When the opportunity arose to review 4 Ingredients by internationally bestselling authors Kim McCosker and Rachael Bermingham I jumped at the chance! I could not wait to crack open the book and see how many recipe ideas the book would contain using only 4 ingredients, but most importantly would be well suited for my family. How many recipes would the book contain that I actually wanted to try in my own kitchen?
The answer to that is – so many I almost didn’t know where to begin! It was an exciting surprise. I didn’t know what to expect from 4 Ingredients. Would the book be full of ideas I would never use? Would it contain lots of recipes using ingredients my family rarely buys? Well, I am here to tell you the recipes included in this book are for the everyday family or individual. The family that needs inspiration in the kitchen to make simple and delicious meals at home without having to spend lots of money or time searching for a long list of ingredients.
To keep things even more simple all the recipes can be prepared with just 1 cup, 1 tablespoon, and 1 teaspoon so there are far less dishes and utensils to clean afterwards. Is that great or what?! Often we get bored in the kitchen, caught up in the same old routine, or stuck in the eating out wheel because we are short on time. 4 Ingredients is as simple as it gets, as well as a great source of inspiration you can leave on your counter and flip through over and over again, because you know none of the recipes are going to be hugely time consuming or expensive.
Simplicity brings me so much joy! Our minds love to complicate things that don’t need to be. This book is a wonderful source of inspiration but also that clean slate so many of us are looking for in preparing family meals. There are many things I love about this book but I think my absolute favorite part is that it is a perfect jumping off point. You start with a very basic recipe that will perfectly get the job done, and you can easily add more of your family’s favorite ingredients to kick them up a notch. It is up to you, but the basics are there and the ability to keep things very simple at your finger tips.
After reading through the book I decided to start with a snack recipe for my family. Snacks are the foods that tend to be the most processed in my family, because who wants to put a lot of effort into foods in-between meals? Recently I watched a segment on the health benefits of flax seed oil so I adapted the first recipe I tried from 4 Ingredients to include mulled flax seeds. To my delight it worked out beautifully!
Flaxseed and Honey Bars (adapted from Sesame & Honey Bars p.228)
This book is full of simple inspiration, but the book itself is not the only thing that is incredibly inspirational. Another reason I really wanted to share 4 Ingredients with you is because of the story behind it. The idea for 4 Ingredients was invented one night over a glass of wine between friends Kim McCosker & Rachel Bermingham, who between them have six little boys.
“We wanted to make our busy lives a little easier in the kitchen. We wanted to pick up a cookbook and within minutes be on the way to making a quick Chicken Pie, a delicious Beef Stir-fry, mouth-watering Southern Friend Chicken, Corn Dumplings or divine little Chocolate Brownies with ingredients we could find in the cupboard so we didn’t have to get all the kids in the car and head out to find,” Rachael and Kim said.
Where the story gets even more remarkable is that the 2 women were initially turned down by publishers, but they did not let that stop them from accomplishing their dream. They started by printing 2000 copies of the book and going door to door to sell them. Now 4 Ingredients has a combined sale of over 3.5 million copies! What an amazing example of turning dreams into reality no matter what anyone says! We can all learn from their philosophy- “It’s important to focus on what you want, put in the time and effort to achieve it and you’ll be rewarded.”
4 Ingredients was followed by 3 more books, and the next one I am personally going to be on the lookout for is 4 Ingredients Fast, Fresh, & Healthy with Deepak Chopra. I recently read The Seven Spiritual Laws for Parents by Deepak Chopra and loved it. I am truly excited to see their work combined!
Disclosure: This book was offered to me in exchange for my honest opinion. SWEET because I totally HEART it!
Do you make a lot of your own snacks, such as granola bars, or go for the packaged ones?