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Make It Ahead: A Barefoot Contessa Cookbook by Ina Garten

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Notes about this book

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Notes about Recipes in this book

  • Parmesan kale chips

    • Breadcrumbs on July 20, 2015

      p. 28 - I picked up some beautiful Cavolo Nero at the farmer’s market and needed a quick and easy recipe to make use of it. This recipe fit the bill and complimented the Italian inspired menu I’d planned. We especially liked the use of Parmesan in this version of kale chips. I left the leaves whole, which made for a nice presentation. Photo here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/1019558?commentId=9648409#9648409

  • Caesar salad with blue cheese and bacon

    • Breadcrumbs on January 01, 2015

      P. 43 – Ina’s dressing is delicious with a wonderful tang due to the 1/2cup of lemon juice. I just wasn’t sold on the Roquefort with a Caesar…not sure we need to mess with a good thing. For the very first time, Ina and I will have to agree to disagree!! Love that the dressing will “last for days” in the refrigerator. It does make quite a bit so it’s particularly handy to have on hand over the holidays. A hearty salad is just a few moments away if unexpected guests arrive. Photos here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/1000517?commentId=9363146#9363146

  • Wild mushroom and farro soup

    • kayanelson on November 15, 2014

      A nice hearty soup. It's good but not spectacular. But I would make it again.

    • Laraaline on January 03, 2015

      I made this with 1/2 the creme fraiche that was called for and it was still delicious! I would like to make with homemade beef broth next time.

  • Cauliflower and celery root soup

    • swegener on December 30, 2014

      Really good, and simple. Though celery root might as well be made of gold for how expensive it is around here.

    • MelissaM0223 on February 03, 2016

      Delicious! I did half celery root / half turnip, and added a little bit more cream than suggested.

  • Ham and leek empanadas

    • MVitek on January 28, 2015

      Used Oscar's Smokehouse pork loin.

  • Herbed pork tenderloins with apple chutney

    • gastronom on March 05, 2015

      Very good. Recommend you make her apple chutney, too--good combo

  • Apple chutney

    • gastronom on March 05, 2015

      Excellent. Crowd enjoyed it with her pork tenderloin.

  • Grilled New York strip steaks

    • anya_sf on June 25, 2017

      My steaks must have been smaller because 3 steaks served 3-4 people, not 6, so choose your steaks accordingly. Although I asked the butcher for 1.5" thick, only 1 steak was that thick, another was 1.25", the third closer to 1". I have a gas grill, so grilled them on high for 2 minutes each side, then on low for 8 minutes. The temperature of the thickest steak was 125 degrees. After resting 10 minutes, they were perfectly medium-rare. I think Ina's temperatures are a bit off. My husband and I thought these were fantastic. Our son found the spices to be too spicy. You could probably reduce the chile powder and red pepper flakes a bit and it would still be great. You could also use thinner steaks, but in that case I'd use less spice mixture, as the flavor is quite strong, and of course adjust the grilling time.

  • Roasted vegetable lasagna

    • anya_sf on July 06, 2017

      I prepped the lasagna 6 hrs ahead. Doubled the zucchini, as 3/4 lb didn't seem like enough - glad I did. "Only" used 1/2 cup olive oil for vegetables. Soaked the noodles in the lasagna pan using very hot tap water + instant hot water (didn't take water temperature), then lay on waxed paper for assembly. Mixed ricotta filling by hand - no need to dirty mixer. Lasagna looked watery before baking, but definitely wasn't watery when done. My pan was extra big, so I didn't place it on a sheet pan, as there was no danger of overflow. It was super cheesy and delicious. In our house, this only served 6 people.

  • Spinach and ricotta noodle pudding

    • MVitek on December 05, 2014

      Tasty. Used a thicker, homestyle noodle.

  • Roasted baby bok choy

    • Delys77 on February 11, 2016

      Interesting approach. Avoids having to stir fry when you are working on several other dishes.

  • Crusty baked potatoes with whipped feta

    • anya_sf on June 24, 2017

      It isn't necessary to mix the herbs in a mini processor - just as easy to do it by hand. I baked 3 potatoes but made all the herb mixture because I thought a lot would fall off. A surprising amount actually stuck, so the outsides were quite salty, although it was easy to brush some off. But with the bland potato, the salt level was OK. The herbs complemented the whipped feta quite well. I also served sauteed spinach, which really went well with the potato. The only thing about the herbs is that they do get a bit overly brown with the long baking time, although at least they did not burn.

  • Whipped feta

    • anya_sf on June 25, 2017

      I used Buglarian feta,which was probably a mistake, as it was fairly dry and salty. The mixture ended up grainy. I did not like the flavor on its own. However, it was pretty good with the herbed baked potatoes, and also with spinach that I served on the side. Definitely follow Ina's instruction to use Greek feta on this.

  • Gingered basmati rice

    • anya_sf on August 06, 2017

      I used tarragon instead of thyme because I had some on hand. I couldn't really taste the tarragon, though, when the rice was done. I only had 2 c chicken stock (canned), so used water for the rest. I used Texmati brown rice (expensive!), as Ina suggests. The rice was just cooked after 45 min, so I let the pot sit, covered, for an extra 10 min to allow the liquid to fully absorb. The texture was perfect after that. It was fairly flavorful for rice. The ginger flavor wasn't super strong. It made a nice accompaniment for Eli's Asian Salmon.

  • Baked farro and butternut squash

    • ksg518 on December 19, 2016

      This is very good and, as Ina notes, substantial enough to be a main course. I used some kabocha squash I already had in addition to some butternut squash. If I had one tweak it would be to add the squash about 10 minutes after the farro has been in the oven so it stays a little firmer.

