Showing posts with label Cookbook Reviews. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Cookbook Reviews. Show all posts

Friday, January 29, 2021

Taste of Home Instant Pot Cookbook Review

The "Taste of Home Instant Pot Cookbook" is an absolute must for anyone seeking recipes for their Instant Pot.

Instant Pot Cookbook
A few years ago, my parents gave me an Instant Pot.  I really wanted the Instant Pot and was most grateful for the gift.  However, it has taken time for me to find and perfect recipes cooked in the Instant Pot. 

There is a talent for cooking in the Instant Pot that must be developed through experience.  Or, I guess some just cook by faith.  Unlike the stove top or oven, you can't see what is happening.  Therefore, you are cooking "blind" and trusting the pot to get it right for you.

I love to cook, but I don't like wasting my time and food on a recipe that my family cannot eat.  When testing a new recipe, I am careful to choose the timing.  I want to make sure there are dinner alternatives available for us should the recipe end in disaster.

I also love cookbooks!  Some might even say I enjoy collecting cookbooks.  Let's face it, not all recipes in any cookbook are wonderfully perfect for every family.  If I see a few recipes in a cookbook that I want to try, I'll buy it.  Therefore, I do have a very nice collection of cookbooks.

One of my most recent cookbook acquisitions was another gift from my parents.  They gave me two new cookbooks for Christmas this year.  One of them was the "Taste of Home Instant Pot Cookbook".  My son also gave me two new cookbooks.  Christmas night I was sitting on the couch with my mom pouring over my new cookbooks and getting really excited about testing new recipes.  I have tiny post-its poking out in all of them that mark recipes I want to try, but I started with a recipe from my Taste of Home Instant Pot Cookbook .


Recipes in the Taste of Home Instant Pot Cookbook 

 Taste of Home Instant Pot Cookbook:
Over 100 Recipes Made Easy in the Instant Pot
Check Price
The first meal I cooked was a Cranberry-Mustard Pork Loin.  It was delicious!  We will be having that meal again.  It took less than an hour to prepare and cook the pork loin.  The sauce was quite unique and one I would expect a professional chef to devise.

The second recipe I tried was a little more risky in my opinion.  I've never been keen on mushrooms and the recipe for the Beef Tips called for Portobello mushrooms.  After reading the ingredients and instructions several times, I decided to try it.  After all, I could shove all of mushrooms onto my husband's plate since they are cut into slices.  It just sounded too delicious to pass up.  The Beef Tip recipe is the best new recipe I have cooked in decades!  

The savory beef tips are served over, or alongside, mashed potatoes with the thickened sauce they cooked in.  This meal is so easy to prepare, and again, in an hour.

Both of these meals taste like you spent hours cooking and years to perfect.  They were both fabulous on the first try.  No wasted time or food.  And no need for multiple tests and trials before I got them right.  They were excellent prepared exactly the way the cookbook recipe instructed.

The only concern or challenge I have had with this cookbook is choosing what to cook next!

Beef Tips Instant Pot RecipeBeef Tips Instant Pot RecipeCreamy & Delicious Mashed Potatoes RecipeCreamy & Delicious Mashed Potatoes Recipe


Using the Taste of Home Instant Pot Cookbook 

The inside cover of this cookbook has "flaps" that can be used as bookmarks. I find them extremely helpful, especially when cooking a specific recipe and referring back to the page for more directions.

This cookbook, like all of the Instant Pot cookbooks I have, uses generic terms like "select manual setting".  I don't have a manual on my Instant Pot, but I have learned that means "PressureCook" on my cooker's settings.  I can only assume this varies by brand, model, or age of manufacturing. 

I recommend reading through the recipe completely before you begin cooking so you know what to expect.

I also recommend pre-measuring ingredients and setting them around your pot.  It would be easy to overlook an ingredient in a recipe, but if you have it already sitting out, you will notice it before you close and lock your lid.  Keep in mind, Instant Pot cooking is not like simmering a pot of stew all day.  You can't add a forgotten ingredient an hour into cooking and it not matter.

