The Cook's Illustrated Cookbook: 2,000 Recipes from 20 Years of America's Most Trusted Food Magazine by Cook's Illustrated Magazine

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Notes about Recipes in this book

  • Slow-roasted beef

    • Cheri on December 17, 2011

      Must be salted 24 hours in advance.

    • BethNH on September 29, 2017

      It's easy to make an expensive roast taste delicious. It's much more difficult to take a cheap roast and cook it so that it's moist and tender. Eye of Round roasts are always marked down at my supermarket. I've never known quite how to cook them so they don't turn into leather. This method has you salt the roast for 24 hours prior to cooking (actual time was more like 19 hours). The roast is then cooked in a very low oven and finally finished in the oven with the residual heat after the oven is turned off. At the end of the appointed time, I had a wonderfully cooked roast that was pink, juicy and tender.

    • scparks on February 09, 2013

      Page 389. A temperature prob would be very useful for this recipe.

    • bching on October 24, 2019

      Great technique for delicious rare-roasted sandwich beef.

  • Stuffed thick-cut pork chops

    • Cheri on December 17, 2011

      Must brine for one hour before stuffing. Can be prepared to this point one day ahead

  • Roasted green beans with red onion and walnuts

    • jumali on February 01, 2012

      Easy--red onions added great flavor.

  • Chili con carne

    • jumali on January 24, 2012

      Outstanding. I don't think I can go back to chili with ground beef after trying this.

  • Stir-fried broccoli with chili-garlic sauce

    • jumali on January 07, 2012

      Excellent flavor--I'd use this sauce on a variety of vegetables.

  • Stir-fried pork, green beans, and red bell pepper with gingery oyster sauce

    • jumali on January 04, 2012

      This is one of Cook's Illustrated simpler stir-fries, and it only required a moderate amount of prep. I'd fry the beans for a couple minutes more than called for as they were too crunchy for my taste.

  • Hot fudge pudding cake

    • jumali on January 16, 2012

      One of my family's all-time favorite desserts. Absolutely foolproof--even my husband and 10 yo can make it.

    • Rutabaga on January 13, 2019

      This dessert is so rich - it's delicious, but difficult for me to eat more than a small serving (maybe that's a good thing). Vanilla ice cream is a natural partner here. The cake creates its own chocolate sauce in the bottom of the dish as it bakes, making the perfect ice cream topping.

  • Pasta with tomato, bacon, and onion (Pasta alla Amatriciana)

    • BethNH on April 21, 2018

      This cost me a small fortune to make as my grocery store charged me $12 for Pecorino Romano cheese. The dish was quite easy to make but I can't say that I could taste either the pancetta or the cheese. We all enjoyed it and I'd make it again. It had a spicy fresh flavor.

  • Chinese barbecued pork

    • BethNH on March 31, 2017

      This was absolutely delicious! We all loved it. This is not a weeknight meal as the pork must first marinate, and then spend about 1.5 hours in the oven. It also requires attention during that oven time. The ingredient list is short and not authentic (the glaze actually includes ketchup) but the results are fantastic. I used a 3 lb. pork butt and subbed rice wine for sherry but otherwise followed the recipe. We loved this so much we plan to serve it for Easter instead of ham. p.423

  • Glazed spiral-sliced ham

    • BethNH on September 29, 2017

      Spiral hams don't seem to need much of a recipe as they are already cooked and really only need to be warmed. That being said, I always end up with a dried out ham that is only partially warm. Following the method outlined in this recipe, which involved soaking the ham prior to baking and using an oven bag, I was left with a wonderfully moist ham that was warm all the way through. I'm not very fond of ham but this was truly delicious. I'll never cook a spiral ham any other way.

  • Best baked potatoes

    • BethNH on September 29, 2017

      It seems silly to follow a "recipe" for baked potatoes. Nonetheless, I decided to take a look to see what CI had to say about the humble baked spud. CI says to wash, dry, rub with vegetable oil and bake in a 350 oven for 75 minutes. Only then is one to poke holes in the potatoes to release the steam. I was worried that my potatoes would burst in the oven without poking them ahead of time. Sure enough, one of five potatoes burst open during cooking. It made a mess in the oven. The other four potatoes were very good - fluffier and drier than most baked potatoes. Next time, I'd be sure to poke at least one hole in my potatoes before baking.

