Cover Image: Seriously Good Chili Cookbook

Seriously Good Chili Cookbook

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Member Reviews

I was drawn to this book because I’m a huge fan of The Office, the character Kevin, and chili. I really enjoyed the history, humor, and recipes. There was no way I was going to nail enough of these recipes before writing a review, but I have a pound of ground round ready to go for chili and there’s no way I can now go wrong.

Thanks to NetGalley and Fox Chapel Publishing for an ARC of this book.

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Thank you to the author, publisher, and NG for a digital copy of this cookbook in exchange for honest feedback.

At first glance, this cookbook's appeal comes from its author who is the actor behind a beloved character from the hit television series "The Office" (US). The character has an infamous slip-up in which he spills a pot of his famous chili in the office. The author has carried this chili concept over into a cookbook. With a note from his co-star and coworker Oscar, the cookbook opens to reveal that it's not just a gimmick. There is a lot of valuable information thematically provided that any chili connoisseur would enjoy.

The content: all sorts of chili recipes ranging from the most standard to the most unique, different ways to serve it, etc.

Two points I'd like to make that add unique value to the book aside from its author: 1) contributions are provided from an array of cooks and experts; 2) QR codes are provided and you can scan to them to open a video of the recipe being made. I read a lot of cookbooks and this is the first time I've seen something like that. I love this idea. I also love all the different contributions and the section that shows the award winning recipes from the competitions in the back of the book.

All around, great book. Good gift for a The Office fanatic, but this book is only briefly related to this by that scene and its author. This is a serious cookbook, but one that is also laidback, straightforward, and innovative.

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Fans of "The Office" will understand why Brian Baumgartner is the obvious choice to present this chili cookbook. I'll be honest: I've never seen an episode of "The Office". So, I was curious about a story that started with, "On April 30, 2009, at roughly 9:02pm, my life changed forever. I became known as "the chili guy"." His anecdote about a rather messy scene in the "Casual Friday" episode of the series involves physical humor and definitely needs visuals to really tell the tale, so six photographs of 'the incident' are included. By the end of the story, I was laughing and groaning and most definitely got the joke.

Having made sure I understood the joke that forms the premise of this book, we move on to "A Brief History of Chili and Fun Facts" and "A Chili Timeline". The timeline is fascinating - don't skip over it! Then, it's story time again. Brian talks about his search for the perfect chili. It's a tall tale that will leave you wondering how much of it is true and how much is epic storytelling.

"Good to Know Info" tidbits are dropped here and there throughout the book, giving you tips, tricks, and information about chili. Also, QR codes are scattered throughout the book . If you see one and scan it with your phone, you'll link up with a cooking video. And then, at last! We come to a recipe! It's "Brian's Seriously Good Chili", his personal go-to recipe. Next, an extensive hot pepper heat scale was a welcome sight. I love this. There are SO many pepper varieties, who can remember them all, or what their heat level is? Now I know if I'm offered a Carolina Reaper, I should run away. Fast.

And just when you're wondering where the other 176 recipes are, they appear. The variety is incredible. If you can't find a chili recipe in this collection to your liking, you probably don't like food at all. One grouping of the recipes are winners of ICS (International Chili Society) World Championships. The final recipe is 'the' recipe that was used in that incident in 'that' episode of "The Office". How fitting. All in all, this is more than just a cookbook. It's a celebration of the history, culture, and diversity of chili.

My thanks to author Brian Baumgartner, Fox Chapel Publishing, and NetGalley for allowing me to read a digital advance review copy of this book. This review is my honest and unbiased opinion.

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This is a must own for any fan of The Office - I’ve already preordered copies! The only thing to be warned of is the book is only available in hard cover with an internal spiral binding. This isn’t something that bothers me, but just a watch out in case it bothers you!

I knew even before getting to the recipes that this book was going to be a winner. Having the note from Oscar, especially after his appearance on Worst Cook’s, was just the perfect beginning to this book.

In the foreword as well, Baumgartner gives so much personality about how after The Office chili became something so central to him. I admire his commitment to ensuring that chili from around the world is well documented and correctly represented.

Another really neat thing for me was the integration of the QR code scan to incorporate videos and an interactive element to the cookbook. I think this is such a fun way to get people involved in the book. Plus, the step by step pictures included in some of the recipes really makes this a standout, as it can help people at all skill levels make these recipes.

I also really appreciated the pepper heat conversion chart and the measurement conversion chart - these are such helpful resources for people that can often get overlooked in cook books. Plus the section on each recipe with information about the specific chef who created the recipe was a great nod to each of these people, along with recognizing the awards they have won for their chili recipe.

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A fantastic chili cookbook! There are lots of recipes from chefs (brief bios included on each recipe), and recipes that have won awards have lists of those. Each recipe has full color photos and clearly shows number of servings and time to cook.
The book starts with a history of chili and has fun facts sprinkled throughout. There are pages with a pepper heat scale. Recipe chapters are Chili Con Carne, Chili Verde, White Chicken Chili, Texas Chili, Cincinnati Chili, Turkey Chili, Vegetarian Chili, Black Bean Chili, Homestyle Chili, Chili Takes (Chili Dogs, Nachos, Cornbread, and More), and ICS World Championship recipes. There is also a map of chili cook-off locations.
This is a great book for those who love chili! And especially fun for fans of The Office, as it includes Kevin's Famous Chili as a bonus recipe. This book makes me excited for the weather cooling off so I can try some of these great recipes.

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This book was so fun! It included actors from The Office and little blurbs. All the different chilis look so delicious and if I wasn’t vegan, I would try them all!

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Thank you to netgalley for an ark. This book was very fun book with some great chili recipes from everyday people.

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I read an advanced reader copy. So the text part of this may have not been as interesting to me because I have never seen an episode of The Office. Frankly I didn’t read much of the text, I stuck to the recipes and the photos. Both of which were interesting and attractively presented. Loads of different recipes by type and region. It occurs to me that most people have their ingrained favorite chili recipe and won’t try these in their place, though may modify the favorite.

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This is a nice book that will be a hit with Office fans. It has an assortment of chili recipes by category and a nice compilation of award winning ones. There is no nutritional information and it uses one of my pet peeves for cookbooks, using stock photos instead of photos of the actual recipes. Some photos seem to be of the actual recipes but a huge number of them are just from Shutterstock. I really like photos but I want them to be of the actual dish, otherwise it feels kind of like a bait and switch or like false advertising. Also, so many of the recipes are variations of cubes of steak in chicken stock with varying amounts of tomato paste and seasonings. Some are from blogs, some from viewers who submitted them, some from chili cook-offs. I was surprised how many award winning chili recipes call for a jar of green salsa and/or MSG. I've lost a little respect for award winning chili cooks. All that said, it's a fun cookbook.

I read a temporary digital ARC of this book for review.

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I have been recommending this book to all my fellow office fans! Also who doesn't love a good chilli!

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Fantastic read. Although it’s a cookbook. There is a lot of fun and interesting information enclosed in the book. Along with some recipes to try out at home. It’s very well put together.

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