 

For additional Instant Pot tips, click here and read the section entitled "Instant Pot Use Tips".  
For the Beef Tips Recipe and Preparation Tips mentioned above, click here.





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Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Smoking Meat for Beginners Book Review

Smoking Meat for Beginners Book Review
Everyone knows that I have a passion for preserving old family recipes. These are recipes passed down from my grandmother, mother, and aunts. You can find these old family recipes along with some new ones on my blog, Sam's Places.

During grilling season here in Western NY I love cooking on my grill. I'm always looking for new ideas and recipes to try on the grill.

A few years ago I started to follow David Farrell's blog oldfatguy.ca. I quickly became a fan and very interested in David's recipes and methods of smoking meats.

At the time I didn't have a smoker, I had a gas grill. I really wanted to try one of David's methods. So I followed his method for his 3-2-1 Spareribs on my gas grill. I picked up some wood chips wrapped them in tinfoil then poked some holes in them. 

I followed his method for seasoning, temperature to maintain, and cooking time. They were delicious and I was hooked.

 

The Old Fat Guy's Guide To Smoking Meat For Beginners

When his book came out I couldn't wait to buy it. I knew that I wanted a smoker but had no idea what type of smoker to buy. After reading the very first section of the book where David explains the benefits and downsides of every type of smoker. I decided that I wanted an offset smoker.

Char-Griller Offset Smoker


 And, low and behold, for Father's Day my daughter bought me this Char-Griller offset smoker. Now I was all set. 
 I had the book and the smoker.

The next part of the book will explain all about accessories for your smoker. What you need from temperature control, cleaning your equipment, cooking utensils, types of wood for smoking, and much more.

Then, David tells us how to get your smoker ready no matter what smoker you have. There is a whole section dedicated to food safety. I found this to be very helpful with tips on cross-contamination, dangerous ingredients, and improper storage.

You will find classic recipes and methods along with appetizers, rubs, sauces, and marinades. Read about David's many successes and some of his failures along the way. 

This is my go-to book along with David's blog whenever I'm preparing to smoke something. You'll find this book easy to read and non-technical. This is a perfect gift idea for not only beginners, but even the most experienced smokers will find useful information in this book.

The Old Fat Guy's Guide to Smoking Meat for BeginnersThe Old Fat Guy's Guide to Smoking Meat for BeginnersThe Old Fat Guy's Guide to Smoking Meat for Beginners

 

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Monday, December 23, 2019

Feast Of The Seven Fishes Book Review

Is your family archive of recipes full of recipes tucked away in notebooks, on napkins, folded pieces of paper and the old school recipe cards? And haven't you always wanted to turn those treasured recipes into a book along with the family memories?


Book cover of Feast Of The Seven Fishes with old family photos and fish on the cover.


In Feast Of The Seven Fishes a families' authentic Italian recipes are shared in combination with the stories of each recipe and the neighborhood which shaped this family and its' traditions.


Memoir + Cookbook

Feast Of The Seven Fishes: A Brooklyn Italian's Recipes Celebrating Food & Family by Daniel Paterna is a combination memoir and cookbook. This is the story of the community of Bensonhurst in Brooklyn and the impact the community had upon the author and his family through the generations. Food, family and community are interwoven with delightful neighborhood anecdotes with the impact of remembering history for those who grew up in Bensonhurst and to preserve it for future generations.

The story of Bensonhurst will resonate if your Grandma, food, family dinners and family owned neighborhood shops were apart of your community. It is rare for a cookbook to read as a memoir and vice versa which is what makes this combination so unique and enjoyable.


The Recipes

Do you have a treasure trove of family recipes written or typed on the old school index recipe cards? I suspect you do and the photos of this families' recipes handwritten on index cards certainly evoke fond memories of my Grandma and Mom's favorite recipes! And of course there are the personalized "notes" on the cards ...

The authentic Italian recipes are detailed throughout the journey of the neighborhood as the author recalls the family food shops which were an integral and historical part of the family recipes. 