  • Scalloped potatoes

    • BethNH on September 29, 2017

      Excellent! Sliced potatoes are simmered on the stove top with onions, spices, chicken stock and cream until the potatoes are fork tender. Only then are the potatoes put in a gratin dish, covered with cheese and put in the oven. I made this in my small Dutch oven which meant it was a one pot dish. Cooking on the stove top sped up the process and ensured the potatoes were cooked through and tender before putting them in the oven to get brown and bubbly. This makes for a much quicker side dish. These were loved by one and all.

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      Excellent. Potatoes are fully tender. Flavors are really wonderful - browned on top and creamy and savory inside. I usually slice the potatoes with my food processor slicing disk - makes for much faster prep. We like the potatoes to be very tender and the top well-browned, so I usually simmer for 30-40 minutes and bake for 30-35 minutes vs. the shorter recipe-specified times. Recipe also handles variation well. It's great with/without the specified onion and garlic. Finely sliced scallions can be substituted for onion for a milder flavor (add to pot with potatoes). I often substitute 2 oz parmesan cheese for the cheddar cheese. A tablespoon of crumbled dried herbes de Provence works great in place of the thyme, as does a mixture of finely chopped fresh rosemary, thyme and savory. Also nice - this is a good dish in which to use previously frozen heavy cream. Leftovers are great and also freeze well for potatoes. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Indoor chicken fajitas

    • BethNH on September 29, 2017

      Chicken breasts are marinated in a mixture of lime juice, oil, cilantro, garlic and Worcestershire sauce before being cooked on top of the stove. The onions and peppers are fried separately with some of the marinade added for flavor. This wasn't our favorite fajita recipe. The chicken really didn't have much flavor from the marinade and cooking the chicken breasts whole meant that it was difficult to keep the outside from over cooking before the interior was cooked. We have had better fajitas which involved a dry rub and cooking the chicken after it had been sliced. These fajitas were fine but I wouldn't bother cooking them again.

    • sturlington on February 03, 2013

      Easy to make. I enjoyed these with cheese and avocado slices added. Made 2/2013.

  • Grilled sausages with onions

    • BethNH on September 29, 2017

      This is one of our favorite family recipes from Cooks Illustrated Magazine. I'm pretty happy that it's been included in this compendium so I don't have to find the correct magazine every time I want to make it. We loved grilled sausages but always have a hard time grilling them as they either burn or remain raw in the middle. This method has the sausages cook in a disposable pan on a bed of onions. After this, the sausages are moved to the grill to brown while the onions remain in the pan until the liquid evaporates. In the end, you get nicely cooked sausages and well flavored onions. It's a perfect summer time dinner.

    • sturlington on May 25, 2013

      Requires a microwave.

  • Quick and easy cream biscuits

    • BethNH on September 29, 2017

      These have to be the easiest biscuits ever. Remembering that I had some heavy cream in the fridge that needed to be used up, I did a quick search for cream biscuits. The dough comes together in about 2 minutes - including gathering ingredients and measuring flour. Basically, the cream is added to the dry ingredients. This is mixed and then kneaded for 30 seconds before patting out the dough to be cut. 20 minutes total time gave us delicious, surprisingly flaky biscuits for dinner.

  • Foolproof double-crust pie dough

    • BethNH on September 29, 2017

      My pie crust making abilities are temperamental at best. I was happy with one recipe I was using but the last two times it's been more like cardboard. This recipe is super easy. The addition of vodka for part of the moisture prevents gluten from forming. The dough is weird - like play dough - and very sticky. For best results, roll out between two sheets of well floured waxed paper. This is the tenderest, flakiest crust I've ever made and it will be my go to recipe from now on.

    • damazinah on December 24, 2015

      This really is the tenderest, flakiest pie crust I've ever tasted. However, as noted in the recipe, the dough is quite wet, and I found it to be somewhat temperamental to work with. I will definitely use this recipe again, but wouldn't recommend it to someone who's not experienced in handling pie dough.

  • Spice cake with cream cheese frosting

    • BethNH on September 29, 2017

      I've only ever had spice cake from a box so I found this recipe tempting when I found it. This is a simple cake baked in a 9x13 pan. The spices for the cake were bloomed in browned butter before being added to the batter. In addition to the dried spices, there was a tablespoon of fresh ginger and some molasses added. The top of the cake browned more than I thought was good and I was a bit worried. I needn't have worried a bit as the cake was quite moist with a very nice crumb. The spices were quite noticeable but not overwhelming. The cake was frosted with a cream cheese frosting. Some of the spice mixture was supposed to be added to the frosting and I'm quite sure it would have been delicious but I forgot to add it. Overall, a very good cake that was quite easy to make.

