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Friday, January 16, 2015

Blog Tour: The Recipe Hacker by Diana Keuilian

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Book Description:

Break the recipe code for your favorite foods! Free of grains, gluten, dairy, cane sugar, and soy, The Recipe Hacker is a mouthwatering collection of your favorite comfort foods with a healthy twist. Learn to use easy ingredient substitutions to transform traditional dishes into real, healthy comfort food masterpieces, without sacrificing any of the flavor! Enjoy healthier, whole-food versions of Key Lime Pie, Crispy Orange Chicken, and Banana Pancakes. Dozens of recipes and delicious flavors will keep you coming back for more. Enjoy all the comfort foods you crave and keep your body (and skinny jeans) happy at the same time!

Brianne's Review:

As a fan of Paleo, Whole30, and gluten free recipes, I was super excited to try out Diana Keuilian’s new recipe book The Recipe Hacker. Diana takes everyday comfort foods and puts a healthier twist on them, using real ingredients without dairy, soy, gluten, and refined sugar.

There are a lot of recipes in the book ranging from baked goods to main dishes to sauces, and each one comes with a beautiful colored picture of the finished product. The recipes are easy to follow, though sometimes there are a few specific measurements left out and you have to guess what she intended.

We tried to test at least one recipe from each section and ended up making the orange chicken, cauliflower fried rice, graham cracker crust, sweetened condensed milk, Key Lime pie, and Lazy-man’s Ranch recipes. 

We first tried the orange chicken by the book and made them battered. We found the sauce to be delicious but the battered chicken was gummy and unappetizing. We made the orange chicken a second time, without the batter, and it was a success.

While the “graham cracker” crust in the Key Lime Pie was sweet and tasty, the rest of the pie was a disaster. The coconut cream sweetened condensed milk took twice as long to cook down as the recipe stated and ended up not being very sweet at all. The pie only bakes for 15 minutes and while it looked done, it ended up a gooey mess.

Our hands down favorite recipe that we will be using all the time is her Lazy-Man’s Ranch. The product was a creamy smooth ranch dip/dressing that is my husband’s new favorite. Props to her on making an egg free paleo ranch!

Each recipe post comes with a fun Quick-Tip. Sometimes it is a tip for the recipe, sometimes a motivational blip. You can tell her passion for healthy eating in her writing and it was nice to get a feel of her background. She must have an inside joke on her blog Real Healthy Recipes about putting things in her hair because at least three of her recipes had a suggestion to “put it in your hair” (Lazy Man’s Ranch, Sweetened Condensed Milk, and Caramel Sauce).

One thing to note is that in her Jalapeño Cornbread Skillet recipe, she writes that “corn is a grain that contains gluten.” This is a false statement as corn does not contain any gluten and is used as a replacement in many gluten free diets.

I’d still like to try out a few of her recipes, more of the baked goods (Fluffy Egg white biscuits, Pretzel bites), breakfasts (waffles, cinnamon rolls), and desserts (chocolate cake, zucchini brownies), but they will have to wait until after our Whole30.

About the Author:

Diana Keuilian is passionate about creating wholesome versions of your favorite foods. She removes the gluten, dairy, soy, grains and cane sugar from traditional comfort food recipes like cake, tacos, cookies, waffles, enchiladas and more. This hobby propelled her to start the popular blog, RealHealthyRecipes.com, where she shares hundreds of delicious recipes and mouthwatering photos. She lives in Southern California with her husband and two young children.

For more recipes, or to contact Diana, visit RealHealthyRecipes.com and www.facebook.com/RealHealthyRecipes.