Disney foodie fans will be happy that author Ashley Craft has published another book in her cookbook series! Read on for a review of The Unofficial Disney Parks Restaurants Cookbook by Ashley Craft.
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The Unofficial Disney Parks Restaurants Cookbook begins with a lovely introduction from the author Ashley Craft who gives some background on her expertise on Disney Foods. As a kid who grew up near Anaheim California, Disney has been a part of her life for a long time. While Unofficial won’t replace the magical treats (or the steep prices) that readers experience at the Parks, it can be used to enjoy Disney dishes at home in an affordable way.
Like her previous book The Unofficial Disney Parks Drink Recipe Book, Craft seeks to break down iconic Disney meals and simplify them for anyone to make and consume. Some of the recipes are simple, like the avocado toast from Pacific Wharf Cafe or the fried pickles from Carnation Cafe there are more challenging recipes like Disney’s classic cinnamon rolls.
Author Ashley Craft takes the time to give her readers some of the history behind Disney’s foods. She notes that a lot of the foods and treats like the chili, churros, and corn dogs that were available when the Park opened are still available now. She also breaks down what constitutes a Disney Restaurant and has them categorized as Signature Table Service, Quick Serve, Snack Stands, and more. While previous books focused on the cocktails and the snacks, The Unofficial Disney Parks Restaurants Cookbook gets the chunk of recipes inspired by Signature Table Restaurants like Be Our Guest in Walt Disney World or the secretive Club 22 in Disneyland.
With one chapter devoted entirely to the essential tools a cook will need to recreate these recipes, even beginning cooks should have the confidence to use this boo since Craft fully guides readers through everything they need to know to cook up a magical meal.
Each recipe has the title of the dish, where it can be found in Disney Park, a few suggestions for variations, instructions, and sometimes a short Disney fact or cooking hack to close out the recipe. While not every recipe has a photo, I did think the photos were bright and not overly staged like I’ve seen in other cookbooks.
Some photos are exactly shot the way you would receive the dish at a Disney Park, for example, the fried pickles are served in a basket with paper with a dipping sauce. This is exactly the way I received this tasty appetizer a few months at when I visited Carnation Cafe!
Craft also includes the iconic Lobster Nachos from Lamplight Lounge in Disney California Adventure and it looks to be like the original recipe which used frozen lobster instead of the gloopy canned version they serve now.
Desserts and drink recipes close out the book and items like the wonderful Meiloorun Juice are showcased. Craft also includes maps of the Parks showing where each dish is sold.
I have to note in this review that Craft’s clear passion for all things Disney resonates throughout The Unofficial Disney Parks Restaurants Cookbook, building a strong connection with readers who share her love for the magic of Disney. She diligently researches and recreates recipes from Disney parks with close attention to detail, ensuring that her Disney re-creations truly capture the flavors, presentation, and overall magic of Disney-inspired dishes.