  • Easy chocolate cake

    • BethNH on September 29, 2017

      While she was pregnant with me, my mother lived on chocolate mayonnaise cake that my grandmother baked. It was the only thing that settled her stomach. This is not my grandmother's recipe as is evidenced by the addition of bittersweet chocolate that is melted by hot coffee before being added to the batter. Nonetheless, this is a simple cake that comes together with basic ingredients and just two bowls. It uses mayonnaise in place of oil or butter but still uses one egg. The cake was chocolatey and moist and was just the right thing after graduation.

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      I am not a big mayonnaise fan, so I see chocolate mayonnaise cakes as a relatively painless way to make extra mayonnaise disappear! This is a fine chocolate cake though not my preferred style. Chocolate flavor is moderate. Texture is quite soft and on the crumbly side - I'll try taking it from the oven sooner than specified in the recipe next time. Given its soft texture, it does best with a frosting that stays soft vs. one that sets up firm. [Cross-post for Annual Edition /Magazine /Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Modern mincemeat pie

    • milgwimper on July 02, 2014

      This was fabulous as written. Further deviation in later constructions : I added a little more booze and added a little bit of lard as I did not have suet. I added more spices, and doubled the recipe.

  • Simple cream scones

    • drlake66 on April 22, 2013

      This recipe was simple and quick. It also produced some of the moistest, most tender scones I've ever tasted.

  • Blueberry scones

    • jodies on September 23, 2015

      Best blueberry scones EVER (and I have tried many). They're also fun to make and they freeze well.

    • Lepa on November 10, 2019

      These were completely full of berries and delicious!! The method was a bit different than other scones I have made and resulted in dough that was easy to work with, tender and not too crumbly. I will certainly make these again.

  • Grilled rack of lamb

    • TrishaCP on June 04, 2017

      Nothing too special about this, but it's a nice solid recipe as to be expected from CI.

  • Quicker turkey burgers

    • TrishaCP on May 30, 2015

      The flavor of these burgers was good and the ricotta did keep them moist. However, the texture was very weirdly soft and we had to finish them in a skillet because they were really close to falling apart on the grill. I think you are better off taking the time to grind your own turkey per the regular CI recipe than using this cheat.

  • Grilled London broil

    • TrishaCP on September 07, 2014

      I needed to use up a London Broil cut from my meat CSA, and this recipe made the most sense for the summer months. The technique led to a well-cooked piece of meat, if you like this type of cut, but it definitely needs a sauce.

  • Sweet and smoky grilled tomato salsa

    • TrishaCP on September 07, 2014

      This was convenient and easy to make since we were already using the grill. It tasted fine but nothing special.

  • Blueberry pie

    • TrishaCP on July 05, 2012

      This is my favorite blueberry pie recipe to make, because the filling (which uses ground instant tapioca and grated apples for the pectin) is really the perfect consistency- not too gloopy and not too runny. Maybe if I was better at rolling out pie dough, I would try cutting the holes out of the top crust prior to putting it on the pie, per Cook's instructions, but my dough rolling skills are atrocious. Instead, I make my own vents once the pie has been topped, and that works out ok for me.

  • Creamy Parmesan polenta

    • TrishaCP on October 28, 2015

      This is a great basic recipe for creamy polenta. We did a riff on the cherry tomato topping accompaniment minus the mozzarella and it really went well with the polenta.

  • Crunchy baked pork chops

    • TrishaCP on April 20, 2014

      As advertised, this method of cooking pork chops resulted in a delightfully crunchy crust. I varied from the recipe in a few areas- I omitted shallots since I didn't have them on hand, used my own pre-made bread crumbs, and used my own brine started the previous night. However, I followed exactly the breading technique and cooking method and it was wonderful. One small issue I had is that the fresh garlic used cooked a bit too much in some of the most-browned sections of the chops. My guess would be it would be better to omit it if you are going to use bigger chops with longer cooking time than what the recipe requires.

  • French-style pot roast

    • jhappel on October 27, 2014

      This is a lovely pot roast. I didn't have gelatin, so skipped that part. I had to leave the house, so cooked it longer than the recipe recommended and the sauce was beautifully reduced. It was so thick, I don't think I could have used the gelatin. My husband said it is much better than the plain pot roasts he grew up with.

  • Creamy leek-potato soup

    • jhappel on October 15, 2014

      The word "creamy" is appropriate. This soup is creamy, but has no cream. It is deliciously light, with little potato, but just enough for body. It is mostly leeks and onion and is very soft and flavorful.

