The reviews are starting to trickle in for Goop's brand new gluten-, sugar-, dairy-, and meat-free cookbook,
DRAWERS AND DRAWERS OF ZUCCHINI UGH GIMME ZUCCHINI OM GROM GROMPH It's All Good: Delicious, Easy Recipes That Will Make You Look Good and Feel Great, and they're not exactly glowing like Goopy's creamy sheep's-yogurt Veela skin (maybe the reviews should try a 76-day fern cleanse!). I wrote excitedly about It's All Good back in December, and I have to say, I cannot wait to get my hands on this shit.
Now, I love Goop. I love her ironically and unironically all at once. I love her $800 towels and her bird-shaped smoke detector and her chia seed "pudding" (I compiled my favorite Goops of 2012 here). Most/least of all I love that she incessantly insists on writing cookbooks even though she OBVIOUSLY HATES FOOD.
The New York Post pretty thoroughly eviscerated It's All Good in their review this morning:
And now, with her second cookbook, she is once again promoting herself as a foodie and a health guru, despite a weird obsession that treats eating with a greater sense of restriction than relish.
The book reads like the manifesto to some sort of creepy healthy-girl sorority with members who use beet juice rather than permanent marker to circle the "problem areas" on each other's bodies. "Mealtimes should always feel happy. Not like a punishment," Paltrow assures us in the introduction, leaving us to wonder just what dinnertime torture she's previously endured.
She recounts how "lots of french fries and wine" were in part to blame for her health issues, but it's hard to imagine the Waspy poster girl for self-restraint actually overindulging, especially after she notes that she was also "severely anemic" and "vitamin D deficient" - ailments more common to those who don't indulge enough.
That sorority girl metaphor is weird and baroque, but I like it. Because that's exactly how Goop's food philosophy comes across—like typical American female body-hate and anxiety-driven food restriction trussed up like the breezy, enlightened, linen-clad lifestyle of a more evolved being. But regardless of how you feel about Goop's ever-narrowing dietary quirks (I personally feel that it's unlikely that the richest 1% of humans on earth all suddenly and simultaneously developed allergies to every single common food, but that's just me), I have to wonder if this new asceticism hurts her brand.
The fun and fascinating part of Goop (Goop the website, not Goop the person) is the oblivious, unrestrained luxury—the picnics on Hampstead Heath, the zero-gravity space-Pilates, the $400 caterpillar-sugar lobe cream (for your lobes). Do people really want to read an entire book about all of the things Gwyneth doesn't eat? Americans are so into being rustic, organic omnivores these days, I just wonder if a book about zucchini skins in water sauce isn't a serious PR gaffe.
While I don't have a copy of the book yet—it comes out April 2—a trusted source (okay, it was one of Gwyneth's artisanal bees) did leak me a few of Goop's much-anticipated It's All Good recipes.
Instructions: Rip out this page and eat it.
"Hot Page Two"
Instructions: Rip out this page and boil it and then eat it. Do not add anything or you will get diarrhea and you will deserve it.
"Boiled Book Water"
Find the water you discarded from your "Hot Page Two" (see: page two—oh...wait...) and strain it through a length of cheesecloth into an empty beehive. Drink. Run from bees.