  • Leek and artichoke bread pudding

    • MVitek on December 05, 2014

      Good. Doubled the artichokes.

  • Skillet brownies

    • anya_sf on July 06, 2017

      My skillets were smaller, 3.5" across top. Made 1/2 recipe, fit 3 skillets perfectly. Used TJ's chips. Melted chocolate and butter in microwave (to me, that's faster and easier), stirring every 20-30 sec. Assembled 2 hrs ahead. Ina doesn't say whether to grease the pans, but I did, and I think that was helpful. I wasn't sure how long to bake the smaller skillets - after 17 min, they seemed like the right doneness (edges dry but center still soft). They were fabulous with vanilla ice cream! IMO, these were the perfect individual serving size - think the larger skillets would have been too much of a good thing. The only con to this recipe is that there's more crusty brownie edge relative to gooey center (I prefer the center). However, the big pro is being able to eat them warm straight from the oven. Anyway, the ice cream softens up the edges, so honestly, I really have no complaints. And they are so cute.

  • Coffee granita

    • anya_sf on July 02, 2017

      Very easy. For coffee lovers. Maybe I didn't rake the mixture often enough, because I had to stab the larger crystals to break them up to get the right texture, which took some extra time. It took about 3 hours total to freeze. We ate it 2 hours later. Also had some the next day and it was still great, so I think it can be made well ahead. The whipped cream is not optional, as it balances the very intense coffee flavor, like the best frappucino. Really delicious.

  • Fresh apple spice cake

    • gastronom on March 05, 2015

      Nice moist cake; unless you love orange flavor, I would skip the orange rind. Found it distracted from the apple flavor.

  • Make-ahead whipped cream

    • anya_sf on July 02, 2017

      Very quick and easy to make. I served it 6 hours later and it was fine (recipe says up to 4 hours). Even the next day, I just quickly rewhipped it a bit and it was fine.

  • Fresh blueberry pie

    • alex9179 on May 26, 2016

      My youngest son requested it for his birthday, although the texture of the blueberries weren't to his liking. The rest of the family loved it and the cassis addition is wonderful.

  • Tres leches cake with berries

    • alex9179 on May 26, 2016

      Rich and delicious. A great dessert to bring to a pot-luck gathering and small pieces will satisfy most.

  • Ginger shortbread

    • anya_sf on June 24, 2017

      I just made 1/3 recipe because I don't usually care for crystallized ginger, but I'm on a quest to make every BC recipe, so I had to try these. My cookies were smaller (2") and I guess I rolled them a bit thinner because I got 18 cookies. I baked them for 18 minutes and some were a bit more brown than desired, but still OK. I should have rotated the pan halfway through. They were actually pretty good - just not my favorite type of shortbread. If you like crystallized ginger, I recommend trying them.

  • English chocolate crisps

    • pistachiopeas on March 23, 2015

      Recipe online: http://barefootcontessa.com/recipes.aspx?RecipeID=1045&S=0

  • Homemade ricotta

    • alex9179 on May 26, 2016

      My go-to ricotta recipe because my only other option is the average Frigo-type. I use it for traditional Italian-American lasagna and it takes it over the top.

  • Make-ahead salt and pepper biscuits

    • anya_sf on May 27, 2017

      I didn't make them ahead; they are very quick to make. Followed mixing directions, but butter was no longer visible in the dough. Dough was quite dry, just barely came together. Nevertheless, it worked, and biscuits were tender. Got 11 biscuits (my cutter was closer to 2"). Took 15 min to bake. Tasty - salt and pepper on top is nice. Still, I wanted extra butter on mine. They'd be great with eggs.

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  • ISBN 10 0307464881
  • ISBN 13 9780307464880
  • Linked ISBNs
  • Published Oct 28 2014
  • Format Hardcover
  • Page Count 272
  • Language English
  • Countries United States
  • Publisher Random House USA Inc
  • Imprint Clarkson Potter

Publishers Text

For the first time, trusted and beloved cookbook author Ina Garten, the Barefoot Contessa, answers the number one question she receives from cooks: Can I make it ahead?

If you’ve ever found yourself stuck in front of the stove at your own party, scrambling to get everything to the table at just the right moment, Ina is here to let you in on her secrets! Thanks to twenty years of running a specialty food store and fifteen years writing cookbooks, she has learned exactly which dishes you can prep, assemble, or cook ahead of time. Whether you’re hosting a party or simply making dinner on a hectic weeknight, Ina gives you lots of amazing recipes that taste just as good—or even better!—when they’re made in advance.

In Make It Ahead, each recipe includes clear instructions for what you can do ahead of time, and how far in advance, so you can cook with confidence and eliminate last-minute surprises. Make a pitcher of Summer Rosé Sangria filled with red berries, let it chill overnight for the flavors to develop, and you have a delicious drink to offer your friends the minute they arrive. Simmer a pot of Wild Mushroom & Farro Soup, enjoy a bowl for lunch, and freeze the rest for a chilly evening. You can prep the kale, Brussels sprouts, and lemon vinaigrette for Winter Slaw ahead of time and simply toss them together before serving. Assemble French Chicken Pot Pies filled with artichokes and fresh tarragon a day in advance and then pop them in the oven half an hour before dinner. And for dessert, everyone needs the recipe for Ina’s Decadent (gluten-free!) Chocolate Cake topped with Make-Ahead Whipped Cream. Ina also includes recipes for the biggest cooking day of the year—Thanksgiving! Her Ultimate Make-Ahead Roast Turkey and Gravy with Onions & Sage may just change your life.

With beautiful photographs and hundreds of invaluable make-ahead tips, this is your new go-to guide for preparing meals that are stress-free yet filled with those fabulously satisfying flavors that you have come to expect from the Barefoot Contessa.



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