Take a journey through each major holiday and the traditional Italian recipes which accompany each holiday.  The chapter with a compilation of Feast Of The Seven Fishes recipes is amazing and slightly intimidating (due to the number of dishes) for one who has never cooked such a feast! However, the recipes are inspiring to all cooks to either compare your family recipe or for those seeking authentic Italian recipes.

I am excited to cook these recipes and up my cooking game with authentic Italian recipes! Memoir fans and cookbook fans are sure to enjoy this book. This is a perfect gift for those who want real Italian recipes - old school - and aren't those recipes usually the best!

I received this book from the Publisher in exchange for an unbiased review.


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Monday, November 25, 2019

Favorite TV Show Cookbooks

I love finding new recipes and I particularly love finding home cooking family recipes! Cooking shows have become quite a business with channels devoted to cooking 24/7, but are the recipes good?

I separate TV Show Cooks from Celebrity Cooks as cooks who became popular because of their TV show versus a celebrity introducing a cookbook as part of their brand.



Defining a good recipe is of course subjective, but some of the main components for me of a good recipe include: easy, real ingredients, affordable and authentic. I'll never forget one of the first recipes I tried from a TV show tasted wonderful; however it was one of the most time consuming recipes I have ever made with expensive ingredients I had to search the city to obtain. Easy and affordable it was not.

However, I am now a more seasoned cook and recipe evaluator and always love a 'good' cookbook. There is still nothing like a full size cookbook to give or receive; the internet is quick and convenient to find recipes, but is not the same experience of reading a cookbook.

There are a few TV Show Cookbooks I regularly visit and find the recipes promise as deliver. I also am a fan of their TV Show and regularly watch their shows.

Here are a few of my favorites:

Home Cooking With Trisha Yearwood 

Love these recipes! I am a fan of Trisha's family recipes. I also enjoy watching the cooking show with Trisha.

Home Cooking is full of family recipes made with recognizable ingredients, but with their family tweak on
the recipes.

Yummy southern cooking!



Fun snack recipe >> Sweet And Saltines Recipe




In The Kitchen With David: Comfort Foods That Take You Home

David Venable is QVC's Foodie and cooking show host. I stumbled upon David's show and the show became a favorite as I love to look at the new kitchen gadgets; unfortunately for QVC I am a watcher not a buyer, but did purchase and enjoy David's cookbook.


 Who said comfort food!

All recipes are easy and true comfort food.

When I am searching for an old or new comfort food recipe I turn to this cookbook for ideas.

David's classic recipe >> Mashed Potatoes Three Ways






Pioneer Woman A Year Of Holidays

I am a fan of the Pioneer Woman. Real ingredients with no apologies. There is a place for real butter, real cream and all things comfort food (in moderation of course!)

What is nice about this cookbook is the organization by holiday.

A Year Of Holidays is a great resource for traditional and perhaps new ideas for your holiday menu.

All meals of a holiday are covered in each chapter which is so clever and reader friendly.

A favorite Pioneer Woman recipe >> Perfect Pot Roast Recipe






Any of these three cookbooks make a great gift for your favorite cook! Bon Appetit!




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Friday, March 15, 2019

Minestrone Soup Recipe for the Instant Pot

Minestrone Soup Recipe for the Instant Pot
When Bev reviewed the Instant Pot here on Review This Reviews, I knew I had to have one too!  It immediately went on my own Christmas wish list.

Mom and Dad granted my wish and gifted me with an Instant Pot, plus a fabulous Instant Pot Cookbook by Jennifer Smith.  It is listed as a #1 Best Seller on Amazon and there is an excellent reason why.  It truly is packed full of great recipes for the Instant Pot, as well as tips and Instant Pot use instructions.  I was extremely grateful for the use instructions!  The instructions that came with the cooker were not as clear as Jennifer Smith's instructions in her published cookbook.

