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Cooking The Whole Foods Way [Paperback]

Christina Pirello
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)

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Book Description

March 1 1997
In this collection of 500 recipes, Pirello takes the mystery out of preparing whole foods and adds a liberal sprinkling of fun. Along with great recipes, Cooking the Whole Foods Way offers menus, meal-planning tips, wit and wisdom, and a simple philosophy which discusses why we choose the foods we eat. Online promo.

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From Amazon

Christina Pirello turned to a whole-foods diet after being diagnosed with terminal leukemia at age 26. To the shock of her doctors, and without any medical treatment, she went into complete remission. She was surprised herself, as she'd been a vegetarian for more than 10 years and wasn't convinced that cutting prepackaged foods, sugar, and dairy from her diet would make that much of a difference to her health.

Pirello says, "Macrobiotics is an understanding that that food is energy, that everything we eat becomes part of us and helps create who we become." With this philosophy in mind, she advises how to plan menus, shop for quality ingredients, and combine foods for optimum energy. She then jumps right into her collection of more than 500 recipes, among them Fresh Corn Chowder, Béchamel Sauce, and Chocolate Hazelnut Torte. They should appeal to entire families; beans, tofu, and sea vegetables do figure prominently in many dishes, but rarely have these much-maligned ingredients sounded so tantalizing. Pirello's sassiness, adventuring spirit, and lust for life are readily apparent in these recipes, and her book should certainly help make the transition to a whole-foods lifestyle a smooth one. --Erica Jorgensen

From Library Journal

Fifteen years ago, Pirello was diagnosed with terminal leukemia and given fewer than six months to live; with no other real options, she reluctantly listened to a friend who introduced her to macrobiotic cooking. She eventually adopted that diet and within months was in total remission?so it's understandable that she has become a champion of macrobiotics. She and her husband run a cooking school in Philadelphia, and this cookbook is a companion to her new PBS series. Pirello's recipes demonstrate that there's more to a macrobiotic diet than brown rice, and her exuberance and sense of fun show that macrobiotics doesn't have to be dreary. It's too bad that the headnotes often refer to various healing and other properties of certain foods without explaining the basis of such beliefs. Nevertheless, subject and other large cookbook collections will want Pirello's natural foods guide.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
Macrobiotics or whole foods cuisine carries with it a lot of baggage; a lot of misconceptions and myths surround its practice. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This is a very, very good book if you're trying to add vegetables, reduce meat/dairy, or just eat healthier. She limits added sugars to brown rice syrup, barley malt, and the occasional maple syrup, although she's open about not really wanting to use maple syrup. Recipes are pretty comprehensive, everything from sauces to desserts. Information on how to organize a meal is limited, however; you have to search through the recipes to find one that might be suitable for breakfast, and her menus look like five-course meals. As for the macrobiotic issue (in which I'm !not! an expert), she gives the basics of macrobiotics and admits that some of the foods she includes are not usually part of macro cooking. She also doesn't include a lot of detail about macrobiotics, so I was left scratching my head at some of the recipes (I thought in macrobiotics you weren't supposed to eat foods not native to the area?). But if you're not aiming for a strict macrobiotic diet, this is a great book!
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1.0 out of 5 stars gone to garbage Feb. 5 2004
Format:Paperback
The title of the book is misleading, because the book is comprised 90% of recipes, NOT techniques, wit& wisdom etc. It is not a guide, it is a recipe book. If you've decided to go macrobiotic and have access to ingredients like rutabaga and arame, this book provides you with many recipes, but for me it was totally inapplicable. I was expecting the guidelines for macrobiotic eating and cooking that I could apply to different ingredients at hand and thus was very dissapponted.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Whole Foods does not = Macrobiotics Sept. 8 2003
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Whole Foods does not = Macrobiotics as this author has decided. Whole Foods includes meat, very heartily, as it is a "whole food". I planned on a book full of recipes including snacks, which are very hard to think of, and was disappointed. The copy is trite and recipes are not very helpful regardless.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Well, OK for macrobiotics, I guess... May 7 2003
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Somewhere in this long title should appear the word "macrobiotic" so that people who are not interested could avoid buying the book!
Macrobiotic food is boring and even though often it has no meat or dairy, it is by no means similar to the lush and mouthwatering vegetarian or vegan food.
The book is huge so I thought I would get a bit from my money and I tried several of the recipes... to results from mildly disastrous to really bad. I've been a vegetarian for more than 15 years and can usually cook to the applause of meat-eating friends so I don't think the fault was mine...
As someone else said, if you a vegetarian and looking for a book with lots of recipes... don't bother with this one. My advice: buy any book from the Moosewood restaurant (just type "Moosewood" in the book search, Amazon has most of them), they're huge, creative and delicious and the recipes are flawless.
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Format:Paperback
I came to this book before I knew anything about macrobiotics, simply because I was looking for a broader spectrum of ways to cook vegetables. I love the recipies in this book, and did even before I started having macrobiotic leanings. I was suprised to note that I already had one of the key cookbooks in the macrobiotic arsenal when I got interested in the subject. Four stars instead of 5 because there is no solid macrobiotic information here, just some hints, Christina's story, and all these terrific recipies.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Get started & do wholistic magical cooking!!! Nov. 24 2002
Format:Paperback
This is such an informative book. Recipes galore. Having read so many books on whole foods cooking, I rate this one the absolute best. Simple & concise. I just felt like doing more cooking and felt truly inspired on a creative level. To make my own brew. Which is hard to find in any cookbook w/out pics. But what I really liked most was that the author credited her sources. Just about unheard of in most cookbooks. I like knowing where some of these recipes come from so that I can check the sources myself & see whatever modifications may have been made for american taste buds. Many recipes in American cookbooks are modified presicely because authors are afraid of revealing the ethnic origins of some of their recipes. Thinking that the American public is not hep enough. I stay clear of those books. Give me diversity in my plate. I like sauce & spices, I can modify it myself thank you very much. Additionally, so many cookbooks are written w/out crediting their sources. Also I liked that most of the recipes are not only good tasting but healing as well. I started using more obscure herbs & roots because of the info in this book ie. burdock root for blood strengthening. I especially enjoyed the kimpira and the vitality stew. Cook those bones for calcium & get healthy w/out the pills & supplements from these vitamin shops. Pop a vitamin, na, I'd rather eat my way to health.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Just...okay Nov. 7 2002
Format:Paperback
I bought this book a few years ago, just because I was trying to adapt a more healthy lifestyle, and for the immense amount of recipes in the book (a lot!).
I really don't see how Christina could have possibly tried all of these recipes! The several that I've tried have seemed relatively tasteless and almost inedible! The only reason why I'm giving it 3 stars is because the entire beginning section has some wonderful explanations on macrobiotics and a glossary of some different ingredients that most cooks wouldn't know on their own.
As for the recipes, I can honestly say that in my ever growing repertoire of vegan cookbooks, I very rarely refer to this one. If you're looking to go macrobiotic, maybe it would be useful, but if you're a vegan/vegetarian looking at this book because of the number of recipes....don't bother.
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