The title of Gwyneth’s new cookbook – It’s All Good: Delicious, Easy Recipes That Will Make You Look Good and Feel Great – is problematic. Aside from the repetition of “good,” which is just a personal bugaboo, what if I cook all that food and I don’t look good or feel great? What if I make everything in there and still hate my face? Oh, Gwyneth. Don’t promise the moon and then give us a cheese platter. A cheese platter on its own merits is plenty.
But one thing Gwyneth totally excels at is a partial aura of regularness. I say partial, because you never ever actually forget that she’s Gwyneth freaking Paltrow. But look at her: She’s not wearing a ton of makeup and her hair is artfully normal and casual, enough to make you think, “Hey, she’s just like me,” even though she is Gwyneth Paltrow and she can spend a bajillion dollars on things like makeup that doesn’t look like makeup, and experimental facials, and exotic horse-spleen moisurizers, and whatnot. And her outfit is JUST relaxed and comfortable and normal enough that you might think, “She’s totally not super fancy,” until she does another GOOP closet sale and you realize that, no matter what it is, 90 percent of what she wears (and accessorizes with) costs a sum total of AT LEAST $3,000 if not more. And also, she talks a lot about how she doesn’t eat carbs or other delicious things, but it’s easy to forget that because THOSE LEGS, maybe if I just do some lunges… Basically, I admire about Gwyneth that for all the poshness that’s inherent in her life and in her GOOP mailings, she often does a great job making you think that being her isn’t really THAT much work, and you could do it, too, and hey, here’s an idea, it might help if you bought her cookbook.
All the aforementioned stuff, she has applied to the cover of this book. It’s JUST tousled and simple enough to distract you from how much work it probably took to look that tousled and simple. For the record, I once made a GOOP gnocchi recipe that was terrible, but I heard her first cookbook is actually quite good, and although I’ve never made anything out of it, I DID spent a good fifteen minutes doing dramatic readings from the text — she and her family love an iceberg wedge, I’ve learned — and it was big fun. You know, in these respects, is Gwyneth so different than Tyra Banks? T started out modeling, then acting, then she had a reality show, then a brief stab at singing (who could forget Shake Ya Body?), then a talk show, then she tried writing a young adult book. Gwyneth was an actress, then she tried sing-acting (Duets), then she went back to acting-acting, then she did MORE sing-acting, and then she became a lifestyle guru and had a reality show with Mario Batali, and then she Glee‘d it up and Cee Lo Green’d it up at the Grammys, and now she’s back to being Mother Health. I feel like the next step for both of them is to unite for a multi-cam sitcom. Please? Let’s try and name it in the comments.