One great recipe in my new cookbook is the Minestrone Soup recipe.  One of my all time favorite soups is minestrone soup, but before I had my Instant Pot, I had never made it at home.  It was always a specialty that I treated myself to when we dined at our favorite Italian restaurant.  However, I no longer have to dine out to have excellent minestrone soup!  


Minestrone Soup Recipe from the Instant Pot Cookbook
by Jennifer Smith 
 

Minestrone Soup Recipe for the Instant Pot
I made few changes to Jennifer Smith's minestrone soup recipe, but they were simple changes.  I add more carrots and less onion.  Plus, I leave out the garlic completely.  I've never been a fan of garlic and find that I prefer this soup without it.

I am sharing my version of the Minestrone Soup recipe for the Instant Pot, but you can certainly have Jennifer Smith's original version if you wish to purchase the cookbook.  It really is worth buying.  There are several other great recipes in it that I have already tried and love.  Without it, I might have ended up returning my Instant Pot.  The recipes and instructions that came with it were confusing and unappetizing. 



Minestrone Soup Instant Pot Recipe


Ingredients

  • 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1/2 of a White Onion
  • 2 Celery Stalks, diced
  • 2 large Carrots, diced
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • 28 oz can Diced Tomatoes
  • 1/2 Cup Fresh Spinach, chopped
  • 1 Cup Elbow Pasta or Bow Tie Pasta (bow tie shown, but either is delicious)
  • 4 Cups Vegetable Broth (I use Simple Truth Organic)
  • 1 Bay Leaf
  • 15 oz can White Beans  (I use Great Northern Beans)

 Directions

  1. Preheat the Instant Pot by selecting Saute.  Add & heat the oil 
  2. Add the onion, celery & carrots.  Saute for 5-6 minutes in the heated oil, stirring constantly
  3. Stir in basil, oregano, salt & pepper
  4. Stir in diced tomatoes, chopped spinach, pasta, broth & bay leaf
  5. Press the Cancel button to stop the Saute function
  6. Close and lock the lid.  Select Pressurecook button and cook on high for 6 minutes  (note:  it takes a few minutes to heat to cooking temperate.  The cooker timer will not start counting down until it reaches the high temperature.)
  7. When the timer beeps, let the soup sit for 2 minutes, then use the quick release valve on the lid to completely release the very hot steam.  Carefully unlock and left the lid.
  8. Add the White Beans and stir
  9. Remove the Bay Leaf that was used for seasoning.  They are not very tasty to eat.

Now, it is ready to serve!



Instant Pot Use Tips
Based on My Personal Experience


The Instant Pot has a few things that are totally different than any other cooker that I have ever used. 

Instant Pot Lid Diagram - Minestrone Soup Recipe
First to note is the steam release valve on the top.  There is a lot of hot steam and pressure that builds up inside the pot and that hot steam must be released before you unlock the lid.  The Instant Pot makes that easy with the release value on the lid, but you need to stand back away from the steam.  I also recommend pulling it out and away from the underside of your top kitchen cabinets.  It will cause a moisture buildup on your cabinets if you allow the steam to release under the cabinet.  The steam release takes at least 30 seconds to fully disperse.  There is a secondary pop-up valve indicator on the lid that lets you know when it is safe to open the lid.

Second to note is the timer and recipe cook time.  The recipes tell you the cook time, but that time does not include the heating time.  The Instant Pot temperature must reach the cooking point before the timer will start counting down.  That takes several additional minutes for my Instant Pot.


Instant Pot Control Panel - Minestrone Soup Recipe
Third to note is the difference in the recipes cooking selection buttons versus how my Instant Pot buttons are labeled.  For instance, this recipe states to "select Manual", but my Instant Pot button is labeled "Pressurecook".  I am guessing that is based on the age or model of your Instant Pot.  You will need to familiarize yourself with your Instant Pot buttons before you start cooking with these recipes.

Selecting and Setting the Timer is a little confusing at first.  It is like a digital alarm clock or automobile clock.  You turn the knob to make a selection on the display and then press the knob to change the timer numbers.  Perhaps that is just me, but I thought mine was broken the first time I used it.
 

