Cook the Book: 'Jamie's Food Revolution'

20100104-jamiesfoodrevolution.jpgMondays are never fun but the first Monday of the new year is a particularly harsh one to wake up to. Whether it's getting up early for the gym or kicking off a new diet, chances are your New Year's resolutions won't be as fun as opening gifts.

To help ease into January with recipes that focus on feel-good foods, we're devoting Cook the Book this month to healthy and inexpensive cooking, starting with Jamie's Food Revolution, the latest from the British cooking sensation Jamie Oliver.

Oliver went from sous chef to television personality in practically no time, thanks to his boyish good looks, carefree cooking style, and an infinitely likable personality. His first show, The Naked Chef premiered in 1999, and a series of cookbooks and television programs followed. In recent years, Oliver has turned his attention to food politics, trying to get the British public get back into the kitchen, cooking and eating more healthfully by embracing fresh, local foods.

This book's inspiration comes from Marguerite Patten, a home economist who worked for the British Ministry of Food during the World War II. Food shortages were a sad fact of the time and Patten helped the British public cope by offering inventive recipes through a weekly radio broadcast. Her cooking suggestions kept the nation healthy and well-fed throughout a very trying time.

Food shortages certainly aren't the problem that Oliver is looking to tackle—instead he is waging a war against obesity by encouraging people to eat better and forgo processed convenience foods in favor of home cooked meals. In a culture where it's become easier to eat out, take-out, or get delivery, Oliver is fighting the battle by reintroducing the art of home cooking.

Jamie's Food Revolution is filled with simple pastas, curries, and British dishes that don't involve hours of intensive labor. They can be enjoyed by the whole family, and most importantly, without a guilty conscious. Everyday this week we will feature recipes from Jamie's Food Revolution, from spicy curries to roast dinners and easy pastas.

Win 'Jamie's Food Revolution'

Thanks to the generosity of the folks over at Hyperion, we are giving away five (5) copies of Jamie's Food Revolution this week. All you have to do is tell us about your favorite easy weeknight meal in the comments section below.

Five (5) people will be chosen at random among the eligible comments below. We're sorry, but entry is only open to residents of the U.S. and Canada. Comments will close Monday, January 11 at noon ET. The standard Serious Eats contest rules apply.