Friday, November 27, 2015
Pro's: The pictures! I'm a very visual person and the pictures definitely caught my eye right away. I love to cook and was excited to try this book. I poured over each recipe and read through the book a couple times, ear-marking recipes I wanted to try. I also enjoyed the little intersects of personal tidbits through the book about his life growing up and memories/places related to recipes.
Con's: As with any cookbook, not every single recipe will be a keeper. There were some recipes I knew I needed to skip over either due to cost, the items not being available in our area, or knowing my kids would eat one bite and be done.
Recommendation: If you are a fan of Michael Symon's, you will like this book. Great pictures, easy recipes for the beginner chef to intermediate/brave chef who is up for a challenge.
The recipe I tried was in the Spring section and was titled Pork with Broccoli and Cashews.
1 pound pork tenderloin, sliced 1/8 inch think
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups broccoli florets (from 1/2 large head)
1/2 cup roughly chopped cashews
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1. Put a large skillet over high heat. Season both sides of the pork with salt and pepper. Add the olive oil to the pan. Add the pork in an even layer and cook, without moving, for 1 minute. Flip the pork and add the broccoli to the pan. Continue cooking until the pork and broccoli begin to brown, about 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the cashews, garlic and red pepper flakes and cook for another minute.
2. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, mustard, 2 tablespoons water, and the cornstarch.
3. Add the cornstarch mixture to the pan, over, and cook for 1 minute until the sauce thickens. Serve hot.
Adjustments I made: I did not add red pepper flakes due to sensitive taste buds in the house. I added the cashews as a side as not all members under our roof enjoy nuts.
*Outcome: I would make it again (my kids loved it) and would use a higher quality soy sauce as it was pretty salty even with the low sodium brand I used. I will add more broccoli next time as our youngest went back for seconds and I heard "ahhh...never mind...I wanted more broccoli" (words to a mother's ears!). I almost missed the w2 tablespoons of water in step 2 as water wasn't one of the ingredients up top and it caught me off guard a bit.
WaterbrookMultnomah sent me this complimentary book to review for them. Opinions expressed are
Saturday, November 14, 2015
Pro's: I enjoyed how the author kept you guessing throughout this book. It made it that much more appealing to read all the way to the end. It wasn't excessively over-the-top bloody and gory which is nice, especially if you're reading before going to sleep! Good plot and story-line.
Con's: Even though this was the first book in the series, I felt like I should've known who the main characters were. They way they were introduced throughout the book left me a little puzzled as to where they came from. It took a bit in to the book to learn back stories before feeling like they all made sense in my head.
Recommendation: If you enjoy mystery suspense, then you may enjoy this book. I've enjoyed previous books by Lisa Harris and you may as well if you like this book.
Revell Books sent me a complimentary copy to review for them. Opinions expressed are mine alone.
Monday, November 02, 2015
Pro's: The color pictures! I love cookbooks with pictures as I am a very visual person and like to see what dishes look like. There was a variety of cooking styles that may suit those looking for a different slant of how dishes are prepared.
Con's: Not many recipes were appealing. We are not a tofu family and the majority of recipes use tofu. I found very few healthy sweet recipes and very few recipes that contain main staples in the kitchen. I may be more tempted to prepare some of the recipes if it was just my husband and I, but with two growing kids, I know they may not particularly care for the unusual recipes. (Yes, they do try everything I cook). My pantry does not contain a lot of the buy-once ingredients, not would my budget fit the unusual assortment of items I would need to buy for one recipe.
Recommendation: If you are an adventurous cook, this is the book for you. If Beets with Orange Gremolata to Stuffed Chayote Squash make your fingers itch to get cooking, get this book and you may just enjoy some of the interesting dishes it has to offer.
The recipe I tried was Stuffed "Baked" Apples. The recipe is found below:
2 T sweetened dried cranberries
2 T gold raisins
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp olive oil
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground allspice
4 small Granny Smith, Fuji, or Gala apples, halved, cored scared
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
2 T chopped walnuts, dry roasted.
In a small bowl, stir together the brown sugar, cranberries, raisins, cinnamon, oil, nutmeg, ginger and allspice.
Put the apples in a shallow 1-quart microwaveable baking dish with a lid. Spoon the stuffing in the apples. Pour the orange juice around the apples.
Microwave, covered, on 100 percent power (high) for 6 to 7 minutes, or until the apples are soft.
Carefully transfer the apples to serving plates, leaving the juices in the dish. Microwave the remaining juices, uncovered, on 100 percent power (high) for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the mixture is reduced by half (to about 1/4 cup).
Just before serving, drizzle the juice mixture over the apples, Sprinkle with the walnuts
*I served with a scoop of vanilla ice-cream. I also omitted the walnuts as they are not a favorite in our household. This tasted really good, but hard to eat the skins - they were used more as a bowl to hold the softened apple in.
Waterbrook Multnomah sent me this complimentary book to review for them. Opinions expressed are my own, as is the photo of the dessert.
Sunday, November 01, 2015
Pro's: What a great book! It was a stand alone book even though it is in a series. I loved the story line, how the characters were portrayed, the battle put before Faith, the deep love and of course, the outcome. Kellie Coates Gilbert did a fantastic job keeping the reader engaged and hungry to read until the wee hours of the morning just to finish the book. What a heart string pulling book that takes you through the past of the main character and weaves it in to the present.
Con's: I wish it was longer! The only thing that could've been different was the cover. But what was behind the cover was amazing!
Recommendation: Read this book! There are not a lot of books that I will stay up late reading. This was one of them. Such a heart warming, heart wrenching good book that you won't be able to put down!
Revell Books sent me this complimentary book to review for them. Opinions expressed are my own.