Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >
May 12, 2008 07:44 PM

Donna Hay recipes- finally used one..sort of.

I don't know if there is anyone else out there like me, but I love Donna Hay cookbooks and magazines. I have purchased them, poured and poured over the photos and recipes.
The photography is outstanding and appeals to all my senses.

However, I wondered if the recipes were any good. I worried that the food was so posed that the recipes might not be that great. I did the same thing with Martha Stewart's recipes. I'm over that now.

So I made a twist on her Asian Carmelized Pork Salad. I used mushrooms and chicken breasts, different herbs, and I messed with the sauce. I sure hope I can do this again because we all LOVED it! I love most that I'm able to use the sauce that I cooked the chicken and mushrooms in, reduced it and used it for a dressing. It was gorgeous and full of layers of flavor. Sweet, tart, salty. spicy, all of it.
What I liked most was her shortcut twist to a could be complicated dish.
All in about 30 minutes.

So. Is there anyone else that has actually tried her recipes?
blurry photo.
this is a little better

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I get given her cook books... a. lot.

    I have used her pecan pie recipe.. and I think, maybe her Korean Beef. Her Basic cookbook is good for, well, the basics!

    I find her to be more of a food stylist than a cook.

    3 Replies
    1. re: purple goddess

      Well that is what I worried about. But I am going to keep trying some more. The idea that she had with this one, was pretty good. But then I did do my own a little bit. I liked the idea.

      1. re: chef chicklet

        but that's what it's all about isn't it??

        Her Basic Book would be a GREAT gift for a young person just starting out in a home kitchen, but to be honest, it was a pretty useless present for me... but my kids gave it to me one Mother's Day, so I love it all the same.

        You know you can call yourself a "foodie" or an "Hound" or whatever name you prefer, when you look at a recipe and think "Hmmm... if I added......." and the result works out!

        And whatever else Donna's mags are, they are certainly SENSATIONAL food porn!!

        1. re: purple goddess

          I was using the Off the shelf, the book on condiments, and all that.
          I adore her photos. I was in an absolute mad frenzy getting dinner on because my dh and son were so hungry, but they loved this and want me to make it again. Her recipe called for star anise, I didn't bother with it, but I can see where it would of been really nice in this dressing.
          Thanks PG, I know you well enough to know, I appreciate your feedback.

          What was nice about this is I make Chinese/Thai etc food. This was delicous and so quick, I couldn't believe that the technique yielded the wonderful flavor. A nice surprise for once!!

    2. I have 2 of her books, Modern Classics, and New Food Fast. I have read through them but as of yet not delved into them. I may have to give them another look.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Candy

        If you do Candy, will you please post the results. I really want to try mpre of her recipes, oh yeah and I really want to be able to plate the food like her too!

      2. Oh, those photos...

        I have "Off the Shelf" and have had pretty good results with most of her recipes. There's a super quick recipe for pork potstickers that has always given me good results. More recently, I tried the recipe for green curry chicken with sweet potato, which turned out fabulous. When the dishes turn out less well, it's mostly just because they're a little bland, not inherently bad. I do admire the simplicity of the recipes and like cooking them when I'm pressed for time. And those pictures!

        1. I am a photograph-my-food junkie (for the blog), The key to getting food good enough for say, Tastespotting, is a matt background (I use a big white x-ray envelope or my walnut table) and simple crockery. I am so weird about it, I actually have my table set in not the most convenient place, but the place that catches the natural light the best. And I have a flood light for darker days. There are plenty of on-line tutorials you can do to learn to take grat food photos. Food Blog S'cool is one off the top of my head.

          1 Reply
          1. re: purple goddess

            Thanks for the ideas. When I have time, that is what I'd like to try. Unfortunately, I'll cook the dinner and everyone is standing there watching and nagging me to hurry. Oh well. I won't be going pro, but it would be fun to try to perfect the food styling if I could.
            I also need a better camera.... I am so wanting a better camera!
            Posting the results on flickr has been so much fun, I think my family is really amazed that I have this other life they knew nothing about. The best part is that I am recording recipes, and the pictures will help my sons if they wish to make the dish when they have their own families.