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My frau friend gave me Oprah's cookbook non-ironically

I brought it upon myself by admiring two things she had cooked that, it turned out, were from the cookbook. It's called "Food, Health and Happiness" and is about 5 years old. I thought about returning it or pitching it but decided to de-Oprahify it by putting white contact paper over her picture on the cover and gluing or taping together the pages at the beginning of each chapter that are laden with her pictures and anecdotes. That leaves just the recipes, which aren't bad except for the chapter with her low-cal Weight Watcher versions of comfort food. (Just eat the mashed potatoes and fried chicken, bitch. The clue is not to overeat them.)

I looked the book up on Amazon and it greatly upset her frau following because it had too many fur-rein recipes, no use of canned or convenience ingredients, too many steps and it included "expensive" ingredients like truffle oil and monkfish. They wanted the Pioneer Woman or Paula Deen's diet cookbook and they got Oprah's attempt at being Ina Garten.

One of her Amazon fans cautions the following: "Some of the things you need to make the recipes include a pasta roller, pastry bag, high speed blender, microplane, Kitchen aid mixer, cast iron skillet, splatter guard (for tomato sauce), food processor (7-cup) and whisk for salad dressings...

The ingredients you might have to order include lavender flowers, anchovy paste, truffle zest, Old Bay seasoning, red curry paste, Thai fish sauce, tamarind concentrate, curry leaves, mascarpone cheese, star anise, oat flour, xanthan gum, truffle flour, fresh truffles, and sea salt."

I don't find any of these things remarkable except for the edible flowers. My local grocery doesn't have all of them but Amazon does. I'm also not making fresh pasta because I know lazy ass Oprah never has.

Some questions for your consideration: Why would Oprah want to do a cookbook to remind at least half of her fan base how rich and sophisticated she is and what lazy rubes they are? Who is Oprah's fanbase and where do they align demographically?

Bearding note: In the forward, her final dedication is to Stedman, who she says tells her whenever she makes dinner that it's the best she's ever made. Oprah doesn't realize he's actually saying her previous dinner was shit. Who believes any of this, anyway?

by Anonymousreply 38March 30, 2023 8:43 AM

Stop calling women fraus! Fag

by Anonymousreply 1March 26, 2023 12:53 AM

“I’m a poor person, we only eat Stouffer's at holidays!” 🤡

by Anonymousreply 2March 26, 2023 12:55 AM

I think you're being overly dramatic about this. If you don't want the book, return it. I'm sure it was expensive. Someone was nice enough to cook for you, remember a preference that you had, then try to give you a gift that catered to your preference. All you can do is call her a frau and talk about putting contact paper on the first couple of pages. Ridiculous.

by Anonymousreply 3March 26, 2023 12:58 AM

No thx plus Oprah is a lousy cook and doesn’t use any recipes. Her recipe staff at O Magazine drummed up the book.

by Anonymousreply 4March 26, 2023 1:00 AM

Is there a chapter on BREAD?

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by Anonymousreply 5March 26, 2023 1:03 AM

From another review: "If you like fancy ingredients and large grocery bills, and enjoy using your food processor, this book is for you. Also note that after all the expense and effort, the recipes make enough to serve 2-4 people, so you actually have to double or triple the amounts to actually feed anybody."

by Anonymousreply 6March 26, 2023 1:23 AM

Haha great post OP!

by Anonymousreply 7March 26, 2023 1:44 AM

Oprah fans don't own whisks or know where to get Old Bay seasoning?

by Anonymousreply 8March 26, 2023 1:52 AM

I'm usually not one for burning books, but....

by Anonymousreply 9March 26, 2023 1:55 AM

This is hilarious, OP, thanks.

Oprah doesn't even do stairs, I seriously doubt she ever cooks. The recipes are likely by her servants.

by Anonymousreply 10March 26, 2023 2:03 AM

I successfully de-Oprahcized my cookbook by careful use of double-sided tape. No homespun wisdom, no staged photos of Oprah picking veggies at her estate or looking lovingly into Stedman's eyes or doing galpal stuff with Gayle or issuing fake accounts of her weight struggles which are supposedly over. (Please. We know you eat cans of frosting in your bedroom.) The chefs who contributed to the cookbook are listed. Not one is Black. I just thought about all the phony experts she's given a platform to over the years, and thought "I just can't with this woman." It's a nice cookbook, which I am happy to use and plan to keep my friend updated on what I make using her thoughtful gift.

by Anonymousreply 11March 29, 2023 9:38 PM

A WHISK? Clearly Oprah is a monster.

by Anonymousreply 12March 29, 2023 9:48 PM

What's in her mashed potato recipe? I ask because back in the 80's my Mom raved about "Oprah's Mashed Potatoes" at the Pump Room in Chicago. She thought they were incredible and asked what the secret was.