  • Broccoli-cheese soup

    • jhappel on October 15, 2014

      This is a light and flavorful broccoli cheese soup. I was looking for something healthy and refreshing and found it. If you want a thick cheesy soup, this one is not for you. The mustard and cayenne really punch up the flavor. The bit of spinach adds not only a bright green color, but more body and nutrition.

    • aeader on October 20, 2014

      This was my first time making or eating broccoli cheese soup. I had a lot of broccoli to use up from the CSA. I normally would not have tried it since the ones I see in restaurants always looked unappetizing to me. I was pleasantly surprised that the flavor of the broccoli was not overpowering or sulfurous, and that the cheese didn't make the texture too gloppy. The cheese flavor came through nicely and the mustard and cayenne really complemented the flavors. I made the mistake of seasoning the soup with salt/pepper before adding all the cheese, and it ended up a bit too salty for my taste (although others didn't think so). Next time I would wait until it's completely finished before adding salt/pepper.

    • Yildiz100 on January 17, 2016

      Made exactly as written. Next time I'll cut the recipe in half because we are bound to get sick of this before we finish it. (Well, I'LL get sick of it because I'm the only one likely to eat a lot of it.) The spoon-fulls with more texture were best so next time I'll be careful not to over blend. I love this lighter, side-dish version of broccoli soup. I served with bruschetta topped with tomato-arugula salad. It was a great light supper!

    • infotrop on February 19, 2018

      This soup tasted flavorful and bright, even though it didn't taste particularly cheese-y. But I prefer its consistency to very thick and rich broccoli cheddar soups. This froze well too.

    • Rutabaga on March 09, 2015

      Anticipating the broccoli that was to arrive in my CSA box, I planned to make this soup. Unfortunately, I realized when I started to make the recipe that I only had half the required amount of broccoli. Rather than halving the recipe, I added more spinach (about half a pound total) and decreased the water by about a cup. It still came out a little thin and not as flavorful as a would have liked, probably due to the missing broccoli. While I used fresh ground yellow mustard seeds, which also added a bit of a bite to the final dish, and I added a little extra cheddar.

  • Eggplant Parmesan

    • mfto on August 15, 2016

      I just made 1 1/2 recipe for a family gathering. I must have been out of my mind but it was delicious. I, too, used my favorite tomato sauce recipe, Lidia Bastianich's Twenty-minute marinara sauce but the one with this recipe sounds OK. Like mrsmadam says the eggplant recipe is time consuming (as in lots of work). I made the tomato sauce, fresh bread crumbs and grated parmesan a day ahead. The next day my husband cut the farmers' market eggplant in the required 1/4" slices and I followed the salting and breading instructions. Since I was making a large recipe, I used foil in my baking pans and then brushed with olive oil. I recommend dipping the breaded eggplant slice in the oiled pan and then flipping it so both sides are lightly oiled. Also take the advice of a more recent Cook's Illustrated recipe and use pre-shredded mozzarella. You have their permission.

    • mrsmadam on August 24, 2015

      I’m amazed that there are no notes for this recipe. I used a favorite sauce recipe so I can’t comment on this one, but the eggplant itself was amazing. I followed the instructions to the letter and while time consuming it was totally worth the effort. I’m sure subsequent attempts will cut down on the time spent. And there will be more!

  • Pan-seared sesame-crusted tuna steaks

    • abrownb1 on December 16, 2019

      Nice simple preparation. I rubbed a little yuzu kosho over the tuna with the oil for an extra kick - highly recommend (wasabi would be good too). Lovely sliced over mixed greens with avocado, cukes, scallion, rice wine vinegar, and spicy mayo drizzle. Spicy tuna roll in salad form!

  • Classic Caesar salad

    • HazukaPie on May 13, 2016

      This recipe includes a method for making pan fried garlic croutons which we love.

  • Hungarian beef stew

    • kath on September 21, 2013

      I followed the recipe exactly. I'm wondering if it's really necessary to stir every 30 minutes. But the results were delicious!

  • Blondies

    • kath on June 09, 2019

      I made these for a friend who loves blondies. His response? "These are the best blondies I have EVER had!" They are really good. They're easy to remove from the pan with the foil slings that are recommended. I used a pizza cutter to neatly cut them into bars.

  • Modern corn chowder

    • lisachile on September 15, 2014

      This soup was delicious. It has less dairy than most recipes and really allows the corn to shine.

