Cookbook Review: Be Your Own Chef

Onion & Mushroom Stuffed Chicken

Cooking is an art form. It’s not black and white. Be Your Own Chef provides a unique and fun spin on cooking from a cookbook. It inspires you to be creative with each recipe and cook to your own taste. You are the chef!

Karen Blake Peek

Be Your Own Chef is a great cookbook written by Karen Blake Peek. It’s not only a collection of recipes, it is meant to inspire you to experiment with your food and turn simple meal preparation into an art form. What is unique for this cookbook is that each recipe contains a table of alternatives to the most of the ingredients used as well as all kinds of those cooking tips that will make your life so much easier :)

I’ve prepared a couple of dishes so far and I’m sharing two recipes with you, just to show you how great this cookbook is. I’ve learned a new way to coat the meat. In Serbia, we first coat meat in flour, than egg, and finally the breadcrumbs. Then, fry everything in a lots of oil. This recipe gives a way healthier alternative as it’s coated in oats and then baked in the oven.

Onion & Mushroom Stuffed Chicken

60 g oats
2 green onions
1 small onion, diced
120 g mushrooms, sliced
1 Tbsp olive oil
60 g Gruyere cheese
Dijon mustard
2 whole boneless, skinless chicken breasts (meaning you have 4 halves of chicken breasts)
ground black pepper

Process oats and green onions in a blender to make the crumbs. Place in a shallow dish.

Saute mushrooms and onion on olive oil until tender, then season with salt and pepper to taste. Add grated cheese to mushrooms and onion. Cut a vertical hole down from the top center of the thickest part of each chicken breast, careful not to cut a hole through the bottom. Carefully expand the hole with fingers.

Stuff each chicken breast with cheese, mushrooms, and onion mixture. Close with toothpicks. Rub chicken with salt and pepper. Spread some mustard all over them, then coat in previously prepared oats and spring onions crumbs. Spray both sides of each chicken breast with cooking spray and lay in a baking dish.

Bake in a preheated oven on 180°C/350°F for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown.

Egg Salad

Egg Salad

8 boiled eggs, diced
2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp paprika
1 small onion, diced
2 Tbsp chives, chopped
about 4 Tbsp yogurt
ground black pepper

Line strainer with cheese cloth and place over bowl. Pour yogurt in to drain water and thicken for 15-20 minutes.

In a bowl combine eggs, strained yogurt, mustard, paprika, onion, chives, salt and pepper. Mix thoroughly. Cover and keep in a fridge.

Serve on a slice of toasted bread. Or in a lettuce cup. Or as a side with your main dish… It really goes well with everything :)

Cookbook Give-Away

Be Your Own Chef Cover

In a collaborative effort both Correen, from FoodLoversWebsite and I are sharing our cookbook reviews of Be Your Own Chef. The author, Karen Peek, has generously given us a copy (PDF format) to give-away too! It’s easy to enter, here is the scoop…

Cookbook Give-Away

Simply leave a comment (automatically enters you)

Give-away Info…
– Cookbook give-away is open today 07/11/2011 until midnight PST on 07/19/2011
– Enter just once per e-mail address…thanks
– If you have a valid e-mail address you can enter (needed to send your PDF copy if you are the winner)
– Both Correen and I are giving away a cookbook – so visit both our sites, leave a comment and it gives you two chances to win ;)
– Winner will be picked with the true random number generator over at