This Week's Review - Nov 17th, 2021



Cooking Healthy by Elaina Moon

The conventional wisdom is that home cooking is far healthier than eating out or consuming overly processed foods. I think this is generally true, but one thing left out of this assumption is the fact that many cookbooks contain recipes that are overladen with calories and unhealthy ingredients. Evidently the secret to most tasty recipes is sugar and butter, so much butter. If recipes are not unhealthy, they may require an abundance of obscure ingredients or be incredibly time intensive.

Fortunately for the impatient and health-conscious cooks among us, author Elaina Moon’s new cookbook “Cooking Healthy with Elaina Moon” is full of—as you might have guess from the title—healthy recipes that are inexpensive, simple to make, and don’t take long to prep. Moon is a certified health coach and holds a Bachelor of Science in Nutrition from Central Washington University. Since 2015, she has owned and operated Healthy Eats Nutrition Services in Yakima, where she offers individual health coaching services and leads popular community cooking classes multiple times a month. I attended one of Moon’s cooking classes a few months back and was impressed enough to snag a copy of her newly released cookbook when copies arrived at Inklings Bookshop.

The cookbook contains 78 recipes divided into breakfasts, soups & salads, quick meals, easy sides, comfort foods, everyday sauces, and desserts. All the recipes are plant-based, but most can be easily modified to add the meat of your choice, if that’s your preference. Each recipe contains nutritional information, detailing the number of calories and the amount of carbohydrates, fats, proteins, fiber, and sodium contained per serving. Perfect for someone who prefers to count their calories or macros. 

Thus far my favorite recipe in the book is the Indian Red Lentil Soup. The ingredients cost me less than $10 dollars at the grocery store (minus the spices, which will run you more but will also last for many meals), and it took me less than an hour to chop up the vegetables and cook the soup. The result was a warm and tasty soup which complimented the rainy Yakima weather. Best yet, enough leftovers remained to make several more meals.

Moon must be commended for putting together such a simple, yet elegant cookbook. “Cooking Healthy with Elaina Moon” is perfect for individuals or families looking for a cost-conscious way to eat healthy, delicious food. Yakima is fortunate to have her expertise.

Review by J.T. Menard