I’m going through a pare down / less-is-more phase in my life right now, and so I’m not letting any new cookbooks into my house until one goes out. But I’d happily hand over any cookbook in exchange for this one. Not only is it such a pleasure to read through a cookbook without having to mentally scale down all the ingredients (0.5 eggs, anyone?), but the folks at America’s Test Kitchen have a knack for nailing down the perfect recipe with clear instructions.
Just in time for wedding season, this bible for couples’ cooking helps two-person households limit leftovers, curb kitchen waste and prepare perfectly portioned and delicious dishes. Make dinners, desserts, breakfasts and other entrées for two, not the typical four to six servings.
For me, this new cookbook brings back some old memories. It was some years ago when I would make guest appearances on a television show “Over Easy,” which dealt with aging, to show how to prepare dishes for one or two people. As we get older, we’re are likely to be cooking for just that many people.
In the meat section, for example, there are recipes for prime rib and an all-American mini-meatloaf for two people. Each starts out with a paragraph that gives a clear description and understanding on way the recipe will work.
How about chili-glazed salmon with bok choy? Or salmon with asparagus and herb dressing? I can’t wait for salmon season to open.
These days, it’s just me and my full time dining companion (and wife) sharing our kitchen table. Cooking that family meal seems to be a lot tougher when there is only the two of you. Is it just me or does it feel like most recipes are targeted for the 4-5 person household? That’s not us. Even at our peak we were only three full time diners. Not including pets.
The main problem with my newfound cookbook love is that I’m mildly obsessed with it. Not in a ugly way. More in a, “what can I make out of this thing next” way. I’ve picked some great ones already. Add to the salmon above, Fennel, Apple and Chicken Chopped Salad (P.71), Cucumber Salad with Olives, Oregano and Almonds (P.68), Foolproof Vinaigrette (P.64) and Pot-Roasted Steaks with Root Vegetables (P.139). When you add it all up, I’ve taken this thing for a pretty decent spin around the block.
Should you own this cookbook? Take this simple quiz. Do you have two people in your house? Do you like making delicious recipes that are pretty much idiot proof? If you’ve answered YES to either of these questions then this one is a no-brainer. You need it!