  • Grilled chicken fajitas

    • florador on December 11, 2011

      11-11-11: used the marinade recipe (plus 1 t crushed cumin) on 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts. Grilled the chicken whole. But sauteed the red onions and green pepper strips, the added reserved marinade. After chicken was grilled cut it into strips and added to onion-pepper mix. Heated all through and served w/ avocado slices and flour tortillas -- Yum!

    • sturlington on March 26, 2013

      This is a nice recipe. An easy marinade with lots of lime makes for tasty fajitas. I would recommend lots of accompaniments, though: salsa, guacamole, sour cream. Otherwise, it's a little plain.

    • yassoma on August 18, 2016

      I really liked the marinade but next time I'll up the spices, as I do with most CI's recipes.

  • Crabmeat quiche

    • jenmacgregor18 on April 06, 2015

      I just used 4 eggs, instead of 2 eggs and 2 yolks. Definitely combine the chives with the crabmeat. If the chives stick to the crab--they won't end up all on top of the quiche. I would put the crabmeat in the pie crust 1st and then add the custard, for even distribution. Nice smooth, soft custard. This being said, we weren't crazy about the texture & flavor combination. I'm not sure what it was exactly. We like seafood and we like quiche. I guess seafood custard isn't for us.

  • Creamy vanilla frosting

    • jenmacgregor18 on October 31, 2019

      Made this for an apple cake. Not difficult. I’m not the biggest fan of vanilla - but this is really very good. Not too sweet. Creamy, not at all greasy. Will absolutely make again

  • Old-fashioned beef stew

    • jenmacgregor18 on April 03, 2015

      I added a tsp or so of: Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce & vinegar, 2 TBL of tomato paste and also 1/2 oz dry porcini, rehydrated. I pureed porcini before adding to beef. all 3 of the family said it's a keeper.

    • Rachaelsb on November 17, 2018

      I thought this was delicious. True to its name it is a very traditional comfy beef stew. Made with a side of biscuits. Perfect combination for a late fall night.

  • One-minute salsa

    • jenmacgregor18 on October 22, 2019

      This does work well. I agree with sturlington about leaving a bit chunkier next time; but otherwise this is a good fresh salsa.

    • sturlington on February 02, 2015

      This is a good alternative recipe for a winter salsa. I wasn't crazy about the pureed texture and would leave it chunkier next time.

  • Classic stuffed bell peppers

    • jenmacgregor18 on October 22, 2019

      I add a mild harissa and Penzey's Turkish seasoning to taste. excellent. I usually freeze at least 1/2 the batch.

  • Nut-crusted chicken breasts with orange and oregano

    • jenmacgregor18 on June 22, 2016

      We really enjoyed this. I made it with pecans, green onions instead of shallots, parsley & lemon zest, since I didn't have oranges on hand. It turned out with a crunchy, full-coverage coating and moist chicken. I reheat leftovers in toaster oven, so it's still crunchy. I'm thinking of using leftovers in a romaine salad w/ orange vinaigrette.

  • Baked manicotti with spinach

    • jenmacgregor18 on April 03, 2015

      A bit of a project; but worthwhile. If I'm taking the time, I usually make a double or triple batch. one for now, one to freeze & one to give away. kids love them. great fresh tasting tomato sauce and deliciously cheesy.

  • Roasted cauliflower

    • jenmacgregor18 on April 07, 2015

      simple and lovely flavor. might use za'atar next time.

  • Grilled tuna steaks with soy-ginger vinaigrette

    • aeader on October 20, 2014

      The marinade is delicious, and really permeated the steaks even though they didn't marinate for very long. I let them sit just a few minutes before we put them on the grill. This is my go-to recipe for tuna steaks.

  • Mediterranean chopped salad

    • Ivy on December 18, 2012

      page 39, serves 4

  • Herbed roast turkey

    • Ivy on November 16, 2016

      page 358 in cookbook. This is also listed as a Cooks Country recipe.

  • French baguette

  • Dinner baguettes

  • Applesauce snack cake

    • Analyze on March 12, 2019

      This is SO good! The base cake has a wonderful apple flavor and a great texture. I tried both this recipe, and the Oat-Nut Streusel variation. My husband, who doesn't normally like oat streusel or sweet quick breads, loved the streusel variation. I actually preferred this original version with the cinnamon-sugar topping, as in my opinion it complements the apple flavor in the cake better, and actually makes the cake taste more apple-y. You can't go wrong with either version, or try half and half like I did :) I already have several apple cake recipes that I love, and didn't think I needed another, but I did! I'm excited to try the ginger-cardamom version next. Personally, we had it for breakfast, but this would be great with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream too.

