I’m Just Here for the Food: Version 2.0

I was all set to rant and rave about the book industry taking a page (no pun intended) from the DVD industry by re-releasing this book with minimal upgrades after four short years when one of my friends pointed out this is hardly a new practice. Still, there is something rankling about I’m Just Here for the Food: Version 2.0; the upgrades consist of another 15 recipes, a few refrigerator magnets and a slightly expanded appendix and index. Despite the blatant cash-in nature of the second edition, I still have to recommend it to anyone who doesn’t own the first, particularly people who are new to cooking. Alton Brown, star of the Food Network show Good Eats, writes in a concise and conversational tone, but still manages to explain the science behind cooking without being condescending or needlessly reductive. The book is less of a cookbook and more of an introductory textbook; readers will learn the principles behind all the fundamental cooking techniques from grilling to braising, as well as how to make a good sauce or two. And that, as Alton would say, is good eats.