Pleasures Pure and Simple: And Good for You, Too!


208 pages
Contains Index
ISBN 1-897919-35-4
DDC 641.5





Photos by Patricia Holdsworth
Reviewed by Arlene M. Gryfe

Arlene Gryfe is a Toronto-based professional nutritionist and home


Brita Housez has written two previous cookbooks, both dealing with
healthy eating using soy products as a partial replacement for fat.
Pleasures Pure and Simple does not use soy as its primary ingredient,
but it incorporates many wholesome items such as grains, nuts, seeds,
legumes, vegetables, and fruit. The author has attempted to simplify her
favourite recipes by using fewer ingredients, and shorter, more
efficient preparation without sacrificing flavour or quality.

As expected, chapters include Salads, Vegetables, Seafood, Meats,
Desserts, Breakfast Brunch and Lunch, and Appetizers and Drinks. Recipes
are presented in both imperial and metric measurements, with both
measurements appearing in the same column separated by a slash, making
it difficult to read the amounts. Furthermore, the recipes have not been
tested in metric. This may slightly alter the texture or flavour of some
of the dishes.

Some recipes are accompanied by a tip or brief comment about the health
value of an ingredient, or its historical origin. The book is printed
throughout in brown ink. The eight colour photographs have an eerie
orange tint that makes some foods unrecognizable.

The index closely resembles the table of contents. Individual recipes
are not listed by title or cross-indexed by main ingredient. Instead,
there are main headings (Breads, Biscuits and Muffins; Butters,
Flavoured; Soups, etc.) from which to begin the search.

The recipes are varied, interesting, and generally easy to prepare.
Pleasures Pure and Simple would be useful for new or busy cooks, but it
is not an essential purchase for anyone who already has a modest
cookbook collection.


Housez, Brita., “Pleasures Pure and Simple: And Good for You, Too!,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed May 21, 2024,