Note about my Reviews

Dear Authors: The reviews in this blog are only personal opinions. I have absolutely no background in literature, writing or reviewing. I am a Librarian (actually a Library Technician for those who care OR know the difference) with a love for a good story. The opinions in the reviews are ONLY my OPINIONS. I am not commenting on the writers ability since well -- I am not a writer and never will be. If you are the author of any of the books reviewed here, my opinion is just that and not a judgment against you!

Friday, November 23, 2012

Chef Jeff Reviews: The Epicurious Cookbook

The Epicurious Cookbook
Tanya Steele & The Editors of Epicurious
Appetite (Random House)
ISBN: 978-0-449-01581-0
Buy from Indigo

Description: Epicurious is, undisputedly, the most respected website for people who like to cook. In their first-ever cookbook, the Epicurious editors have culled their extraordinary database of 180,000 recipes and selected their most popular recipes.

Organized seasonally and by meal type, The Epicurious Cookbook offers everything from 30-minute weeknight dinners to weekend warrior show-stoppers. Also included are comfort food favorites, small dishes perfect for parties and plenty of repertoire-building mains and sides, plus breakfasts, breads, and desserts. All new stunning four-color photography shows Epicurious at its most irresistible. Throughout are Epicurious member suggestions for tweaking recipes, ideas for menu planning, smart substitutions, and homespun recipes from dozens of Epicurious members newly tested for this cookbook. Recipes include:

Easy comfort foods: Chicken and Fall Vegetable Pot Pie, Beef Short Ribs Tagine, Spicy Mac and Cheese with Pancetta, Deviled Fried Chicken, Chili con Carne with Chili Cheddar Shortcakes

Fast Weeknight Dinners: Quick Paella, Wild Rice with Pecans, Raisin, and Orange Essence, Brussels Sprouts Hash with Caramelized Shallots, Rosemary Lamb Chops with Swiss Chard and Balsamic Syrup, Pan-Fried Spicy Orange Tilapia

Please-Everyone Vegetarian and Vegan Dishes: Chilled Soba with Tofu and Sugar Snap Peas, Spiced Lentil Tacos with Chipotle Sour Cream, Roasted Eggplant Salad

Special occasion show-stoppers: Tom Colicchios Herb-Butter Turkey, Beef Brisket with Merlot and Prunes, Wine-Braised Duck Legs

American Classics UpdatedBurgers, Pizzas, Salads, Pastas, and Grilled Cheese: Coffee-Rubbed Cheeseburger with Texas Barbeque Sauce; Hearty Asparagus, Fingerling Potato, and Goat Cheese Pizza; Lobster Pasta in a Roasted Corn Sweet Bacon Cream; Grilled Cheese with Onion Jam, Taleggio, and Escarole

Breakfast and Brunch Stars: Extreme Granola with Dried Fruit, Kitchen Sink Frittata, CrГЁme Brulee French Toast, and Ultimate Sticky Buns

Decadent Desserts: Double Layer Chocolate Cake, Apple Tart with Caramel Sauce, Frozen Lemon Ginger Snap Pie, Peanut Butter and Fudge Brownies with Salted Peanuts

Destined to be that classic youll turn to daily, The Epicurious Cookbook enhances the very best online content in a gorgeous cookbook

The Good Stuff
  • Incredible variety of recipes 
  • Lots of interesting & unusual combinations
  • Each recipe has comments from Epicurious users
  • Wife wants you to know the Index is fabulous
  • The banana bread recipe is the best we have ever used - Jen makes an excellent banana bread but this one is even better 
  • I didn't have time to make any of the recipes so Jen actually did all the cooking and baking -- she's getting better too
  • The pictures make the recipes look appetizing -- however there are very few pictures for such a large cookbook
  • I wasn't sure about Jen making the zuccini fritters but damn they were tasty
  • Everyone at Jen's work loved the two cookie recipes she made & they ate them all - she barely saved any for me
  • Like the organization of the cookbook into seasons
  • most of the recipes use ingredients that are readily available at most grocery stores

The Not So Good Stuff
  • Needs a lot more pictures
  • Many of the recipes have way too many steps for my wife
Favorite Recipes
  •  Amazing Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies Pg. 282
  • Sweet n' Smoky Meatloaf - Pg 352
  • Zucchini Patties With Feta - Pg 114
  • Beef Stew w/ Potatoes and Carrots - Pg 252
  • Dark Chocolate & Cherry Oatmeal Cookies - Pg 199 (Jen substituted almond extract for the vanilla & it really gave the cookies a spark)
  • Banana Bread w/ Chocolate Chips & Walnuts - Pg 208
  • Wild Mushroom Lasagne - Pg 236 (A lot of steps but wonderful flavor)
Who Should Use
  • There are quite a few easy to make recipes, but still wouldn't recommend it for the truly beginner cook
  • For the cook who wants to experiment
4/5 Dewey's

We received this from Random House in Exchange for an honest review

Dark Chocolate Cherry Cookies

Beef Stew w/ Potato & Carrots (Perfect for cold Calgary night)

Wild Mushroom Lasagna (Note use smaller dish)

My little helper for the cookies

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