This is the second time I’ve written this review.  Sometimes technology fails us.  Sometimes we sit down one Saturday afternoon to write the review we’ve been planning to write for a month. Sometimes you spend an hour or two formulating your sentences, taking the pictures, making sure you say all that you want to say. Sometimes you close your computer saying, ‘I’ll finish tomorrow’. Then sometimes tomorrow, when you open your computer up…sometimes it didn’t save.

Starting from square one.  Hopefully I am able to recapture what was, obviously, the pure genius of my first pass. Too bad you’ll never get to read it. I suppose at this point we should just dive right in.

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First cookbook review of the new blog and we’re going big with Michelle Tam’s Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans. If you’re not living under a rock, you’ve probably heard of her. You’ve probably been to her blog and already made some of her recipes. If you haven’t, I suggest you head over and check it out. To the book.

Let’s start with the very first thing I thought when I pulled this book off of the shelf. This thing is awesome looking. It’s a big old red book with vibrant white lettering. It’s solid. A sturdy hard cover. One of the things that always bothers me, and often prevents me from buying every single paleo cookbook I see, is that it seems like every one is $35+. Don’t get me wrong, I have zero problem spending money on this stuff. It’s something I believe in, so $35 here and there is a drop in the bucket in the grand scheme of things. However, when a book like this shows up for that sticker price, you really feel like you’re getting every pennies worth. It’s hefty. It’s gorgeous. Once you crack it open, the visual party continues. There are pictures on every page, which I love. I hate a cook book with no pictures. I want to flip through and see what I want to cook. Not have to read every page and figure out what might be good.   Wether you’re new to Paleo, or a seasoned kitchen veteran, this book will help you get started or spark some new ideas.

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It’s like looking through Paleo: The Comic Book.  Thanks to these little comic drawings, I’d imagine it to be approachable for even the most novice cook or Paleo newbie. Henry Fong (Michelle’s husband) is responsible for the design and photography. Talk about a marriage made in heaven. Michelle’s easy to follow and delicious recipes paired with Henry’s ability to make it just so damn nice to look at make this one of my favorite cookbooks on my growing stack.

The book starts off with a basic, but not overly beat-the-basics-into-the-ground introduction to Paleo. What it is, why she went down the road of whole-foods, how she stocks her kitchen and a section that I think parents will find amazingly helpful: how she got her kids to go with her.  She shares the difficulties she had getting her eldest son on the bandwagon, when he really wanted nothing to do with it. I think any parent trying to get their family on real food would do well to read through.

The recipes themselves have yet to disappoint. I’ve been making one or two things a week this past month and so far everything has been a winner. One of the things I’ve taken from her, that I am now obsessed with, is how she preps her chicken to roast. Removing the backbone and flattening it out not only provide for a quicker cook time, but much easier carving post-roast.  I had found her step-by-step guide via her website one day and have been obsessed ever since. She breaks it down, yet again, in her book with step-by-step pictures to match for her Peruvian Chicken recipe. It’s fool proof.

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Thanks to this book, chicken will never be boring again. The very first poultry recipe is her (sister’s) famed Green Chicken Wings. I made the marinade, but used it an a whole bird instead and I have to say it’s better than anything I’ve ever come up with.  It comes out this beautiful deep golden color with tons of flavor to boot. I probably looked like a rabid animal, sitting on the floor at my coffee table face deep in this chicken tearing away at the bones but it was so freaking good! Manners be damned!

Food For Humans also brought me the new love of my life: Bone Broth.  I’ve been saying I need to make it, knowing I really should make it, planning to make it, for a year if not longer.  I finally did it using Michelle’s recipe and it turned out, well, I did say it’s the new love of my life, right? Never more will there be a day where bone broth is not somewhere in my home.

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For a list of the recipes out of this book that I plan to make, simply look to it’s index. By that, I mean it’s all of them. On a trip to Denver, I fell in love with this appetizer called Devils on Horseback.  Dates stuffed with goats cheese wrapped in bacon. What’s not to love (oh, the diary…whoops). Imagine my overwhelming joy when I find, not only a ‘ricotta cheese’ recipe made from cashews, but a recipe for my new favorite snack between the big red book cover.  Just a few pages later, another favorite of mine: Eggs in Purgatory. A spicy tomato-egg baked dish. I love seeing comforts of mine amid the pages of any book. Trying someone else’s versions of foods you love allows for excitement and inspiration. If Food For Humans doesn’t inspire you to get into the kitchen, you need to check your pulse.  No book makes cooking seem as fun and full of life like this one does. Pictures abound of Michelle and her kids enjoying not only the food, but each other. It brings the kitchen back to what it should be: the heart of the home.

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I could talk about this book and show you pictures all day long, but you just need to go out and get it for yourself. I honestly have nothing critical to say about it. Sometimes cook books seem to be a lot of filler. Sometimes they’re all talk.  Sometimes the recipes are boring. With Paleo cookbooks, often I find that they’re full of ingredients I don’t even want to use like cheeses, potato starches, and tons of nuts on every page. Or there are seemingly a handful of meal ideas that seem like an afterthought to a book chock full of desserts, breads, and treats. That’s not what I want when I buy a cook book. It’s what I want when I buy the book Diary-Free Ice Cream, or Brittany Angel’s Every Last Crumb Paleo break book, but not when I’m just buying a straight up cook book. I want breakfasts. I want ideas for what I’m eating tonight. I want savory inspiration. You get that with Food For Humans in a funny, friendly, easy to follow bright red hard cover.

With Food For Humans, Michelle Tam invites you into her kitchen, her family. She shows you how to make eating real food easy and delicious in pages that are fun and full of vitality and life. Just flipping through it makes you a little happier. Eating the food that lay in it’s pages, is a whole other level. Go buy it. Like right now. And be happy.

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**Lot’s of these recipes either work for the Whole Life Challenge or can be easily adapted to fit any level. I HIGHLY recommend this book if you’re just starting out on whole foods/Paleo or if starting your first WLC or Paleo food challenge.**