The Photo Cookbook – Deliciously Easy Cooking

As we move to more and more things becoming digital, it’s not surprising that we can now have cookbooks as eBooks and even as apps on our Macs. And thanks to integrated technologies cooking apps don’t have to simply hold a recipe, but can include detailed photos of ingredients and step-by-step tutorials.

The Photo Cookbook makes it deliciously easy, to fix any kind of dish and it does so with beautiful images and easy to follow instructions. Learn after the break how this app can bring you on your way to be the chef in your kitchen.

Choosing is the Hardest Part

As the headline implies, selecting a dish to prepare will probably be the hardest part in the entire cooking process. There are oodles of recipes and they are presented in an easy-to-grasp grid.

First you should notice the four buttons on top, which will let you select a certain cooking style. Each style in turn holds four categories of dishes with about 15 recipes each (which will equal out to 240 recipes in total – that will keep you busy for some time).

Pick one of the approximately 240 dishes

Pick one of the approximately 240 dishes

Leveraging the features of OSX Lion, there is no scrollbar at the side, but simply move your cursor over a column and make the scrolling gesture and even more recipes will be revealed to you. If you prefer to see them all at once, you can make a sidebar viewable which holds all available recipes of a given category.

Beautiful scrollable grid view

Beautiful scrollable grid view

Sidebar for quick access

Sidebar for quick access

Getting to Know Your Ingredients

When you’ve chosen a recipe and click on it, you’re presented with a gorgeous overview of all the ingredients, beautifully arranged and in the state you’d use them for your dish. Everything is also listed, ready for your shopping list (I’ll come back to that in a minute).

If you’re unsure as to what image is what exactly or how to prepare an ingredient properly for the dish, simply hover of the image and click on the tiny icon that appears on it. You’ll get a beautiful explanation.

All ingredients listed and pictured

All ingredients listed and pictured

Learn more about each ingredient

Learn more about each ingredient

Now, you have all the ingredients within the app, but if you don’t happen to own the mobile version of The Photo Cookbook (for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch), it would be quite cumbersome to write down everything.

Of course, the developers being my German countrymen, they have been meticulous and thought of a very easy way to have everything at your fingertips: simply hit that email button on the upper right and the entire list of ingredients can be mailed and taken with you (or printed, if you prefer that).

Email the ingredient list

Email the ingredient list

Cooking Like a Chef

Once you’ve got everything ready to roll, simply start. First of all, you prepare each ingredient as needed – chopping veggies, slicing meat, or mixing spices. As mentioned above, everything is explained in pop up boxes if you hover over an ingredient.

After that it is as simple as following the steps in the numbered images included in each recipe. The instructions are to the point and the accompanying image shows you how your food should look like by now. And that’s pretty much everything

Easy to follow steps

Easy to follow steps

Areas of Improvement & Verdict

The Photo Cookbook is a joy to use and look at. The high quality photographs of the dishes, ingredients and cooking instructions just instill the urge to pick up a cooking spoon and start – it doesn’t even matter what dish you pick.

Due to the way the recipes are presented, it is understandable that you cannot add any recipes of your own, so if you’re looking for an app to do that, The Photo Cookbook isn’t the way to go. Even though, I hope that down the line the developers will offer some sort up updates or enhancements with extra sets of recipes (being German, I really hope for some traditional dishes from my home country).

Another thing to remember is that The Photo Cookbook for Mac does require you to have a Mac in the vicinity of your kitchen. Unfortunately, you can’t print out an entire recipe (except using screenshots), so you need your Mac around to follow the steps.

This is, in my eyes, a small disadvantage if looked at the overall picture. The Photo Cookbook is exactly what it promises to be – a wealth of recipes for the ones who love to cook or who want to learn how and it presents its content beautifully. So if you’re aspiring to be the adored chef in your dorm or your house or if you want to impress someone – look no further. Happy cooking!


Summary

The Photo Cookbook is virtual cookbook with a wealth of recipes and includes gorgeous visual guides to fix any of the included dishes.

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  • noko

    Just asian and italian? What about latin food, specially mexican.

  • David Smith

    I guess I’m waiting to be able to connect my digital scale and thermometer to my phone and have the cookbook say “that’s more turmeric than we suggest – don’t you want to take a bit off” or “Hey, David, the roast is almost done – maybe a few more minutes if you really want it medium rare.”

    To be realistic, I should probably also have a USB smoke detector!

  • Sebastiaan

    Yeah… uhm i can see a couple of these apps work for iOS (specifically on the iPad) but i can’t imagine people using their Macbook in the kitchen to figure out how a certain recipe should be executed. Doesn’t make any sense to me.

    Oh and i’m with David on this one. Though i’d probably get myself a USB hand too, you know.. to hold my hand the entire time…

  • Pingback: Обзор The Photo Cookbook — красочная книга рецептов для Mac (видео + раздача Redeem)

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