Harper: The Snakes by Sadie Jones

A New Way to Food: 100 Recipes to Encourage a Healthy Relationship with Food, Nourish Your Beautiful Body, and Celebrate Real Wellness for Life

Maggie Battista has tried "every diet or lifestyle plan ever invented... low fat, low carb, mostly grapefruit, and high protein." But finding that none of these cured the "desperately desperate" way she felt about her body, Battista realized that something needed to change in order for her to feel happy in her own skin. And so was born her "new way to food," a style of cooking, eating and thinking designed to reset her relationship with food altogether. Battista documents this way of eating, along with accounts of her own personal journey "from fat girl to mostly well and happy-to-just-be-me lady" in her cookbook of the same name. She's quick to point out that the book is not a diet book, but a collection of advice and suggestions to transform one's eating and one's attitudes.

Many of the dishes here are vegan, like a meatless take on Bolognese sauce and vegan chocolate chip cookies, but Battista doesn't shy away from meat altogether; there are also dishes like Steak au Poivre and Smoky Paella with Fennel. All of the recipes feature fresh, wholesome ingredients and easy-to-follow instructions, and are accompanied by notes on how often a dish might be featured in a meal plan. These recipes sit side-by-side with tips on things like how to think about healthy eating, how to revamp your pantry and your meal-planning routines and how to love yourself. This makes A New Way to Food not only a beautiful exploration of colorful, wonderful foods, but the kind of cookbook packed with enough narrative that readers will want to make time to sit down and read the whole thing cover to cover. --Kerry McHugh, blogger at Entomology of a Bookworm