesame sauce” that is featured on another page and the mashed potatoes call for roasted garlic butter, which also appears on another page. Most teens don't want a three-page recipe for burgers. Better choices include Rozanne Gold's Eat Fresh Food: Awesome Recipes for Teen Chefs (Bloomsbury, 2009) and Megan, Jill & Judi Carle's Teens Cook: How to Cook What You Want to Eat (Ten Speed, 2004).Genevieve Gallagher, Charlottesville High School, VA
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With its clearly outlined, sophisticated recipes and sumptuous color photos worthy of a coffee-table title, this substantial, well-designed cookbook takes its young audience seriously as it invites them to develop culinary skills. In contrast to some youth cookbooks, there are no condescending attempts to cutesify food on these pages. Locricchio has collected an excellent repertoire of basic dishes that will appeal to a broad teen palette while also reflecting young people’s growing awareness of and comfort with international flavors and healthy choices. A section of breakfast dishes, for example, includes two salsa recipes, an eggless tofu scramble, and “Slow Cakes” made with buckwheat, which, like several other lesser-known ingredients throughout the book, is defined in a succinct, informative sidebar. Also included are comfort-food favorites such as mac and cheese and chicken pot pie; a whole chapter on pizzas; and mouthwatering desserts, including chocolate fondue and ice-cream sandwiches. Safety cautions, equipment suggestions, conversion charts, boxed tips, and a glossary round out this inspiring, contemporary guide, which should be a first suggestion to any aspiring young chef. Grades 7-12. --Gillian Engberg