Cookbook review: It's All Good by Gwyneth Paltrow
Whether you're an award-winning actress or not, your good health should be paramount. Gwyneth Paltrow shares some of her lessons — and recipes — in her latest cookbook.
Everyone gets busy. Everyone becomes exhausted, and everyone gets stressed from time to time. For Gwyneth Paltrow, author of It's All Good: Delicious, Easy Recipes That Will Make You Look Good and Feel Great (you might also know her for her acting), all of these things and more, seemed to clobber her at once.
Out with what may ail you
Seeking answers to her health concerns and following her doctor's advice to go on an elimination diet to "clear out her system and heal," Gwyneth changed her eating habits. She wiped out goodies like coffee, alcohol, sugar, dairy, gluten, soy and even things like tomatoes and shellfish. She recruited Julia Turshen, a food writer and producer, to help her develop tasty recipes with nourishing ingredients that were similar to the comfort food she craved.
We know that healthy eating can have profound power on people. Gwyneth noticed that she began to look and feel better after modifying her diet. This cookbook is her way to celebrate and share her experience with others.
Good ingredients, good food
In the cookbook, there are no recipes that contain sugar. There are recipes with just trace amounts of gluten (with alternatives given). As for dairy, you won't find any mentioned on these pages, save for a few that include goat's milk or sheep's milk yogurt. You won't find overly-processed ingredients, either.
As bookends to the recipes within the book, you'll find helpful guides for kitchen essentials, from what to stock in the fridge to spices and items to use to line your cupboards. There are also detailed weekly menu suggestions. The recipes and basic instructions (think chicken stock and poached eggs) that fall on the pages in between are for soups, salads, fish, some meat, drinks, sweets, and other such things.
Try a recipe from It's All Good:
Chicken burgers, Thai Style
- 1 pound ground chicken (preferably dark meat)
- 2 garlic cloves, very finely minced
- 2/3 cup cilantro, finely chopped
- 2 shallots, very finely minced
- 1 teaspoon very finely minced red chili (more or less, however you like it)
- 2 teaspoons fish sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons neutral oil (like canola, grapeseed or safflower oil)
- Thoroughly mix the chicken with the garlic, cilantro, shallots, red chili, fish sauce, salt and pepper. Form the mixture into 4 burgers, each about 3/4-inch thick.
- Heat a grill or grill pan over medium heat. Rub each burger on both sides with a bit of the safflower oil and grill for about 8 minutes on the first side and another 5 minutes or so on the second, or until nicely marked and firm to the touch.
About the authors
Gwyneth Paltrow is an Oscar winner and author of the New York Times best-selling cookbook, My Father's Daughter. She is a mother and an actress and splits her time between London and New York. Her website, GOOP.com, covers food, travel, fashion and wellness.
Julia Turshen is a food writer and producer. Most notably, she co-authored Spain: A Culinary Road Trip with Mario Batali and The Kimchi Chronicles with Marja Vongerichten. Julia's writing has been featured in Food & Wine and the Epicurious website and Gourmet Live blog. Julia lives in New York, where she was born and raised.