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More Instant Pot Soup Recipes



A delicious recipe for potato soup cooked in an InstantPot will delight your taste buds and fill your tummy.

Potato Soup Cooked In InstantPot ReviewedInstant Pot Easy Chicken Noodle Soup
This instant pot easy chicken noodle soup will surely warm you up on those cold winter days. We are just loving our new Instant Pot.




Minestrone Soup Recipe for the Instant Pot Written by:
House of Sylvestermouse







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Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Magnolia Table Cookbook Reviewed

Delightful Recipes To Cook

cooking
Cooking For Family
Joanna Gaines can do more than decorate a home! I would like to review her cookbook Magnolia Table for you all today.

I received this cookbook for Mother's Day this year and was thrilled to get it. I am a huge fan of Joanna and her husband Chip. I have probably watched every single episode of their popular television show "Fixer Upper" at least three or four times. Sure, I love to see how the two work together to remodel a house for a client into a home that the new owners will love for years to come. There is more to it than that, though. I love the example the two give in each episode of two people who love each other. Through each episode they show how a couple can and should be partners in life; they have taken it further by actually being in business together for an even stronger partnership. Their love of family is apparent, too. I greatly admire both of them. 

It amazes me that with all of the different little businesses that Joanna has going plus raising her children (which by the way is about to grow) that she has time to cook at all. Cook, she does and from the recipes in the cookbook I would say she does it well.

Not only does Joanna share recipes that she cooks with love for Chip and the kids but she adds little messages about each recipe. For instance, she tells about how she kept trying to perfect the biscuit recipe until she finally got it right...she knew it was right when everyone in the family voiced their approval. There is a sweet little message about her oldest son Drake going to summer camp and writing home telling her that he missed her and asking for her to make a certain dish when he got home. She shares that Chip loves breakfast and wants the entire family to start their day together sharing breakfast every morning. So, this is way more than just another cookbook!

I haven't had time to try many of the recipes yet but I am working on it. This weekend I fixed the Three Cheese Quiche recipe. Oh my word it was delicious! It was extremely easy to make and filled the kitchen with a scrumptious aroma as it baked. The final test was how would my husband like it. You see, he is a strong "meat and potatoes" kind of guy. He wrinkled up his nose when I said I was making  a quiche so I had my fingers crossed. After his first bite, he remarked that it was good but not with a lot of enthusiasm. I thought, "Well shoot, I guess this will be a recipe that I will make when the kids come home." Personally, I thought it was a slice of heaven. So, when he finished the first piece and asked for a second; I almost fell out of my chair! He actually loved it! I have to admit my eyes leaked a little.

I highly recommend this cookbook for your kitchen. I think you will enjoy making the recipes inside but most of all you will enjoy eating them! This cookbook would be an excellent gift for a new bride or someone who is moving into their first home away from home. I know I love my copy which is even more special because my family made sure that I got a signed first edition. Wasn't that sweet? They know how much I admire Joanna as a woman so they took that extra step as an act of love. Something that I share with Joanna is the love of my family and the joy of cooking for them. 



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Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Pie Cookbook Reviewed

To Celebrate National Pie Day Or Any Day

fruit pie
Fruit Pie image courtesy of Pixabay.com
As I write this on January 23rd, I will start out with Happy Pie Day! I'm going to be telling you about a Pie cookbook a little further down the page but first let's talk about pie. 

Personally, I prefer pie over cake. One year when my birthday was approaching my grandmother asked me what kind of cake I wanted. I looked at her for a minute and said, "I would really rather have a black raspberry pie, Grandma." She laughed her wonderful laugh that made her whole body move and her eyes twinkle. We shared a birthday, my grandmother and I, which happened to be in April. That is not the time of year that one finds black raspberries. I did not get a pie that year but every year after until she went to heaven in 1990, that dear woman baked me a black raspberry pie for our birthday. 

A few years back another of our Contributors here at Review This told us a lot about National Pie Day. I won't repeat what she wrote about but instead will recommend a cookbook that you might like to own in order to make your own pies whether it is for National Pie Day or any day of the year.

