|The America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook, Heavy-Duty Revised Edition
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Over time, twin enterprises Cook's Illustrated magazine and America's Test Kitchen have published many books dedicated to providing exhaustively tested recipes--"best" versions of traditional dishes plus definitive takes on kitchen equipment and ingredients. Some series readers have complained of endlessly recycled or rejiggered recipes; others take each book at face value, finding the formulas and cooking insights good and helpful. America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook, which calls itself a cookbook, cooking school, and kitchen reference in one, offers over 1,200 approachable recipes for a very wide range of dishes--from "weekday" fare like Creamy Rice Casserole, Cheesy Nachos with Spicy Beef, and Skillet Lasagna, to dressier recipes, including Pan-Seared Lamb Chops with Red Wine Rosemary Sauce, Roasted Trout Stuffed with Bacon and Spinach, and Chocolate Marshmallow Mousse. There are "specialty" chapters devoted to sandwiches, drinks, and slow cooker and pressure cooker dishes; a grilling section is a tutorial in itself.
Unorthodox, "better-way" approaches abound. For example, a fried chicken formula instructs the cook to wet the bird's dry coating slightly before it's applied for an extra-crunchy crust. Predictably, side bars feature equipment and ingredient evaluations, on bottled salsa, for example; "good food/bad food" photographs show readers what to aim for when producing fare like holiday cookies; and there are tips, charts, and "Cooking 101" sidebars galore. Step-by-step photos offer more direction still.
Though the majority of recipes are sound and yield tempting results, readers poring through the book will note gaffes and curiosities. The recipe for poached eggs, for example, offers the option of extra cooking for "firm yolks" (hard-boiled poached eggs, anyone?) and hamburgers receive an indentation before cooking to avoid "puffy" domed burgers, a novel problem that could, in any case, be solved by proper shaping. The addition of sugar to some savory dishes--for example, a pan sauce for steak--is misguided. Readers should also know that the book, which comes in loose-leaf form, requires some assembly, and that the pages themselves are quite thin, making them vulnerable to spills and tearing in daily kitchen use.
These things said, the book delivers solid, family-friendly dishes with enough fully orchestrated "how- to" to make even novice cooks feel secure when tackling the basics or more ambitious fare.
What's New in the Revised Editon?
First out in 2005, America?s Test Kitchen Family Cookbook was praised for its recipe ease, inclusiveness, and wealth of helpful information, but was also criticized for its physical production. A loose-leaf book with its pages included separately, readers found it inconvenient to assemble and its paper impractically thin. The revised edition is printed on heavier stock, and arrives with its pages already on its rings (there are two more now, for sturdiness) with only chapter dividers to insert, a simple task.
In addition, new inside front and back covers provide information on emergency substitutions, roasting guidelines, equivalent measures, and more--and a "Light Recipes" chapter has been included. Without defining precisely what "light" means--fewer fats and carbs, or a combo?--the section offers attractive all-course recipes, such as turkey chili, veggie burgers, meat and cheese lasagna, and chocolate bundt cake. Some readers will welcome the "slimming" of familiar dishes while others will find some of the manipulations--using cornstarch to thicken the sauce in fettuccine alfredo or ricotta to add body to a reduced-fat pesto, for example--unappealing. The book, however, remains a valuable kitchen tool--and one with greater convenience and durability than before. --Arthur Boehm
Exclusive Recipe Excerpts from The America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook (Revised Edition)
More from America's Test Kitchen
Repackaged to be easier to use and expanded to include a whole new chapter of healthy, light recipes, this revised edition of one of last fall's bestselling cookbooks remains the one and only basic cookbook you will ever need. Beautiful step-by-step photos illuminate every conceivable technique from chopping shallots and skinning salmon to cutting up a chicken and tying a roast. In fact, just about anything you want to do in the kitchen is explained in these pages in America's most popular test kitchen's approachable, no-nonsense voice.
These recipes will keep you busy (and your friends and family happy) for years to come, since we've included hundreds of easy weeknight dishes (like Skillet Lasagna and One-Pot Chicken and Rice), company-worthy dinners (like Beef Burgundy, Roast Leg of Lamb, and Fresh Fruit Trifle), equipment ratings, shoppings tips, and more.
- Great Cook Book
This is one of many cookbooks I own and this is a nice one as it is fairly complete and has good recomendations from the test kitchen as well as good alternatives as well to the main dishes listed. It also is bound nicely and holds up well in the kitchen. I would recomend this book...more info
- really good cookbook
I LOVE this cookbook. I purchased America's Test Kitchen Baking Book and liked it so much that I ordered this one, and it's just as good as the baking book, if not better.
The book is binder-style, so the pages lay flat while cooking, which is very convenient. The book comes with tabbed inserts for each chapter that make it easy to navigate through the book.
This cookbook is full of product reviews, tip and tricks, shortcuts and suggestions that make it an excellent choice for anyone from the beginner to advanced cook. It's full of easy recipes that the whole family should enjoy, such as apple pie and meatloaf.
This book will refresh your cooking repertoire and should keep your family enjoying mealtime for months to come. Highly recommended. ...more info
- Best Cookbook EVER!
I own probably over 100 cookbooks but this is the one that I reach for time after time. It has great classic, easy to follow recipes. I have not been let down with one recipe yet! I've recently made the classic white cake with white icing and have received RAVE reviews on it!
One of the best features that I like about it is I feel like I learn more about cooking or baking when I open this book. It's a great read, even when you aren't planning on making anything right then. You can get a lot of good ideas and the product reviews are great to read also!
I can't wait to get the new Baking cookbook they came out with recently. ...more info
- Use it almost every day
I'm still a college student, but I have to tell you. This is a great cookbook to have around the kitchen! I love that it tells you why you are doing one thing rather than something else (deters the inexperienced chef like myself to try something funky)....more info
- Easy on the eyes, tough on the tastebuds
I have several cookbooks from America's Test Kitchen, and loved them. The New Best Recipe, in particular, is my favorite. I received this cookbook as a gift, and loved putting in the dividers and looking at all of the colorful illustrations (normally most of their cookbooks are illustrated in pen-and-ink drawings). It has a 1950's retro feel to it, which I like.
However, I must agree with another reviewer that while some of the recipes are straight out of their episodes and other cookbooks, there are several I've tried so far that seem "safe" and therefore bland. The blueberry muffin recipe turned out dry and crumbly. The chili had to be kicked up a notch with some additional spices at the last minute, and the spinach dip was watery and unremarkable.
But there are lots of recipes and I like the way they're organized, so I would say it's worth purchasing, but not worth the honor of the "go-to" cookbook that never fails you....more info
- Bought as a gift and came back to buy one for myself!!!!
A wonderful book - one you could, if your a cookbook lover like I am, pick up and read like a good book! Love the fact all the recipes are tested till they're perfect. I am buying another one for a shower gift!
I truly think this is going to be my favorite, most-used cookbook!...more info
- Great "go to " resource
I am an experienced cook who has enjoyed other America's Test Kitchen books. This is a perfect cookbook for any kitchen as it provides all the basic, time honored favorites as well as countless other helps and pictures and how-to's that are fully tested for great success. I bought it for a gift and kept it for myself, buying three more for gifts....more info
- America's Test Kitchen always the best!
As with all their cookbooks, this one is "the best" -- the Test Kitchen takes favorite recipes and reworks them until they are the best possible, using innovative but simple techniques and ingredients. Sometimes you might want to adjust a spice, etc., for your own taste, but the techniques and overall recipes will give you more than a bang for your buck! Very "user-friendly"....more info
- This is the one I reach for
This is my standard. If I need a recipe for something, I check this first. Everything turns out very well. The only negative is that the pages can be torn out rather easily. I wish this were a standard book rather than 3 ring binder style....more info
- The only cookbook series you will ever want.
This cookbook is a fabulous resource for any cook. These recipes are actually tested repeatedly by ATK as well as home users before the recipes are published in hard copy or soft copy. The recipes are detailed when needed as well as offering variations. Neither this cookbook nor ATK have ever let me down when it comes to recipes. The recipes bring flavor and ease back into the kitchen. This company truly looks out for the consumer. ATK is the final authority in my kitchen for all recipes, cooking supplies, and equipment. It is because of the knowledge I have gained from ATK I have been able to overhaul some old family recipes.
- Great cook book!
I bought this for a gift, and it came quickly and in great shape. It has a new section on cooking light that looks promising....more info
- Great gift for bachelors
Gave this as a gift to a young man just moving into his own place. So far the reviews are great. He used it to prepare dinner for friends, said it was a success. I just ordered another for a Christmas gift!...more info
- The only cookbook you need
I received this cookbook last year at my bridal shower. I am an avid cook and have used many cookbooks. I also love to create my own recipes. Ever since I got this book it is virtually my cooking bible. I have tried dozens of the recipes in here and every single one has been excellent. Examples are apple crisp, pulled pork, guacamole, light chicken parm, shimp scampi, etc. Some of the recipes are simple and others are complicated - the Test Kitchen tells you the best way to make something, and it's always worth the trouble in my experience. But, if you are the "30 minute meal type" it may not be the cookbook for you.
If you like the book you should check out the Test Kitchen's magazine Cook's Illustrated.
- ALMOST PERFECT
When I received the cookbook, I knew from reader previous reviews that the chapter dividers would need to be inserted. That would have been no problem except one insert was duplicated, so one was missing. The customer service at Amazon was very helpful and quickly got another issue out so it was received in time to give for a gift. This is my new "GO TO" gift for newlyweds AND experienced cooks. It has a wealth of useful info and great recipes. I'm glad the new revised edition has been improved; this is an excellent product. Rings and paper quality are just fine for me....more info
- Fantastic Confidence Bulder Cookbook!
I come from a family of NON-Cookers and limited bakers. This cookbook is FANTASTIC! It helps to build a non-cookers confidence to a level of comfort in the kitchen! Before this book, I could not imagine being able to cook anything as tasty as "Smothered Pork Chops"! I have only had ONE recipe in this book (so far, three years of using it) that I would not make again...
Its not BASIC, the recipes do take time to prepare, but they taste great!
There are few obscure ingredients, makes shopping easy.
For a family of four, to make meals that are fun, this is a great buy!
- My Cooking Bible
I've had this book for the last 2 years and it literally is my cooking bible. Great product reviews and straight forward instructions. I'm a very visual person and they have great photos to show the finished product and/or how to prepare something and best of all, the food tastes amazing! I've had to disclose several recipes to friends. It is a definite must have in the everyday kitchen.
Regarding the product tiself, the book itself is pretty sturdy. I've noticed that the plastic laminate is starting to peel and my book came with several pages that were not hole punched correctly (thus several pages are misaligned). Otherwise, for a recipe book that carries 700+ pages, it's as sturdy as it can get....more info
- My opinion
The America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook, Heavy-Duty Revised Edition
Terrific book,very well made,many great hints and information,interesting reading in addition to great recipes. Not up to date with the latest programs and recipes. Good value for the money compared to others....more info
- Outstanding purchase!
I purchased this for a friend,in fact, I've bought 5 of these for friends. It is very user friendly and the tips from America'sa Test Kitchens have saved me both time and money.
My son who is a grad of the Culinary Institute of America bought my copy for me. I now can butcher one of those whole beef tenderloins that you buy at Costco or Sams like a pro.The directions and pictures made it a breeze. That alone was worth the price.
Try the Shrimp Scampi. It is a favorite of ours....more info
- Good intro to basic American food
I've never watched America's Test Kitchen on TV, but have heard (mostly) good things about the program. I bought this cookbook to give their supposedly "best way" method a try. I have had this book since July 2008, and have pulled it out to cook something from it every other week or so. For the most part, the recipes I have tried have been foolproof. The section devoted to eggs, for example, solved a lot of problems I was having in preparing eggs simply in various ways, from fried to poached. I don't find their food product suggestions that useful, and in general many of their product recommendations are dated. But overall, this is a good intro to basic American cooking, in a convenient format....more info
- Every kitchen should have one
Recipes are excellent and easy to follow. Beautiful pictures. Reviews on kitchen supplies are great! I'll open the book looking for a recipe and find myself lost in reading about unrelated subjects. I bought this book for a friend. I wouldn't hesitate to give it as a gift to anyone....more info
- Bye, bye epicurious!
My husband and I had been getting recipes regularly off the internet. Since we bought this fabulous cookbook, it is now our recipe bible! We have used recipes from all categories and everything we have cooked it consistently delicious. ...more info
- Last cookbook you'll need!
This cookbook is wonderful! It is full of practical tips, product reviews, explicit directions, and yummy food. This will be my go-to cookbook for years to come!...more info
- Excellent cookbook!
I orginally bought this for one of my children as a college graduation present. I ended up keeping it and bought another. Excellent cookbook!...more info
- Believe in it! These recipes work, plain and simple.
I actually purchased the original edition in 2005, but would love to have this newer version with the heavier paper- several of my pages have ripped out of the binder. Either way, I have not had a SINGLE bad meal using this cookbook. They really and truly test the heck out of each recipe and it shows. There are times when I read a recipe and think that maybe "my way" is better, but I forge ahead in the name of science and do it their way. Guess what? Their way is better every time. We used their meatball recipe last night and they were FANTASTIC- tender and yummy. My meatballs are usually dense and a little dry. I made fried eggs this morning following their recipe (and thinking "low heat? really?" the entire time.) Again- awesome eggs. Trust me, you will not go wrong following their recipes. Do it their way, even if it seems like there are extra steps and you've never done it that way before. It just works....more info
- Best Cookbook for beginners to seasoned cooks
Every recipe I've tried as been prepared to perfection because of the great tips and clear directions. "Best" product buying tips are also helpful. The recipes are created through much testing to achieve the best taste, texture and appearance and it works!...more info
- Something for the whole family!!!
This has to be one of the best cookbooks I have ever had the opportunity to create amazing meals from. My cocktail books aren't even this fun!! My boyfriend and I have been cooking from it at least once a week, if not more, for over two months and, I am happy to report, have grown closer because of it. The book encourages cooperation amongst all family members because it has soooo many good things, everyone has to sit down together and discuss the wonderment that is going to be breakfast, lunch, or dinner for that day. We made some chili, cornbread, and banana bread this last weekend and can't wait for this coming weekend to try something new!!!
I encourage all who come across this book to pick it up, take it home (or buy it online) and start cooking right away. The book gives so much and asks little in return.
This will be the best cookbook you will ever have. ...more info
- Best cookbook...EVER
This cookbook is by far and away the most-used cookbook in our "stash". The recipes are instructional and give you reasons and descriptions for following the steps as instructed. The product reviews are helpful and have led us to many great products (sometimes even money-saving finds!). This would make a great gift for anyone starting out on their own, or as a wedding present! It is my go-to cookbook and I recommend it to everyone- even if you already own 20 others!...more info
- Good recipes, poor paper quality
I own many Cook's Illustrated cookbooks, and I love them - except this one. The recipes are fine - great in fact! However, what good are fantastic recipes if you can't see them? I spilled water (WATER!) on the book, and now so many of the pages are stuck together, it is unusable. The paper quality is extremely poor, and very thin. (Not the hefty paper stock of their other cook books.) When I try to separate the pages that are stuck together, they just rip. At this point, I can't read at least a third of the book. I feel like I really wasted my money on this one. The ring binders also don't fit together like they should, so pages slip out at front and back. It was a huge disappointment. ...more info
- Great Book, Great Gift
This is a great cook book. Very well organized. It is bound in a 3-ring binder which is perfect if you want to add your own content and notes. The equipment and ingredient suggestions make this a good first cookbook for young people....more info
- The Best Cookbook Ever!
This is the best cookbook I have ever owned...I've been married 35 years, so you can imagine how many I've had.
The recipes are great and so are the instructions. But the best part of the book would have to be the TIPS.
Love everything about this book....more info
Love the show and love this cookbook. The recipes are wonderful and so worth the extra effort. ...more info
- The only cookbook you'll ever need.
Short and sweet - buy this book. If it falls apart while you're using it, tape it back together. There is not one recipe I've made from this book that has not turned out excellent. It's now my new "regular" wedding gift to new couples....more info
- Best Cookbook!
This is the best cookbook I've ever owned. Every recipe is fantastic and they really spend time telling you how to do things the right way. They have great recommendations for kitchen equipment and ingredients. I would highly recommend it...oh and the baked ziti is fantastic!!!...more info
- The facts and more
This cook book gives you the why and the how. Liked it so much bought two and gave one as a gift. This book is right next to my "Joy Of Cooking" on the shelf. Buy it if you know nothing about cooking for the "HOW". Buy it if you know a lot for the "WHY". It will make you better cook....more info
- Toss out your old cookbooks.
This is the best cookbook ever. I used to use my old staple popular cookbooks that I grew up on. But, I would always question "why" do they request this ingredient over that one. Or why do it that long way, can't I cheat and do it the easier way. Well, this cookbook tells you the WHY reason behind all sorts of things which in turn makes you a better cook. They give you easier ways to do so many things, the best commercial product to use for the recipe and little pictures so you can SEE how to do the steps. Its simplified so you don't have to stare at a wall of tiny words that look daunting. I give this cookbook to everyone for wedding gifts and new couples for housewarming gifts. I am always thanked later with so much gratitude....more info
- America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook
I ordered three of these after seeing my sister-in-law's older version - two for gifts and one for personal use. Unfortunately, one of the three did not come with index separators (obviously, I kept this one)and I need to find out how to remedy this error. This cookbook is great for user-friendly recipes, procedures, and helpful pics. I especially recommend it for those new to cooking and baking:-) ...more info
- Great Reference Cookbook
I pride my self on being a good cook. I checked out the cookbook from the library because I love the T.V. series. I was plesantly surprised to find this book very informative. There are great pictures and progressions of procedures from bread making to cutting up fruits and vegetables. We love the cookbook so much we ordered them for all of the weddings we have been invited to for the next few months. This is a great beginner or professional cookbook....more info
This is my most favorite, most used cookbook. I appreciate the pictures and steps with explanations. This was my favorite Christmas gift....more info
- I have bought over a dozen of these
This is such a good cookbook! I buy it for everyone for gifts. First, it's from the America's Test Kitchen/Cook's Illustrated people. They are like the Consumer's Reports of cooking. They will make 45-50 recipes for the same dish and figure out what the best way to do it is. And they tell you why, so you learn a little food science along the way.
Second, it's everyday family food. They aren't trying to reinvent the wheel or be super creative and stand out. This isn't about some chef's personality or style or creative twists, it's about making really good normal food. So you're in a rut, you thumb through the book, and you say, "Yes, I'll have reubens/beef stroganoff/chicken chili tonight!" And you know it'll be the best reuben/beef stroganoff/chicken chili and everything will be perfectly explained. I highly recommend this. Buy one! Or fifteen, like me....more info
- Good, but not great
I have tried several of these recipes and I'm just not that impressed. The recipes lack flavor and can be very high in calories (though they state no nutritional information in this book). If you are looking for a standard book like this, I would suggest Betty Crocker over this cookbook. ...more info
- Great book for beginning chefs
This is a perfect book for the person who is moving out on their own for the first time. Many cookbooks give overly complicated recipes for simple foods but don't provide the cooking temperature and times for chicken or show how to cook an artichoke. This cookbook gives the basics (a fantastic way to cook a baked potato that comes out perfect every time) as well as going into some more advanced cooking (making home made ice cream that will make your summer memorable). You won't regret buying this book unless you are Thomas Keller and I doubt he needs this book (unless he wants to cook a baked potato for himself)....more info
- A Great Starter Collection
I got this book almost two years ago and it's great. A lot of standard recipes and techniques for the home cook. Almost everything I've made has been good, a few recipes were great (German Apple Pancakes comes to mind). It has almost every basis American recipe you can thing of, plus a few "ethnic" staples. It's an excellent starter cookbook. If you only want one cookbook this would be it.
Only downside is the verison I have comes in a binder formensures you stay on the page you want, but which makes page turning a little difficult. So far have no pages have been torn with regular use. ...more info
- Best. Cookbook. Ever.
I have tried a dozen different recipes out of this book in the two months I've owned it, and every one was One Of The Best Things I Have Ever Cooked.
These are not recipes that you will have to tweak a little the second or third time you do them. They are fabulous exactly as written, which makes sense considering they are based on a show that tries to come up with "the best" way to cook whatever they are making.
The flavors are surprisingly rich and sophisticated for recipes that generally have fairly simple ingredients. Those labeled "fast" are appropriate for weeknight meals. Their product suggestions have also been spot-on.
These guys are the perfect balance between "foodies" and practical, normal cooks making dinner for a family. I can't recommend this book highly enough....more info
- The best recipes and certainly of broad appeal.
This is a top cookbook for serious home cooks who have to turn out something every evening. The work is an emanation of the America's Test Kitchen TV show (PBS) where Christopher Kimball and his staff consistently turn out the best methods for preparing popular recipes. It's, by far, the best cooking show on television.
The book itself lies nicely, being a notebook-type binding. And there are LOTS of recipes in here that you will make over and over.
I check this book out at my local library quite often and make two or three of the recipes over the course of a week and then return it. I've written some of them down that are "keepers" (I have a high standard for such recipes!)
If you only had 3 or 4 cookbooks on the shelf, this should be one of them. A fine effort.
See my Listmania list: Cookbooks for People Who Actually Cook....more info
- All my favorite dishes
This is the first Test Kitchen book I bought and I am enjoying reading it like a novel. There are so many tips in it and I like seeing the finished dish in all of the photos. All of the recipes are familiar family food, just tweaked to be something better. I liked that. I have enough exotic cookbooks with odd ingredients, I didn't need another one. The only problem I have with it is trying to remember where I saw that tip because they're scattered throughout, not in one place. Even though I have been cooking for many many years I still like to perfect a dish. For a new cook I don't think you could beat this book as a present, better even than BHG classic big book....more info
- America's Test Kitchen Revised Edition
America's Test Kitchen is a cookbook for everyone. They test their receipes and offer excellent practical solutions for kitchen skills in
cooking. ...more info
- Everything you always wanted to know about cooking and then some.
