A producer took note of her social media prowess and booked her on the Today show as a cooking guest. Now she has a regular gig hosting #Cooking on the show’s digital channel, and a beautiful cookbook that captures her people-pleasing personality and wholesome recipes.
Though many are vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free, she prefers to forgo the labels and instead focus on the bold flavors and easy-going preparations that should appeal to anyone regardless of dietary needs. Spaghetti Aglio e Olio 2.0 — the Italian classic tossed with charred cauliflower and garlicky sauteed kale —needed no animal product to make me happy. Nor did Quinoa Masala Pulao fortified with green peas and chunks of sweet potato, or Fattoush Salad with Sourdough Za’atar Croutons.
Not surprisingly, the heftiest part of the book is devoted to the mostly gluten-free sweet treats that made her the star of the office. Salted Peanut Butter Caramel Bars, Chewy Lemon Coconut Bites, and Churro Pancake Truffles look and sound way too decadent to be healthy. But I’m ready to be convinced otherwise.
Susan Puckett is a cookbook author and former food editor of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Follow her at susanpuckett.com.
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