Ina Garten’s ‘Cooking for Jeffrey’ Proves Food Is Love [REVIEW]


Ina Garten’s Cooking for Jeffrey is her most personal collection of recipes yet. (Photo by Jathan Fink, Jadeworks Entertainment)

Food is love. It’s something Heather and I have said for years, because we both love to spoil the people we care about with phenomenal meals. Obviously, we’re not alone when it comes to that sentiment. That’s why Ina Garten’s latest cookbook, Cooking for Jeffrey, features all the recipes her doting hubby loves most, and now she’s sharing them with the rest of us. 

Ina Garten and her husband Jeffrey

Ina Garten says her career wouldn’t have been possible without the support of her husband, Jeffrey. (Photo by Quentin Bacon)

In her intro to this volume, Ina attributes her success as one of America’s premiere culinary experts to the encouragement she received from her spouse. “He’s the reason I love to cook and also the person who continually encourages me to do what I love,” she says. “Cooking…says “you’re important enough to me to spend the time and effort to cook for you.” Aww, we’re getting a case of the feels already! But that’s what makes this book so special. Ina pulls back the curtain on her life and shares personal anecdotes throughout the book, and that’s why this tome is so personal, because it offers us a rare insight not only into her kitchen, but also into the heart of her marriage.

This book, however, is also the kind of step-by-step guidebook her fans have come to expect. As with each of her previous bestselling cookbooks, the Barefoot Contessa only offers up her best. From cocktails like Limoncello Vodka Collins (a wonderful spiked lemonade) and hors d’oeuvres likes Herbed Fromage Blanc (a decadent fresh cheese dip that transports us to France) to desserts like Pecan Rum Raisin Ice Cream (the Contessa seems to like her liquor), everything is over-the-top delicious, yet never all that difficult to prepare.

Ina Garten and her husband Jeffrey on their wedding day

A dynamic duo, Ina Garten and her husband Jeffrey cut the cake on their wedding day.
(Photo courtesy Ina Garten)

Some of our other favorites here include her brunch-worthy Zucchini and Leek Frittata, her French-inspired Filet Mignon with Mustard and Mushrooms, and one of the first things she ever made for Jeffrey, Ina’s Challah with Saffron, which puts her own twist on the traditional Jewish egg bread.

Anyone who has ever watched Ina’s TV show knows, she loves cooking up something sweet to polish off the perfect dinner. That’s why concoctions like her Raspberry Rhubarb Crostata and her Bourbon Honey Cake topped with almonds and filled with mouth-watering spices is downright divine and are must-have recipes for anyone who wants to spoil someone special.

Cooking for Jeffrey may be a celebration of a longtime marriage and a huge “thank you” for a lifetime of love and support, but it is also a necessary addition to any serious cook’s bookshelf. Whether you know your way around the kitchen, or are simply getting started, this volume has something for everyone, including a very handy resource section at the back to help you build your pantry and equip your kitchen. So do yourself a favor, and indulge your significant other’s cravings with recipes from this beautiful collection. Obviously, our mother’s knew what they were talking about when they said, the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. Cooking for Jeffrey is proof.


Ina Garten

Ina Garten

Ina Garten is the host of Food Network’s Emmy Award-winning show, Barefoot Contessa, and is the New York Times bestselling author of ten cookbooks, including Make It AheadBarefoot Contessa Foolproof, and Barefoot Contessa How Easy Is That? She published her first book, The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook,  in 1999. 

Before she became a domestic maven and television personality, Ina worked in the White House Office of Management and Budget writing nuclear energy budgets. But then she bought a specialty food store in the Hamptons in 1978, and it changed her life. Eighteen years later, she sold the store and wrote her first book. By 2002, she had her own show, and the rest, as they say, is history.

Ina lives in East Hampton, New York, with her husband, Jeffrey. Visit her home on the Web at, like her on Facebook, and follow her on Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.

COOKING FOR JEFFREY: A Barefoot Contessa Cookbook
By Ina Garten
256 pgs. Clarkson Potter. $35.

About Jathan Fink
Jathan is a journalist, philanthropist, and entrepreneur. He is also a travel junkie, foodie and jazz aficionado. A California native, he resides in Texas.

One Response to Ina Garten’s ‘Cooking for Jeffrey’ Proves Food Is Love [REVIEW]

  1. Jathan Fink says:

    Reblogged this on Jadeworks Entertainment and commented:

    If you ever wondered whether or not the way to a man’s heart really was through his stomach, you probably haven’t read the Barefoot Contessa, Ina Garten’s, latest cookbook, COOKING FOR JEFFREY. This book is as much about her marriage as it is about delicious recipes.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: