Disclaimer: I was sent a copy of this cookbook by Penguin Random House for review purposes, and was given a second copy to give away as a prize. I was not financially compensated for my review and all thoughts and opinions are my own.
Y’all ready for a cookbook review? Because today’s post marks the first cookbook review on Crumb Kitchen—and what better way to celebrate that than dedicate the review to a book that is all about one of my favourite foods . . . yogurt!
Yogurt Every Day: Healthy and Delicious Recipes for Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and Dessert by Hubert Cormier is exactly what it says it is: more than 75 recipes for different types of meals that contain yogurt in some way. The author, Cormier, is a registered dietitian and author of four other books on nutrition in his native French. Yogurt Every Day marks his first foray into English-language books.
First, let me say this: I like the book. A lot. When you’re a dietitian and are writing a cookbook on a currently popular type of food, the allure of turning the book into a story-based ode to how great your ultra-healthy lifestyle is must be there. There are so many cookbooks being released now that seem less recipe-focused and more about the author wanting to talk about themselves endlessly, and frankly, it’s tiring. While those books have their time and place (sometimes you just want to read about peoples’ crazy and interesting lives), it’s a relief that Yogurt Every Day isn’t like that at all.
What Cormier, and the book itself, excels at is creating a resource for straight-forward, well-known recipes that just happen to be healthier than their traditional counterparts. You won’t find many niche ingredients in the book that’ll send you searching in the obscure bulk area of your local hipster co-op. Almost every recipe and ingredient in this book are accessible to a broad range of people—the book’s aim, I’d bet. The bright, welcoming food photography aids in this sense of ease, as does the index page at the front of the book, showing miniature preview photos of every single recipe. I loved this aspect of the book; no need to flip through it endlessly to find what you want.
Another great part is the nutrition pages near the beginning of the book, detailing—with scientific evidence—why yogurt earns its healthy label. I found it particularly interesting that yogurt is the only dairy product included in the prudent dietary pattern, which is a style of eating that focuses on fruits and vegetables, fish, legumes and poultry, basically a healthy diet we should all be adopting.
But by far my favourite part of Cormier’s introductory section is the chart on page 9, which tells you exactly how to use yogurt as a substitute in everything from dips to cheesecake to baked goods. This is extremely helpful and I’ll be keeping this handy in the future for reference.
What I Made
As a former dessert blogger (and current dessert lover), I had to reign in my impulse to make only dessert recipes from Cormier’s book. Trust me, this is hard; the dessert recipes all look delicious! (The Chocolate-Dipped Cheesecake Bites on page 189 and the Coffee Semifreddo on page 183 really stood out.)
Instead, I made three recipes spanning breakfast, dinner and dessert.
First up was the breakfast recipe, Cormier’s simply titled Milkshake on page 39. A milkshake for breakfast?! Believe it. This recipe was filled with Greek yogurt, frozen banana, unsweetened almond milk, honey, almond butter and more. Cormier even suggests throwing in some cake sprinkles and I did—yum. This easy recipe is one I’d definitely go back to for a quick, filling and nutritious on-the-go breakfast. It was subtly sweet and rich in a way that was surprising but welcome.
Second was the Butter Chicken recipe on page 89. This recipe came together quickly and was a delightfully lightened-up version of the original. I made some rice while cooking the recipe and got five heaping servings for work-week lunches in about half an hour. Adding on the subtle spice—you could definitely amp up the garam masala and maybe add in some hot pepper if you’re a spice fiend—and light creaminess of yogurt and cream, this recipe was a winner in my books. Want to make it too? Check out the recipe below!
- 3 tbsp. (45 mL) butter
- 1 red onion, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tbsp. (30 mL) tomato paste
- 1 tsp. (5 mL) garam masala
- Pinch of ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp. (2.5 mL) finely-grated fresh ginger
- 1 cup (250 mL) tomato sauce
- 1 tomato, diced
- 2 large chicken breasts (about 5 ounces/150 g each), cut into 1-inch (2.5 cm) cubes
- ¾ cup (180 mL) canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- ½ cup (125 mL) plain, high-fat Greek yogurt
- ¼ cup (60 mL) cream (15% milk fat)
- Cilantro (optional, for garnish)
- In a nonstick skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Sauté the onion until it is translucent.
- Add the garlic, tomato paste, garam masala, cinnamon, and ginger, and cook for 1 minute. Add the tomato sauce and the diced tomato, and stir to combine.
- Mix in the chicken and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring often.
- Add the chickpeas, yogurt, and cream, and mix to combine. Simmer for another minute, or until the chickpeas are warmed through.
- Serve with naan bread and wild rice. Garnish with cilantro if desired.
Excerpted from Yogurt Every Day Hubert Cormier. Copyright © 2017 Hubert Cormier. Food photography by Catherine Côté. Published by Appetite by Random House®, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.
Finally, I made the Brownie Bites on page 166. If someone tells me I can eat brownies and still be healthy—within reason of course—I’m game. I made these bites in a mini-muffin pan like Cormier suggested but found I had to almost double the baking time. Maybe it was my pan, my oven or something else but you definitely have to bake them longer if you’re filling them up to the top like I was. (He doesn’t suggest how far to fill up the tins.) Still, they turned out moist and gooey at the end and they were pretty darn tasty for a brownie without white sugar or butter. These would be great in the freezer, where you can pop one or two in your lunch bag each day before leaving for work or school.
What I Want to Make in the Future
Ummm . . . everything? Seriously, I don’t say this often as I have an impressive collection of unused cookbooks, but almost all of the recipes in Yogurt Every Day look appealing and easy to me.
I’m going to try the Fruits en Papillote (page 28), Sharp Cheddar Macaroni (page 47), Cold Cucumber, Yogurt and Dill Soup (page 55), Sweet Potato Gnocchi (page 93), Duck Breast Poutine (page 120—I can’t wait!), Orange and Almond Scones (page 149) and so many more. This book is a treasure trove.
Would I Recommend This Book?
If it wasn’t already apparent, yes. This is a book that will get used. It’s not full of trendy, hard-to-find ingredients and what I like to call ‘your hopes and dreams for your culinary career’—you know, all those recipes you think you’ll make but never get around to because they’re so fussy.
If you follow Crumb Kitchen already, you’ll know I’ve changed my eating habits drastically over the past few months and yogurt is a huge part of my daily healthy food intake already. This book gives me more than 75 ways to use it creatively instead of my usual routine of getting lazy and eating it plain at work.
I can’t wait to make some more of Cormier’s recipes and I really hope you folks will too. Speaking of which, one of you can!
* Simply comment on this post telling me how you use yogurt in your culinary creations to win a free copy of Yogurt Every Day. This contest is open to Canadian residents only (excluding Quebec) and ends June 30 at 9 p.m. EST. Good luck! *