Author: K. Dun Gifford and Sara Baer-Sinnot
Oldways has existed for over a decade and a half, pulling together the latest information about nutrition and teaching people how to incorporate that information into healthy eating patterns. This book, The Oldways Table, brings scientific, dietary, nutritional and culinary expertise to bear on the questions we ask today about how we should eat.
If you are tired of conflicting information about nutrition, this is the book for you. If you never want to hear about one more diet, this is the book for you. If you’re sick of overprocessed, nutritionally empty food, trust me—this is the book for you. If you think all that sounds great, but you want to enjoy your food for a change, this is really the book for you. This book doesn’t tell you what you should eat; it tells you why some foods are healthier than others, and then it gives you delicious recipes that make healthy eating enjoyable.
Each section begins with an explanation of the food group it is discussing, followed by several essays by experts on the subject. The “experts” are dieticians, nutritionists, scientists and good cooks. Oldways calls itself a think tank, and in the tradition of a think tank, they bring people from many different viewpoints and disciplines into a conversation about good food. Following the essays are the recipes. Wonderful, healthy recipes for delicious dishes, like “Addictive Sweet And Hot Rum Roasted Peanuts” with a recipe from the Peanut Institute, K. Dun Gifford’s “Poached Alaska Halibut with Court Bouillon,” and Barbara Lynch’s “Creamy Vanilla Bread Pudding with Cherry Compote.”
Part nutrition book, part cookbook, The Oldways Table is best consumed slowly. Browse through and read an essay here and there. Learn how to select cheese and wine, how to use Italian specialty meats, or what types of grains are used by different ethnic groups. Try out the recipes. See how delicious healthy eating can be.
Oldways focuses on a “simple triangle: nutrition, tradition and sustainability, with healthy people eating delicious, healthy and wonderful meals in its center.” The organization aims to persuade people that “they can eat well and wisely, with pleasure.” The Oldways Table contributes very well to that effort.
This is one of the most accessible books I’ve seen about sustainable eating. It’s a gentle book that shows the benefits of eating wisely and well, both for ourselves and for the other people we share this planet with. Oldways doesn’t issue a call to return to the “good old” ways of eating and cooking; it keeps us thoroughly present in the modern world. It shows us how to eat well, enjoy the abundance and wonder of good food and care for the planet and our fellow humans at the same time.
The above review was contributed by: Penny Watkins, Free Lance Writer, Mother, Grandmother, and Cat Lady: CLICK HERE to read more of Penny's Reviews.