Last year I gutted our cookbook collection of ones I haven’t cracked open since college. We had no need to know how to make a jell-o mold or cook an entire meal using a microwave. Most of the books were from the 70’s and 80’s and were outdated. I resolved to keep our cookbook collection relevant to us keeping by only keeping the ones we turned to often. This included our favorites like our slow-cooker cookbook, our Chinese take-out cookbook, and our Star Wars cookbook. We have others, I promise. Our collection was small but unique so when a friend gifted us Thug Kitchen: Eat Like You Give a Fuck it was a welcome, one-of-a-kind addition. Brace yourself for a review of this curse-tastic book!
This book is striking to look at. The matte black background makes the colorful food on the cover pop. It even feels nice to touch with the glossy title and the smoothness of the matte background. I know that might be a little weird to mention but it’s different than the other books I have. It’s really pleasant to the touch.
I don’t know about you but the first thing I do with a new cookbook is flip through the pages and oogle the pictures of food. I like having a visual of what I’m cooking and even a few images of the steps so I know that I’m doing it right is a bonus. Thug Kitchen does not disappoint and the images look tasty. Not every recipe has an image to accompany it but I think we know what potato salad looks like.
Aesthetics are everything! 5/5
There is one thing that I wish I did more and it’s read the introductions to cookbooks. If they’re anywhere as entertaining as the one in Thug Kitchen, then they’re my new favorite thing. Admittedly I didn’t read the entire introduction but do plan on going back and reading it. I enjoyed what I read and it pumped me up to start cooking. I was genuinely excited to explore it’s recipes. How many cookbooks can you say that about?
One thing I really like about Thug Kitchen is that it’s plant based. My husband and I wanted to incorporate more veggies into our meals and were getting tired of the same old steamed or roasted broccoli. This cookbook is the perfect answer to that. We’ve made a handful of recipes so far and have been pleased with each of them. If you’re just jonesing for that piece of chicken, I can tell it’d be easy to incorporate that into a lot of these recipes.
Did I mention there’s swearing? It’s given away in the title: Thug Kitchen: Eat Like You Give a Fuck. I like it. It doesn’t take away from the professionalism or the quality of the recipes one bit. In fact, it makes the cookbook easy to relate to, significantly more down to Earth, and it feels honest. That combined with it’s easy to read/follow directions and no crazy ingredients (it even offers substitutions that are easy to find) makes this cookbook a solid win.
It doesn’t fuck around with its purpose. 5/5
What We’ve Made
The first thing you should know about our cooking style is that we cook on Sunday for the week. We make three different meals, portion them out, and eat them as leftovers during the week. A lot of recipes are not designed for this, we know that, but it’s something to note here since we didn’t eat many of these fresh. Below is what we’ve made so far, in no particular order, and some notes we had on them.
- Basic Thug Kitchen vinaigrette. There’s a nice selection of salad dressings you can make to go along with your “plant nachos” and I made the vinaigrette. I already had everything on the ingredient list and the directions were easy to follow. Most importantly it turned out super tasty and made my salad better. Just make sure you have a mint handy because the onion is strong with this one.
- Baked zucchini chips. Definitely not the best left over. I don’t think we cut them right because they weren’t very chip-like but the flavor was still good. We need to try this again because I love the idea.
- Black bean tortas with coconut chipotle mayo. Watch out for that chipotle mayo because it is not messing around. It’s flavorful but spicy. We enjoyed these tortas despite me basically puree-ing the black bean mix. I didn’t want to mash them per the directions and decided the immersion blender was a better choice. No it was not. You definitely want the beans chunky because they’re easier to get on the roll and will be more substantial in the sandwich. Ours were a little too liquid and were more of a smear than what it should have been. Still tasted good though.
- Sweet corn and green chile baked flautas. This was the first recipe we made because flautas are simple and easy to make. I love flautas because they’re basically rolled up tacos. How can you argue with that? These were amazing but we didn’t have them with salsa or guac which would have made them even better. Next time there will be guac!
- 5-spice fried rice with sweet potatoes. The best fried rice I’ve ever had. We normally don’t wait a day for the rice but the directions said to and a co-worker said it’d be better. Going forward we will always do this because it truly does make a difference. The recipe called for 1 cup bitter greens which we normally don’t eat and were like “what the hell is a bitter green?” Because this cookbook is awesome it gave us some suggestions and we ended up using mustard greens. Neither of us had ever had mustard greens so we were skeptical but in Thug Kitchen we trust so in they went! So. Tasty. Especially with the sweet potatoes. Yum!
- Whole wheat banana pancakes. I didn’t make these with whole wheat flour but they still came out delicious. It might be because there isn’t any egg in the batter but my pancakes came out a little on the thing side. The flavor was there and they make for a damn good breakfast. So you may eat six instead three. Who cares. I didn’t even put syrup on mine because I thought the sweetness from the bananas was enough. My husband put his spicy syrup on his and agreed that they were delicious. Oh, and the title of the breakfast chapter is “carpe fucking diem”. So much yes.
Taste is numero uno. 5/5
Chill the Fuck Out Sir Mix-A-Lot
We turn to the Internet for a lot of things in our lives, recipes included. It’s nice to disconnect yourself and have a physical book that looks and feels nice, and provides you with tasty meals. The bonus is that Thug Kitchen is also fun to read. For example, “chill the fuck out sir mix-a-lot” is a quote from the whole wheat banana pancakes that follows a warning that mixing the batter too much will make your pancakes tough.
Every time I’ve had to mix ingredients since that recipe I’ve remembered that quote despite knowing that over-mixing equals batter death. I can imagine a beginner cook remembering quotes like this too. It might be a silly one-liner but it’s very helpful!
If you couldn’t tell I think this book is great and I would definitely recommend it. I like having this cookbook in our collection and the conversations I know it’ll spark in the future. I’m definitely looking forward to making more meals from Thug Kitchen in the future. I’ll probably post pictures of the food too so follow me on Instagram (cher.squared) to see all the tasty results!
Thug Kitchen‘s recipes include cursing and easy to follow instructions that produce damn tasty food. It’s some good shit.
Totally awesome! 5/5