  • Applesauce snack cake with oat-nut streusel

    • Analyze on March 12, 2019

      This is SO good! The base cake has a wonderful apple flavor and a great texture. I tried both this recipe, and the original (no streusel). My husband, who doesn't normally like oat streusel or sweet quick breads, loved the streusel variation. I actually preferred this original version with the cinnamon-sugar topping, as in my opinion it complements the apple flavor in the cake better, and actually makes the cake taste more apple-y. You can't go wrong with either version, or try half and half like I did :) I already have several apple cake recipes that I love, and didn't think I needed another, but I did! I'm excited to try the ginger-cardamom version next. Personally, we had it for breakfast, but this would be great with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream too. P.S. A tip I read online and am eager to try next time: Leave the applesauce in the fridge. Instead of waiting for the dried apple & cider mixture to cool, blend them at once, to bring both to room temperature sooner.

  • Grilled stuffed flank steak

    • Analyze on March 31, 2017

      This is SO good! I LOVE the spinach and pine nuts variation (using Asiago cheese, which Kenji mentioned in the recipe's article but didn't reflect in the recipe), and my husband loves the original version with Provolone and Prosciutto. It's really easy to make both versions on the same roll of steak, since the herb rub is identical. It is so delicious with the cheese. These also re-heat well and don't get dry!

  • Summer vegetable gratin with roasted peppers and smoked mozzarella

    • Analyze on June 16, 2017

      We loved this one. It's got a great depth of flavors including from the smoked mozzarella. It is a lot of work.

    • Yildiz100 on July 20, 2015

      Despite loving every ingredient in this dish, this wasn't a favorite. It was a lot of work and yet not as good as the ingredients are standing alone The roasted red peppers kind of disappeared into the dish and I forgot they were there. The smoked mozzarella would have tasted better on some bread with a bit of salt. The zucchini tasted a bit too steamed.

  • Soy-ginger sauce with scallion

    • Analyze on February 13, 2019

      This recipe is delicious! The sauce is great, as is the cauliflower cooking method. Have made it 2x now and it was a hit both times.

  • Pan-roasted asparagus with toasted garlic and Parmesan

    • Analyze on March 12, 2019

      This is a delicious recipe! I've made it four times and we've loved it every time. My husband doesn't care for the garlic, so I get it all :)

  • Asparagus, red pepper, spinach salad with sherry vinegar and goat cheese

    • Analyze on March 09, 2019

      We really like this recipe! I've made it twice now. You make a vinaigrette that's tossed with spinach for the bottom layer of the salad. Atop that is a layer of sauteed bell pepper, asparagus, and shallot that's tossed with the rest of the vinaigrette. Then you sprinkle that with goat cheese. So the presentation is nice, and the flavors are yummy.

  • Stir-fried portobellos with soy-maple sauce

    • Analyze on February 15, 2019

      These are great vegetables; my husband and I both really liked this recipe, and the sauce has a great maple flavor. I've made it with broccoli, red bell pepper and bok choy, and also with green beans, zucchini, and napa cabbage; both were great. Definitely serve it over rice so that the sauce won't take over your entire plate :) The optional cashews seemed out of place to both of us; I won't be using them next time.

  • Fried rice with peas and bean sprouts

    • mrsmadam on May 16, 2018

      This was very good. I made a half recipe and lightly sautéed a half pound of shrimp (cut in bite size pieces) after cooking the egg. I then proceeded as directed, adding the shrimp with the final ingredients to finish cooking. I knew this would be better than any flavoring packet I could buy but was quite pleased with just how much better it was.

  • Pasta alla Norma

    • mrsmadam on November 23, 2018

      This was excellent. I peeled the eggplants (2 small). The end result was a luscious and silky pasta.

  • Lighter chicken and dumplings

    • mrsmadam on October 25, 2017

      I made this for a friend who is recovering from an extended illness and she raved about it. For the first time in a very long time she had two (albeit small) servings of something. Since this makes such a large amount there was some left for our concierge (a self proclaimed expert) who also approved. And the avowed chicken hater husband declared it good enough to make a repeat appearance - soon, please.

  • Hearty chicken noodle soup

    • mrsmadam on October 15, 2017

      As is my norm for the first time with a recipe I made this per instructions and it is superb. I have never before had more flavorful and tender poached chicken breasts. The only thing I will do differently next time is to probably add some more bones/chicken pieces and another two cups of water to yield more broth.

