Weekend Cooking – Reviews: Simply Bento & Cooking With Scraps

Weekend Cooking is a weekend blog meme hosted by Beth Fish Reads. This week I’m doing some more reviews! I read a lot of cookbooks over the summer and fall. And both of these are ARC’s that I received from NetGalley.

Simply Bento – By Yuko & Noriko.

Goodreads Synopsis: Simply Bento features 140+ healthy and delicious bento recipes—including mains and sides—that you can make every day of the week, using a combination of traditional and non-traditional ingredients. Learn about different types of bento boxes and accessories, how to assemble your box, and everyday items you will need in your pantry, as well as how to plan ahead so that your morning prep is a breeze.

Find on Goodreads and Amazon.

The decision to pick up this book was pretty random but I am very glad that it happened. Simple Bento has an endless list of easy lunch ideas that are healthy, some of them vegan, some low carb, some of them just traditional Japanese lunches and even some more Americanized lunches.

I found myself liking the cookbook from the first few pages. I loved that the authors started with a comprehensive list of ingredients you should have if you want to cook Japanese food. Some of them I had heard of before, but I had never stumbled on a complete list of kitchen essentials. For that alone I would buy this book someday.

From there I found that the recipes were easy to follow, everything looked and sounded so tasty. It gave me a lot of different ideas on how to change up what I eat for lunch. For me lunch is the hardest meal of the day, and usually I stick to leftovers but sometimes that gets old. And what I liked about Simply Bento was that each recipe had a section called “make ahead” which tells which parts you can make the night before to make assembly easier the next day.

In all this is a great book. I gave it four stars on Goodreads.

Cooking With Scraps – By Lindsay-Jean Hard

Goodreads Synopsis: In 85 innovative recipes, Lindsay-Jean Hard—who writes the “Cooking with Scraps” column for Food52—shows just how delicious and surprising the all-too-often-discarded parts of food can be, transforming what might be considered trash into culinary treasure.
Here’s how to put those seeds, stems, tops, rinds to good use for more delicious (and more frugal) cooking: Carrot greens—bright, fresh, and packed with flavor—make a zesty pesto. Water from canned beans behaves just like egg whites, perfect for vegan mayonnaise that even non-vegans will love. And serve broccoli stems olive-oil poached on lemony ricotta toast. It’s pure food genius, all the while critically reducing waste one dish at a time.

Find on Goodreads and Amazon.

I am always looking for more uses for my scraps these days. I have a compost at my inlaws house, but I can’t always get to it on a regular basis. I also make all of my own vegetable broth with veggie scraps, but I wanted more ideas. So I was pretty excited to get my hands on a copy of this book.

And I definitely got some ideas from this book! One thing I took away was the idea of infusing alcohol with different scraps, which can then be used for cocktails or cooking. I also liked the authors ideas for using banana peels for cakes and other sweet dishes.

There were plenty of other ideas in the book that I’m excited to try. Some of them include “Kale Stem Hummus” and the “Charred Asparagus end Pesto”.

I am definitely going to be buying this book someday, and I gave it four stars on Goodreads.


3 thoughts on “Weekend Cooking – Reviews: Simply Bento & Cooking With Scraps”

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