The answer was, "Just about everything in the dairy case" - butter, cream cheese, sour cream, and heavy cream along with some potatoes.

by Anonymousreply 13March 29, 2023 10:20 PM

The next cookbook by Opera (what an Amazon reviewer called her) should have more middle-brow recipes such as this:

10 whole chicken nuggets marinated in Wish-Bone Italian dressing cooked on a George Forman grill and served with Funyions on a TV table.

by Anonymousreply 14March 29, 2023 11:59 PM

Is it that "Cooking in the Kitchen with Rosie" book?

by Anonymousreply 15March 30, 2023 12:06 AM

This thread is the epitome of pointless bitchery. Datalounge, you never disappoint. Well, hardly ever.

OP, you are being ridiculous, as are most of the commenters in this thread. It's just a book. If you like a lot of the recipes, keep it. If you like only a couple of them, tear out those pages and toss the book to save space.

Mocking a friend for the gift she gave you, no doubt with fondness and good will is nasty and mean-spirited. You are an awful person, but also funny. You fit right in.

by Anonymousreply 16March 30, 2023 12:07 AM

No, it's the successor to "Cooking with Rosie," although it's a few years old so it's probably deeply discounted.

I could not have used the book with the gospel of wonderful Oprah introducing every chapter. You do you.

by Anonymousreply 17March 30, 2023 2:09 AM

My Frau friend once gave me [italic] In the Kitchen with Rosie [/italic]. There were quite a few good recipes. My frau knows I like cookbooks, and picked one up for me when she sought one out for herself. Nothing was TOO fancy in that one. I haven't seen any of the recipes in this latest one, so I can't say whether it's too over the top or not.

by Anonymousreply 18March 30, 2023 2:32 AM

It isn't over the top at all but it does require a similar level of experience, income and curiosity as the recipes from Ina Garten's shows and the Epicurious site.

Here's her recipe for Miso-glazed cod from the Williams Sonoma site. It comes after the bilge I edited out with double-sided tape.

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by Anonymousreply 19March 30, 2023 2:59 AM

Here's the Kale and Farro soup.

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by Anonymousreply 20March 30, 2023 3:01 AM

Here's the brined and roasted chicken.

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by Anonymousreply 21March 30, 2023 3:02 AM

Here's her vegetarian pumpkin curry.

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by Anonymousreply 22March 30, 2023 3:04 AM

Here's the skinny cornbread and I am done.

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by Anonymousreply 23March 30, 2023 3:05 AM

One more-- her spicy chili

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by Anonymousreply 24March 30, 2023 3:07 AM

Her unfried chicken

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by Anonymousreply 25March 30, 2023 3:10 AM

OP Much of it sounds great, and I marinate salmon, trout, and bluefish in Miso, garlic, soy, and ginger... I just find those flavours to he overkill for Cod, or any lightly-flavoured whitefish. I think it's better with oily fish. I usually brine my chicken if I'm roasting Jewish here, snd though I do not keep Kosher; I like the Koshering process of chicken), and J'adore Faro as well!

Not too keen on the bloody kale, but could probably handle it braised in that soup... though I'd probably sub escarole or a different green.

I think you're quite right: it's on par with Ina-style cookery... perhaps better? I think upper-middle class, white, average, mature frau is Oprah's demographic, so she doesn't need to have any shame really. I don't make fancy dishes every night, but I enjoy cooking like this, and I don't feel guilty about liking any of this. I love truffles, and truffle oils as well, despite the decadence.

Thanks for the additional posts.

by Anonymousreply 26March 30, 2023 3:37 AM

Thanks for your points about the cob, r18. I was thinking of trying that. I've made miso soup but have never really cooked with it as a glaze or baked good ingredient. Your insights are very helpful.

The Halibut a la Greque is challenging, not simply because Halibut is 34 a lb. It calls for English peas and French breakfast radishes, both of which I assume are Farmer's market items. My Whole Foods is rarely that fancy and I live in a major city.. The artichokes are doable but seasonal, too. I don't know how this appears in the book but this should have been listed as a seasonal recipe with subs for the fish, peas and radishes. I can see why readers would get pissed off.

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by Anonymousreply 27March 30, 2023 3:50 AM

I meant cod.

by Anonymousreply 28March 30, 2023 3:51 AM

The index has only one entry: Carbs.

by Anonymousreply 29March 30, 2023 3:58 AM

R27 I like small radish thinly sliced on a buttered baguette... it's a typical French old-school skinny lady breakfast. I've never noticed any radishes for sake in the States labelled or marketed as "breakfast radishes" however! I think the smaller ones picked at a certain time may he sweeter. Some of this is rather funny I suppose. It's more foreign than pretentious if you're adventurous, and not working class I should think.

Vegetables à la Greque I like. You can store the liquid in the fridge and re-use for various things. It lasts for a several days. They were quite popular back in the70s in "fancy" French salads. My mum was a cook by trade, so I'm probably not put off by all the prep.

by Anonymousreply 30March 30, 2023 4:07 AM

Well, it’s a good thing to know your audience. Oprah’s fans are not gourmet cooks, they’re house fraus looking for a simple recipe for low cost meals for families. They are basically the same type of women that ate up simple everyday cookbooks in the fifties and sixties. Stuff like Peg Bracken’s I Hate to Cook Book. They are not looking to delicately prepare the exotic ingredients or whatever. They’re just looking for a good Mac and cheese or casserole recipe to feed the rug rats and hubster.