    • sturlington on May 17, 2013

      P70. Stock takes 1 hour, soup is another 20 minutes. I didn't go all out on this recipe and it was still hearty and delicious. I need to try the full version sometime.

  • Best French onion soup

    • mrsmadam on June 20, 2016

      This was really good. Granted time consuming but much of it is hands off. Be sure to heed the warning about using the sweeter onions - I was just short and threw in a smallish 10-15 and could even taste that. Toasting the croutons before putting them in the bowl with the cheese is a brilliant move. Since there are only two of us I have some for the freezer too.

  • Brussels sprouts braised in cream

    • mrsmadam on July 12, 2015

      These are an easy side that will win over sprouts doubters.

  • Broiled salmon with chutney and crisp spiced crust

    • mrsmadam on January 12, 2014

      Very good

  • Simple carrot cake with cream cheese frosting

    • mrsmadam on April 25, 2016

      Being a big fan of spice cakes I thought this recipe used a very light hand in that department but being a "follow the recipe the first time" kind of baker I made it as directed and it was wonderful. As I was transporting this to the office I left it in the pan to frost. My frosting was on the thin side and I would have worried about it running on the sides some. I'm anxious to try the Chai variation.

  • Grilled lemon-parsley chicken breasts

    • sturlington on March 26, 2013

      A useful recipe, and very tasty. The marinade is quick to make, and the chicken only has to marinade 30 minutes, so this dish can be put together on a weeknight. The resulting chicken was juicy and flavorful. Also a good recipe for cooking chicken ahead for other uses, like salads and sandwiches.

  • Spice-rubbed grilled bone-in chicken breasts

    • sturlington on March 26, 2013

      A very simple recipe, produces good results.

  • Hearty frittata with leek, prosciutto, and goat cheese

    • sturlington on April 22, 2014

      Watch the salt on this recipe, as the prosciutto and goat cheese also add saltiness.

    • infotrop on February 19, 2018

      More or less halved this recipe, using just four eggs to serve two. But ok, *all* the goat cheese. Delicious.

  • Breakfast strata with sausage, mushrooms, and Monterey Jack

    • sturlington on January 01, 2016

      Made a simpler version for New Year's Day breakfast.

  • Scrambled eggs with sausage, sweet peppers, and cheddar

    • sturlington on July 31, 2014

      This is a nice formula for a hearty diner-style scramble. Can vary the type of sausage and peppers (I used banana peppers and breakfast turkey sausage). I do add the filling ingredients before the eggs are fully cooked so as to better incorporate them. I find that if I wait too long, the dish is more like scrambled eggs with stuff on top.

  • Classic frittata with leek and potatoes

    • sturlington on October 21, 2013

      This makes a hearty, delicious frittata and is really a foolproof recipe. Leftovers make a great next day breakfast.

  • Hearty frittata with bacon, potato, and cheddar

    • sturlington on March 26, 2013

      The original recipe makes a giant frittata that requires a dozen eggs. I cut it in half since my family doesn't need that much. Half the recipe makes 4 main-course portions, so the full recipe could easily feed 8 or even more as part of a larger menu. This is a good technique and a great combination of flavors. It reminded me of "country scramble" that you get in diners sometimes.

  • New York-style thin-crust pizza

    • sturlington on January 23, 2015

      Easy pizza dough. Had a hard time stretching the dough without tearing -- - perhaps it needs more kneading time. This dough can also be used to make knots and bread sticks.

    • ashallen on January 19, 2020

      Excellent recipe for homemade pizza! I grew up on New Haven pizza and can be pretty picky. This recipe surprised me - I wasn't expecting to make this good a pizza with a regular oven + baking stone. Crust was nicely chewy with a moist interior, crisp exterior, and great dough bubbles on the rim. I only did a 1-day cold-ferment with the dough this time and will try the 3-day next time. Used King Arthur's organic bread flour which we've also enjoyed in other breads. Good quantity of sauce and cheese relative to crust, though my husband preferred a bit more sauce (+ a whole tin of anchovies!) on his pie. Using semolina flour to dust the peel really eases transfer of the pizza from peel to oven. [Cross-post for 2011 & 2013 Annual Edition/2011 & 2013 Magazine/Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Simple bakery-style muffins

    • sturlington on March 04, 2015

      Note: requires a stand mixer.

  • Ultimate banana bread

    • sturlington on November 08, 2015

      Requires a microwave.