There are over 100 recipes in this delightful cookbook. Of course you can find traditional types of pie with both sweet and savory fillings. The author also includes more modern versions of pies like pie-pops and pie-in-a-jar. I think you will be delighted with the recipes no matter if your favorite is a fruit pie, a cream pie or a meat pie. The author, Sherry Gore, covers them all in her delightful cookbook.

Another feature of this wonderful cookbook is that the author shares personal stories of her Amish life and the culture of people. For me, that is a nice bonus!

How do you plan to spend National Pie Day? Will you bake a pie for your family or will you go to a local bakery to get a pie? I plan to bake a black raspberry pie and have happy thoughts of my wonderful grandmother. 



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Friday, October 20, 2017

Ghoulish Goodies Halloween Cookbook Review

Ghoulish Goodies Halloween Cookbook Review
Halloween is the perfect time to great really creative in the kitchen. 

One of my favorite Halloween cookbooks is Ghoulish Goodies because it is chock full of fabulously frightful Halloween recipes and decorating ideas. From spooky yet cute, to ghoulishly grotesque, there is something for every Halloween party or gathering featured in the cookbook. 

The front cover of the cookbook gives a very accurate description of what you can expect to find within the book.  However, there is so much more than just what you see there.  The back cover gives you a bit more insight, but honestly, until you look inside the book, you will not appreciate how truly fantastic this cookbook really is for Halloween. 

Let me show you some of my favorite recipes in the book.  Keep in mind, there are a lot more in the book though.  The features in the collage below just happen to be my personal choices.


Ghoulish Goodies Halloween Cookbook Review
This Collage was Created with Scanned Images from the Actual Cookbook


Ghoulish Goodies Cookbook


Ghoulish Goodies Cookbook<br> Paperback or Kindle Version Available!Ghoulish Goodies Cookbook
Paperback or Kindle Version Available!
Check Price
This really is a fantastic Halloween cookbook and one that every Halloween hostess should own.  Each recipe gives the exact ingredients required, along with easy to follow instructions for creating these Halloween fun food masterpieces.

It also includes lots of decorating tips alongside the individual recipes.  For instance, it tells you exactly how to make the "super grass" used on the Ghost Graveyard cake (upper right corner of the collage above).  

There are extra recipes included for dipping sauces, plus tips for decorative tray presentation.  The presentation suggestions could easily be incorporated with other Halloween food.  

Believe it or not, the author didn't stop there.  She has also included a section for Halloween supper.  Some of dinner recipes feature Candy Corn Pizza, Orange Rice, or Ghost Mashed Potatoes.  This would be a really fun supper to serve.  Although I must admit, the meatloaf with an unblinking eyeball might me just a little too grotesque for even this Halloween Hostess.

Do I sound excited to review this book?  You bet I am!  But, I am more excited about getting into the kitchen and making my own Ghoulish Goodies from this cookbook. 

Ghoulish Goodies Halloween Cookbook Review
 


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Ghoulish Goodies Halloween Cookbook Review


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Ghoulish Goodies Halloween Cookbook Review Written by:
House of Sylvestermouse





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Friday, September 22, 2017

Cupcake Cakes Cookbook Review

Cupcake Cakes Cookbook Review
Cupcakes have always been a favored treat for school days, parties, or just for dessert. They are even better when they are arranged to make a fun design. 

Consider the cupcake cake on the front of the Cupcake Cakes cookbook.  It looks like an ice cream cone, but in fact it is 18 cupcakes frosted and arranged in a delightful design pattern.  And, seriously!  What could be easier?  10 chocolate cupcakes, 7 strawberry cupcakes and 1 cherry frosted cupcake.  Once decorated with the Good & Fruity candy that looks like sprinkles, you have made a beautiful ice cream cone cake.  Truly fabulous! 


