Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Lighten Up, Ya'll, by Virginia Willis

Title: Lighten Up, Ya'll

Author: Virginia Willis

Publisher: Ten Speed Press

Date: March 3, 2015

Hardcover: 232 pages

About the Book
Lighten Up, Y’all, is a soul-satisfying and deeply personal collection of Virginia’s new favorite recipes. All the classics are covered—from a comforting Southern Style Shepherd’s Pie with Grits to warm, melting Broccoli Mac and Cheese to Old-Fashioned Buttermilk Pie. Each dish is packed with real Southern flavor, but made with healthier, more wholesome ingredients and techniques. Wherever you are on your health and wellness journey, Lighten Up, Y’all has the recipes, tools, and inspiration you need to make the nourishing, down-home Southern food you love.

My Take
I love recipe books. If it weren't for them, I wouldn't have a single clue what to make sometimes. But the most important, is finding a recipe book that has great tasting food, but not overly unhealthy. When I first saw this book, I was thinking if it is southern food, it probably is super fattening, but thought to give it a chance anyway.

What I like most about this book is how the author breaks down the different types of oils and fats. She lets you know who each of them stack up against each other. Not many books do that and it is helpful in deciding on which ones to have in your home. She then goes on to talk about 10 tips for lightening things up. For instance, drinking water (which we all know and do ~ hopefully), using spices in your food for flavour, choosing lean proteins, and measuring out your food vs eating straight out of the bag.

On to the recipes. There are 10 different chapters: Starters, salads, from the garden, grains, seafood, poultry, beef, soups, breads, and sweets. This was nice to see because most recipe books contain major meat recipes and I always have to figure out how to make it work for me ~ I'm a vegetarian. There are about 10 +/- recipes in each section. I don't think there isn't anything someone couldn't find. The pictures that went along with some of the recipes were amazing. So, if you are finding yourself wanting a new cookbook with tons of options, this would be the one.

About the Author

VIRGINIA WILLIS is the author of the acclaimed cookbooks Bon App├ętit, Y’all; Basic to Brilliant, Y’all; Grits; and Okra. Willis is a columnist for, a contributing editor to Southern Living, and was named one of “Seven Food Writers You Need to Know” by the Chicago Tribune. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia.

This complimentary book was given to me by Blogging For Books for my honest review.

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