The Complete Allergy-Free Comfort Foods Cookbook: Every Recipe Is Free of Gluten, Dairy, Soy, Nuts, and Eggs

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.

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.

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.