Using Store Bought Cupcakes 


I normally make my own cupcakes, but if you find yourself in a rush, you could simply buy cupcakes from the grocery store or bakery.  Purchase whatever decoration candy is needed and the necessary frosting color, and whip out that cake design in no time.  Using the ice cream cone cupcake cake again as the example, it would be extremely easy to buy chocolate and strawberry cupcakes, the Good & Fruity candy, and a can or tube of cherry frosting.  This is perfect for the mom who is required to bring cupcakes for the classroom party, but doesn't have time to bake.


The Cupcake Cakes Cookbook 

The Cupcake Cake Cookbook - Inside the cookbook
I own several cookbooks that include cupcake cakes, but this is my personal favorite.  All of the cupcake cake designs are easy to replicate, yet they are adorable.  

The book is fairly small compared to other cookbooks, plus it is lightweight.  That makes it extremely easy to grab and carry to a party or school destination if you need it for reference when assembling the cake.  

It has a spiral binding inside the cover which makes the book lay open flat.  Anyone who has ever fought to keep a cookbook open to a specific page knows just how fabulous an internal spiral binding is to the chef.

Cupcake Cakes has instructions for 25 different cupcake cakes and each one is awesome.  I love all of the animal designs myself, but there is also a wizards hat for Harry Potter fans, a flower bouquet cupcake cake and a princess crown for girls.  There is even a treasure chest cupcake cake design which would be perfect for a scavenger hunt party or pirate themed party.

Cupcake Cakes Cookbook Review


Buy Your Own Copy of Cupcake Cakes 

The book is available for a Kindle, but I recommend the actual hardcover book since there are color pictures.  Of course, if you have a Kindle Fire, that is not an issue since it shows pictures in color. 


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Cupcake Cakes Cookbook Review Written by:
House of Sylvestermouse





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Saturday, September 2, 2017

Review of Our Favorite Seafood Dip ~ with Recipe




Homemade Clam Dip & Chips



Family Game Night Snacks (c) Elf
The gathering of family and friends over holidays, for special events and celebrations, or for card & game nights, calls for finger food type snacks. 

The quickest and most popular of these type of snacks are what we all like to refer to as 'chips & dip'.

Many years ago our grocery store carried, along with your typical onion dip and guacamole dip, a creamy cream cheese type dip with clams. The seafood lovers in my family absolutely loved it. Somewhere along the line the store-bought clam dip disappeared from the dairy section, probably due to lack of popularity as not everyone likes clams. (Can't imagine that, but it's true!). :-)

We really missed not being able to buy clam dip any more, so I got to pondering on it and figured out it couldn't be that hard to come up with my own version. Using some suggestions from an appetizer cook book for seafood-type dips, this 'homemade clam dip' is what I 'invented'. My family and friends liked it so much that it has become the 'expected' snack item at our house for any time we get together. It's best served with ripple-style chips and/or pretzels because it is a bit 'stiffer' than some dips and the regular chips break apart too easily while 'dipping'.


My son recently called me long distance because he couldn't find his copy of my recipe and needed a review of the ingredients for the batch he was making. Others have asked for the recipe too, so I decided to share it here. Hope you enjoy it at your next gathering.


RECIPE For Clam Dip


Ingredients
Ingredients


  • 1 (or 2) 8-ounce package Cream cheese, softened
  • 8 ounce tub Sour cream, Use 'light' version, if desired
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Lemon Juice, bottled or Fresh
  • 3 or 4 Scallions or Green Onions, chopped
  • Dash Pepper
  • 1 or 2 cans Canned Clams, drained
  • Large Bag Ripple-style Potato Chips and/or Pretzels


Instructions


  1. Place opened package of cream cheese in a medium bowl to soften.
  2. Finely chop 3 or 4 fresh scallions (or green onions). Amount depends on your personal preference.
  3. When cream cheese is soft enough to work with, add the chopped green onions, Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice and pepper. Stir to mix.
  4. Add the sour cream a few spoonfuls at a time, stirring into the cream cheese mixture.
  5. Continue adding sour cream until the dip is the consistency you prefer. Some like it stiffer, somewhat like a spread you could serve on crackers; others like it soft enough to use with chips and pretzels.
  6. When the dip is mixed to the consistency you like, add the clams (drained, but allow a tiny bit of clam juice to remain for a nice extra flavor).
  7. Cover and refrigerate for several hours or overnight to allow the flavors to nicely blend. Stir once again before serving with the chips and/or pretzels.
+Cook's Note: I often double the recipe, depending upon the size of the group I am serving it to, as you will find it gets eaten quickly! :)

*Extra Note: We like lots of clams in our dip, so I prepare it with two cans, but one can works just as well.



