Friday, April 2, 2010

Cookbook Review: Legends in the Kitchen

In our celebrity obsessed culture it is about time we had the opportunity to cook the recipes of our favorite stars. Although many of the celebrities featured in Legends in the Kitchen: Celebrity Recipes for a Cause are more recognizable to older generations, this cookbook familiarizes readers of all ages with Hollywood legends. This is due in part to the full page introductions before each recipe, which provide a picture of the celebrity contributor, as well as a brief anecdote about the recipe. Readers are sure to appreciate this personal touch and will enjoy reading the first hand accounts of those they admire.

With almost 60 recipes featured in the book, beginners will likely love the simplicity surrounding each dish; however, it is possible more advanced chefs will be looking for more of a challenge. From soups, such as Andy Williams' "Andy's Chicken Soup" to desserts, like Betty White's "Crunchy Pie," this cookbook provides numerous serving options to the reader.

Legends in the Kitchen creates an exclusive relationship between the celebrity and the reader with its stories of Hollywood; however, it lacks the efficiency of many other cookbooks . The book connects readers with the contributors but it does not connect them with the food. Since there are no pictures of the food, the cookbook relies on the appeal of celebrities to draw the attention of those who love to cook. Many individuals who purchase cookbooks do so because of the brilliance and intensity of the photos but with only black and white photos celebrities, Legends of the Kitchen fails to attract those who are not familiar with Hollywood.

A lack of contributor tips and planning menus also leaves the reader looking for more. It is not always easy to follow a recipe; therefore, helpful hints and suggestions are often needed and desired by readers to act as a guide. Planning menus are also beneficial to many who enjoy throwing dinner parties or who enjoy cooking a thoughtful meal for their family. By not giving readers the option to plan their future meals, the book does not possess the feeling of beloved a cookbook.

Despite its flaws, Legends of the Kitchen is a fun cookbook for those interested in celebrity culture. With a percentage of the sales going to the Motion Picture and Television Fund, which benefits health centers, retirement living, and other charitable services, it is certain the reader will be satisfied with their purchase.

Legends in the Kitchen (ISBN: 978-1-58985-054-5) is available at all bookstores and online.

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