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The Organic Food Shopper's Guide Paperback – March 4, 2008
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From Publishers Weekly
Cox, a former editor at Organic Gardening magazine, has been promoting organics since long before it was fashionable. Using his 30 years of organics knowledge in this guide-cum-cookbook, he attempts to untangle, for the average consumer, the confusing mess of what to eat. Readers will find concrete advice in this basic primer: the science of organic farming is followed by a product-by-product guide to organically farmed foods that can be found in the market. Organized by food group (vegetables, fruits, protein, etc.), each food is broken down by season—how to shop for it, the reason to buy the organic version, and a simple recipe or two that showcases the strength of the main ingredient. The best answer for the health of humans and the health of the planet is to buy everything organic, and the eventual redundancy of the organic advantage paragraph on each food reveals just that; there are only so many ways to explain that the product tastes better and that the farming method doesn't destroy the soil. The best parts of the book are the informational inset boxes; Cox is knowledgeable about all the food issues facing consumers and these boxes—including information on mad cow, local agriculture, fair trade and food labeling—showcase his expertise. (Feb.)
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I was specifically shopping for cookbooks with more vegetable ideas overall when I chose these. They were even more than what I thought I wanted since not only are there recipes but the volumes of information to help choose was exactly what I was looking for. I grew up in a meat and potato family and married the same. I did get more into veggies, organics and juicing in college but really have veered back to the mainstream diet due to hubbies likes. Honestly I did alot of juicing because I was convinced most of what went in would taste bad if I had to actually taste it. I have been desperately searching for ways to diversify the family diet so that I can incorporate more nutritious foods that taste good.
The bible is a perfect kitchen companion. There are full color pages with pictures of the produce for those of us that don't always know what their food should look like and are trying to learn. The focus is on organically produced ingredients all the way around. There are details about how the produce should look, when it is in season, different varieties available and how to choose. Again, this info is in the shoppers guide as well, but in less depth (and none of the photos). There are easily 4x more recipes in the bible.
Personally I subscribe to the reduce-reuse-recycle plan as often as posssible so buying used was the way to go. As such they were affordable enough that I was not displeased with how much was exactly the same. I am very confident that they will get a ton of use. The expertise of the author inspires confidence that the information is accurate. I am really looking forward to working my way through the recipes.
In addition to these I got the earthbound farms cookbook and Colorado Fit Kitchen (which i really love and would also recommend).