Welcome to The Pioneer Girl Cookbook Membership! This month, we’re that includes Jen Hatmaker, the hilarious best-selling creator, inspirational speaker, and host of For the Love podcast (the place she’s even interviewed our very personal Ree Drummond!). Out now together with her debut cookbook, Feed These Individuals: Slam-Dunk Recipes for Your Crew, Jen reveals us how she went from a clueless prepare dinner to a cookbook creator, her number-one tip for increasing a choosy kid’s palate, and her mouthwatering recipe for no-fuss loaded grilled cheese!
Many cookbook authors profess to be for the on a regular basis prepare dinner, guaranteeing helpful recipes you may throw collectively for a simple dinner. With Feed These Individuals, Jen Hatmaker has written the uncommon cookbook that really fulfills that promise.
Jen just isn’t a elaborate chef. She’s not a chef in any respect, in keeping with the introduction of her cookbook. She didn’t develop up in a family filled with cooks and, till her youngsters have been born, she did not even know the place to seek out ginger or garlic within the grocery retailer. As a substitute, she grew up in Kansas within the ’80s with frozen hen patties and Veg-all. Once they needed to be adventurous, her household would put Arby’s Horsey Sauce on a roast beef sandwich. “I did not develop up with any cooking abilities in any respect, nor did I get married with any abilities. I used to be a culinary tragedy,” Jen says.
Flash ahead to as we speak, and Jen has discovered a factor or two about cooking. Not solely does she know precisely what to do with a leek, however she additionally repeatedly makes use of curry paste and drowns herself in jalapeños. And now, the beloved motivational author has additionally collected a Rolodex of household meal concepts into one hilarious, irreverent e-book: Feed These Individuals.
However Jen’s culinary transformation did not occur in a single day. As with many individuals, she determined to discover ways to prepare dinner for the only real function of feeding the gaggle of little youngsters demanding dinner seven nights every week. It started in a really clunky, rudimentary means with one million missteps. She seemed to the Meals Community as her culinary faculty, and her research guides have been the most recent cookbooks to hit the cabinets. She aimed for one new recipe every week and made certain to strive that recipe greater than as soon as. The entire journey was a studying curve for everybody—together with her youngsters. “I channeled the mothers from the ’70s and ’80s who have been like, ‘you are gonna eat this, otherwise you’re gonna eat it tomorrow morning for breakfast!'”
In 2020, Feed These Individuals had its tentative title however virtually died within the water after Jen misplaced her 26-year marriage. “I simply thought every thing was ruined. Feed These Individuals, for me, meant my household,” explains Jen. Her complete workforce rallied and reminded her that she nonetheless had loads of folks she fed each day, together with her youngsters. “Scripting this e-book, I had an opportunity to re-evaluate what meals meant to me,” Jen says. “The connection between meals and household is every thing. It is all of it—the start, center, and the tip of the story.”
Feed These Individuals does not comply with many protocols, and it is most likely exterior most cookbook norms. It is a e-book for normal cooks, like Jen, to feed the folks they love. “I am only a regular one that stands in her kitchen and cooks for the individuals who reside right here,” she says.
Her strategy: Use easy elements to create zero-fuss, low-stakes recipes that her household (and hopefully yours) will get pleasure from. From Southern consolation classics to Vietnamese-inspired grilled pork bahn mi, she continually asks herself how one can get extra taste, spice, crunch, and layers into any recipe.
For example, a easy grilled cheese in Jen Hatmaker’s arms veers into an explosion of taste with layers of potato chips, bacon, raspberry jam, and gruyère cheese. “I can solely guess that this recipe got here out of a fever dream,” Jen jokes. “I imply, what kind of sociopath places this in a cookbook?” The recipe is situated in a bit referred to as “Meals for Your Choosy Partner or Spawn” (we child you not!) and it’s all about combining crispy, gooey, buttery, and crunchy.