Oprah is way out of touch with the audience that made her rich now, she needs to stop while she’s ahead.

by Anonymousreply 31March 30, 2023 4:24 AM

R31 It's aspirational cooking for many, yet I suppose they may enjoy the challenge. This is how Oprah likes to eat. (and Stedman, and Reece Witherspoon, et.al) I don't think she wrote the book for those looking for "struggle meals". The demographic of her magazine readership are rich. They can certainly afford these dishes.

She's a Billionaire, so not surprising she's acquired somewhat of a sophisticated palate. Does Oprah really owe anyone a struggle-meal cookbook? That would be inauthentic of her, I should think. Reece is worth over 480MM herself, so of course those friends she enjoys cooking for are super-rich as well. She kept it real with the Chili, the Cornbread, and the Oven-Fried Chicken though... That's my take.

by Anonymousreply 32March 30, 2023 4:35 AM

I think this indicates Oprah has the same relatability problem as Ellen DeGeneres. She did the cookbook to promote her interest in WW, but she's not a cook so she ran into a problem. She should have divided the book into weeknight and weekend cooking and used a system to denote high cost and more time-consuming recipes along with grouping recipes by points for WW followers.

by Anonymousreply 33March 30, 2023 5:27 AM

R32, plain American food isn’t a “struggle meal.” Plenty of California cuisine or simple ethnic foods can be made with ingredients you can easily find in your kitchen or at Walmart. You don’t have to be poor or deprived to want meals you can cook with what’s in your house, or without making a special trip for gourmet ingredients.

Keep in mind most of Oprah’s fans have or had kids that need feeding every night. Most people don’t have the time and energy to prepare exceptional meals every night. And most cookbooks have a special occasion or desert section for when you have more time. A lot of girls were never taught to cook by their working mothers, so it’s follow a cookbook or eat at McDonalds.

Oprah has become really pretentious, and her followers didn’t admire her for being an out of touch, pretentious billionaire, they thought of her as a regular person. Oprah has forgotten that.

I have a female relative who was in exactly her demographic and a big fan. She’s now in her fifties, kids are gone, and she’s not preparing gourmet meals and never did. When they were younger, she made plain kids’ food that kids would eat using her limited cooking skills. Trying to get a kid to eat unusual food is hard.

Somebody like that isn’t looking to burn down the world with their culinary brilliance, they just want to shove some vegetables down their kids’ gullets. People like her looked up to Oprah as a sort of lifestyle expert, they wanted to emulate her because they thought she had it together. Now she’s just a rich lady with a cook on staff, they can’t relate to that. Oprah has never, ever, been a lifestyle expert for the wealthy and privileged.

by Anonymousreply 34March 30, 2023 6:48 AM

R34 I think you're taking it way too seriously, as it is a oersonal grudge here. The frickin' cookbook was written over five years ago... and there are simple meals she included. Faro has always been an ancient peasant food. It's a fairly cheap soup to make really. And does every last American need to shop at Walmart?

This was the richest woman in the world at one time, or second. So she liked a few flourishes with a throwback to classic French cuisine... big deal. I'm jot an American, so I think French is normal, as you think "Californian" is natural. Different people, different upbringing. Oprah is different to most people, or all of us.

I don't think you actually understand her fans, or subscribers actually... after so many decades of her "extravagant favourite things", any former fans so middle-class who might he offended or put-off by some French-inspired food in a bloody cookbook would've been turned off by her long ago, don't you think? Every frau I know who has continued to live Oprah are fairly soohisticated older women... not young mums on a scant budget. This isn't the realityof the situation. Those who are skint can find those other recipes for free on YouTube,Reels, Tik Tok, etc. Old rich white women purchase the fancy cookbooks in 2023, or in 2017 when she published this.

by Anonymousreply 35March 30, 2023 7:34 AM

Cooking food from elaborate recipes is amazing. But most of the time (when I'm done with the stupidity of others and the daily demands of life) I'm content with just cooking from my Taste of Home cookbooks.

I have both volumes of Mastering The Art of French Cooking but there are only two recipes from volume one that I utilize on a frequent basis. The recipes for scrambled eggs and cherry clafoutis.

by Anonymousreply 36March 30, 2023 7:54 AM

R36 French classics can be very easy and simple like the Clafoutis... a novice in the kitchen can make them... after watching someone do it once. That is how I learnt these simple things. I made a peach Clafoutis yesterday, with a little Apricot jam.

I think one or two posters in this thread are delusional about exactly who Oprah's real fans are today, years after she went off the air with her TV programme. It seems a bit silly to me. The ones paying for the O magazine subscription, and buying the cookbooks are not who this poster (or two) believe they are.

by Anonymousreply 37March 30, 2023 8:15 AM

Laura of GoodReads didn't explain why she only gave it three stars, but she was probably mad that the paper didn't have a mute button.

[quote]Really nice paper, sounds like Opera.

by Anonymousreply 38March 30, 2023 8:43 AM
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