A Man, A Can, A Plan

Author: David Joachim

Publisher: Rodale

Date Published: 2002

Pages: 43

“50 Great Guy Meals Even You Can Make!”

I bought this for my boyfriend as a present. He is the kind of guy that is in ecstasy over Tomato flavoured Two Minute Noodles and would be happy eating a ham, cheese and tomato sandwich every single day for lunch. This is not to say that he does not appreciate ‘posh’ food (such as oyster mornay), just that he does not need to eat it all the time. Simplicity takes precedence the majority of the time.

This book offers what no other cook book can. It has simple, fast food that (to his demographic) is considered yum. The contents have sections for ‘Ham, Beans, SpaghettiOs and Beer’. The book itself is made of some kind of cardboard so that you can be rough and accidently spill things on it without much damage. The layout is methodical, has images of the suggested food and keeps the descriptions short. The lack of a heap of ingrediants means the meals will be cheap. The book is shaped like a can. What more could you want?

 All jokes aside, it is cleverly designed and hits the nail on the head. My boyfriend particularly likes the idea of ’50’s Style Creamy Chicken’ (which is on the back cover – image is above). Cook books shouldn’t just reflect food trends and health concerns. Will some guys ever feel like whipping out the latest Donna Hay book to make a leek and goats cheese warm salad? I don’t think so. But they still have to eat, don’t they?

Having said that there are some down sides. The food itself isn’t all that healthy. It is very American – the recipes, ingrediants and style (it has an advertisement on the back of the book “Menshealth: If you want to build muscle, improve your sex life and do nearly everything better, visit our website”). It constantly suggests to use ‘low fat’ this and ‘reduced fat’ that. I am in the minority here, but I believe that low fat food is even more unhealthy than whole food (if it tastes just as good as the full fat version than they just put something bad in to substitute the flavour). Also, it has a few more ingrediants in every recipe than you’d think (some are not pictured, just listed sneakily at the bottom).

Still, it is a good book. It achieves what it sets out to do, it will appeal to its audience and it will also make you some tasty snacks. It could also be the step for people to learn about cooking from.

♥♥♥ – 3/5

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