Cook Time

Prep time: 30 min

Ready in: 30 min

Yield: Serves 4-6 people

Clam Dip ready to eat and enjoy!




Cream cheese dips, clam and otherwise, are my favorite kinds of dip.

I made a batch of my clam dip for a recent visit from my son & family. It's our favorite snack and is always expected.





Chips and Other Dips!




Source: Pixabay

If clams are not your favorite, there are lots of other kinds of dips from spinach and guacamole to onion dip to salsas. Any dip and combination of chips (potato, tortilla, pretzels) make great finger food snacks for any kind of party or get-together.







Dip Cookbook




Available on Amazon


Dips is a dip cookbook with more than 40 recipes ranging from quick & easy dips to fancy party dips.  A cookbook filled with dip recipes for any party or occasion.


Are you a fan of 'chips & dips?'  What is your favorite kind of dip? 


For a variety of other kinds of appetizers, check out these fabulous appetizer reviews compiled for your snacking pleasure here on







National Chip and Dip Day is


March 23


Originally written © 2013 Wednesday-Elf.  Updated for Review This! on 3/25/2020




Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


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Monday, May 1, 2017

Pati's Mexican Table Review

I love food but I'm not a foodie. I enjoy cooking and baking but I'm not very good at it. I need recipes that are easy to follow with explanations of any "exotic" ingredients. You may wonder why I am writing a cooking show and cookbook review if I struggle in the kitchen. Well, that is exactly why I want to share what I know about Pati's Mexican Table. Pati Jinich takes some of the mystery out of Mexican cooking and presents it in a way that is easy and delicious.

Pati's Mexican Table Review


Pati's Mexican Table is a cooking show on public television channels. This weekend I was very fortunate to find a cooking show marathon that featured Pati's cooking shows back-to-back. I was in tamale heaven! And I had forgotten about creative gelatin desserts. With Cinco de Mayo approaching, she made me crave authentic Mexican food. 

Many of the recipes featured on the show are listed on her website. While the internet makes finding recipes a snap, there is something I really like about having either a cookbook or a printed recipe. I don't seem to lose track of where I am or what I'm doing if the printed recipe is with me in the kitchen while I cook.

That's why I am thrilled to see that she has two cookbooks offered for sale. 

Pati's Mexican Table is a cookbook filled with authentic Mexican recipes. Customer reviews are highly complimentary of this cookbook. The notable "pros" about this cookbook are the very helpful "cook's tricks" and the sidebars that explain ingredients or cooking techniques. These extra instructions are helpful in successfully making the recipe. One of the few "cons" listed by a few reviewers is that this cookbook does not list all/exactly the recipes shown on the television show.

Pati's Mexican Table cookbook

Mexican Today


Pati's second cookbook, Mexican Today: New and Rediscovered Recipes for Contemporary Kitchens offers authentic Mexican favorite recipes with a contemporary twists. Again, the cookbook features helpful advice and sidebars that are especially helpful for those of use who aren't formally trained in the kitchen.

Authentic Mexican food is plentiful when I travel to the area I was raised. When I am away from that area, I find myself missing authentic Mexican food. With Pati's television show and cookbooks for inspiration, even I should be able to make some delicious meals for Cinco de Mayo and all through the year. 

Mexican Today cookbook by Pati Jinich

Related Link:


There is a good chance you are already familiar with Pati Jinich and her cooking show. But just in case you aren't, here is a quick introduction to her easy recipes and down-home style:





Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


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