Aside from the fact that this is one hefty book and two hands are needed to lug it around by everyone except Iron Man and the Hulk, this book serves just about every purpose for cooks of every caliber. There are recipes for everyday family meals as well as upscale dishes for the more educated palate.
What I especially like are the detailed instructions with accompanying photos to help us with techniques that are unfamiliar to us. Add to that the substitution list and the measurement conversion chart (I could have used this during my four years in Hong Kong.), high altitude instructions, and menu planning.
I was looking for a cookbook to give as a graduation gift, along with a copy of 50 Ways to Leave Your Mother, a humorous advice book for grown kids moving out on their own, and the cookbook had to have lots of instructions for the novice cook. This book has all of that and will work nicely for my gift-giving needs. I do have a word of caution for those thinking of giving this book to a first-time cook. Think twice before handing over a copy to the guy whose culinary specialties are ramen noodles and those filled pockets of melted cheese and who knows what else. (The book would just end up being a side table on which to set their beer cans.) On the other hand, it would be perfect for the novice cook who watches the Food Network religiously, cuts recipes out of magazines, and likes to cook for others; someone who will appreciate all the trial and error that went in to creating some very good recipes and a very complete cookbook. ...more info
- Maybe has good recipes -- pages stuck together!
Upon the first use of this book, the pages got wet and stuck together. They are now glued together and rip apart. I cannot use the index at all and so much of the book is completely unusable. They do not have any customer service to speak of so I cannot return the book. Hopefully a negative review here will warn potential buyers. Based on the number of reviewers with this issue, this is a well known problem yet they make no allowances to exchange for another cookbook. No other cookbook in our library has this problem. The pages are extremely thin and of poor quality. Shame on them for putting out a book of this quality -- it could have used some testing!...more info
- Good cookbook - Shoddy quality control
If you're a fan of the show, you'll love having so many of their recipes at your fingertips. They are detailed and clearly written with lots of photos and best of all, the results are usually delicious.
The reason I dropped a star from the rating was because my cookbook was missing one of the dividers; the index card-like pages that separate the various sections. That might not sound like a big deal, but each divider has a table of contents for the recipes in that section.
A phone call to the publisher requesting the missing divider got nowhere fast when the lady learned I didn't buy the book directly through them. An exchange through Amazon required that I pay return shipping (so much for saving any money ordering online). I then emailed the publisher and asked the same question I did on the phone and luckily the person who responded was much more polite and mailed me the missing divider, although it was a bit beaten up by the time it arrived....more info
- Gave "test kitchens" as gift....well received!
My mom loved this cookbook when I gave it to her a couple of years ago. I recently gave it to a girlfriend and she loved it too. Now I need to get one for myself....more info
- Best Cookbook Ever!
Okay, you MUST get this cookbook! I absolutely love it and am upset I didn't have this years ago. My husband got mad that I bought yet another cookbook - but after he looked at it, he agreed that its a must-have! I love all the tips and reviews they give in the book next to recipes - it helps me so much to learn from their experiences. The recipes are great for a Mom trying to get ideas for dinners - now I can make easy spaghetti sauces, great sauces for everything from steaks, to chicken and more. I feel like I have taken a cooking class after reading through some of these recipes and tips. You must have this in your arsenal of cookbooks - its the best! I'm going to start giving this as a wedding gift too....more info
- Great content, terrible binding.
This is a great book. I have made many of the recipes and all have turned out and been quite delicious. It is the cookbook I reach for first. Some of our favorite recipes are the stovetop mac and cheese, bolognaise sauce, scalloped potatoes, indoor BBQ chicken, cream biscuits, all the cookie recipes, and chicken enchiladas (I will never again buy canned enchilada sauce. It's sooo easy to make and tastes 1000 times better.) These recipes are not all repeats from Cooks Illustrated Mag, as far as I can tell. The book contains straightforward recipes with none of the florid desciptions of process that are present in other Cook's Illustrated books.
As much as I love the book, I can't give it 5 stars because my copy is completely falling apart. Maybe I got a bum copy, but after a year of use both covers of my "Heavy Duty Edition" are almost completely ripped off. We are not hard on books here, I think the weight of the book is too much for the cover. ...more info
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