Hilah Johnson’s Learn To Cook!
A few days after I had my son, my friend CJ brought a meal over to my house so that I wouldn’t have to do the cooking for a night or two. The dish was amazing – spicy Moroccan meatballs over couscous – and I am pretty sure I consumed the entirety of it (enough to feed a family of four, twice) by myself in under an hour. When I saw her next, I told her how yummy the food was and I praised her for being a such an awesome cook. CJ, who is beautiful, smart and hilarious added modesty to her comely attributes when she responded,
“Nah. I’m not a good cook…I can read.’
This simple concept – that if you can read, you can cook – is the thesis behind Hilah Johnson’s fantastic new eBook, Learn To Cook. Not only is Learn To Cook a comprehensive introduction to the fundamentals of cooking, it’s also funny as shit – which makes it both entertaining (to wit: I read all 227 pages in under two hours because it is awesome and I couldn’t put it down) and extremely useful. Broken down into two sections, Part 1 deals with the terminology of cooking, meal planning, grocery shopping and food preparation – and breaks down the kitchen equipment to the barest essentials needed (did you know that you can cook well with just three items? It’s true). Part 2 contains helpfully categorized recipes, as well as tips on food selection and storage, plus a more thorough explanation of certain cooking techniques.
As a person who owns quite a few cookbooks (see photo below), it’s worth noting that none of them – not even my favorite ones – contain awesome instructional videos that take you step by step through the cooking process. You know which cookbook does? Hilah Johnson’s Learn To Cook does, word! There are many advantages to the eBook format – convenience, accessibility, being super-easy to navigate – but I have to say that being able to link to Hilah’s videos are the icing on the cake. A lot of cookbooks provide photos of the finished recipe, which – while often pretty – don’t provide much assistance when it comes down to actual cooking. The better ones feature step-by-step illustrations to assist you through the process, but I find that having the additional visual aid of a video to be extremely helpful. A good writer can describe what carmalized onions should look like, but nothing is as good as actually seeing it for yourself.
Finally, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that the recipes found in Learn To Cook are really, REALLYREALLY delicious. I’ve been cooking food from Hilah’s webseries for over a year now and every single dish I’ve made has been awesome. While the focus is on fresh, seasonal ingredients, Hilah’s repertoire of cuisine also includes canned, frozen and jarred items – resulting in tasty, healthy food that can be made on a small budget.
Learn To Cook provides an veritable boatload of information about the basics of cooking that everyone – from the inexperienced noob who doesn’t know how to boil water, to the 38 year old mother of two with 18 years of cooking under her belt (who before yesterday afternoon didn’t know the best way to select a really good pineapple. I’m totally talking about myself here. I also didn’t know how to butterfly a chicken before Hilah’s eBook taught me) – can learn from. Learn To Cook is nothing short of awesome – do yourself a favor and snag a copy for yourself and your loved ones (you don’t want them to starve), everyone should know how to cook!
You can purchase Hilah Johnson’s Learn To Cook here (I highly recommend getting the Super Rad Deluxe Video Edition – you get 10 bonus video links, which are not only informative but you also get to see more of Hilah – who is made of Magic and Whiskey and The Best Peach Cobbler I’ve Ever Tasted) and here to download Hilah’s first cookbook, The Breakfast Taco Book! YUM!