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Great banana bread recipe!! Strong banana flavor and a firm but tender texture. With some recipes, the slices are so tender/fragile that they start to fall apart as you cut or butter them - this bread slices just fine. It also uses a lot of bananas - 5-6! I use 20 oz peeled. Starting with frozen bananas (which I often do) is actually a benefit - recipe calls for draining the juice from the thawed bananas and cooking it down to a syrup. Recipe also calls for layering banana slices on top of the bread, but, I don't like their texture and replace them with a thick sprinkling of turbinado sugar which bakes into a crunchy crust. I've also found that although loaves baked in the 8.5x4.5-inch loaf pan specified in the recipe are very pretty (nice high center ridge), loaves made in a 9x5-inch loaf pan bake through more evenly - I prefer the latter. Taking them from the oven once the center hits 195F works well. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Fluffy buttermilk drop biscuits

    • sturlington on March 26, 2013

      A quicker biscuit, easy to make.

  • French toast

  • Blueberry pancakes

    • sturlington on July 13, 2014

      These make a great pancake, no special ingredients required other than blueberries. Even they can be omitted during cooking. Uses fresh or frozen berries. p551

  • Classic granola

    • sturlington on March 26, 2013

      Of all the granola recipes I have tried, this has been my favorite. The granola was golden brown, crunchy and slightly sweet, not at all charred or bitter, and easy to adapt. This could be my weekly recipe for granola.

    • macfadden on September 25, 2016

      Unlike the other reviewer, I did not like this recipe at all. I followed it exactly and found it bland, boring, and under-sweetened. It doesn't call for any spices or salt, and it could really use some. It was also unnecessarily complex. Other recipes that don't call for stirring the granola every five minutes in the oven turn out fine, as do ones that let it cook and cool on the same baking sheet rather than dirtying two. Also, I found the baking time to be way off. Mine needed an extra 10 minutes (75% more time than called for) to be done, and my oven usually runs hot.

  • Sweet and tangy tartar sauce

    • sturlington on September 12, 2014

      An easy tartar sauce to make from pantry ingredients.

  • Spicy cucumber relish

    • sturlington on July 14, 2013

      Good on crab cakes. Could have been spicier.

  • Broiled salmon with mustard and crisp dilled crust

    • sturlington on March 17, 2015

      The concept is good but I didn't feel like this recipe cohered very well.

  • Updated chicken Parmesan

    • sturlington on January 28, 2013

      Tasty, but still a lot of steps for a streamlined version. Made 1/2013

  • Chicken piccata

    • sturlington on March 26, 2013

      I really went off-recipe with this dish, when I discovered at the last minute that I didn't have any capers. I added some mushrooms and a little white wine plus water in place of stock. It was delicious, as well as quick and easy to make. This lemon chicken will probably become a standard in my house.

    • Rutabaga on April 07, 2014

      My husband loves this dish; it is one of his all time favorites, probably because he loves capers in just about everything. I especially like the velvety, lemony sauce, and we both enjoy the lemon slices that soften and sweeten as they cook in it.

    • mamacrumbcake on November 14, 2019

      We did not love this. The flavor was unbalanced—too much acid (lemon).

  • Roasted chicken breasts

    • sturlington on December 09, 2012

      P331. Time to make: 35-40 minutes. This is an easy recipe with several simple variations. I tried the garlic and lemon variation this time and it was delicious. It's a good recipe for my family, since we prefer white meat and often can't eat a whole chicken, anyway. Leftovers keep very well and are good for sandwiches, salads, etc.

  • Chicken and rice with tomatoes, white wine, and parsley

    • sturlington on January 29, 2015

      Fast and easy with bone-in chicken breasts. I like the variation with peas and paprika, although I did cut down on the amount of paprika used and I omitted the wine.

    • ashallen on December 31, 2019

      Good recipe - both rice and chicken are moist and have very good flavor. Recipe specifies 3-4 pounds of chicken - I used 3 pounds and found the rice to be very moist and rich from the chicken juices - 4 pounds would be over the top for me! I substituted red bell pepper for green since we're not fond of the latter in a dish like this - worked well. Substituting slivered carrots for bell pepper also works well, as does adding some additional yellow onion. I've fiddled with the original cooking technique in this recipe to get the rice/chicken textures I prefer. I now cook the dish in a covered 8-quart Le Creuset dutch oven in the oven vs. simmering on the stovetop - I find that the rice and chicken cook more evenly that way. The Le Creuset pot has not needed any additional sealing (e.g., with foil) - in fact, I've cut back a bit on the amount of liquid added because the rice was coming out a bit too moist for my taste. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Pan-seared chicken breasts with lemon and chive pan sauce

    • sturlington on May 05, 2013

      P317

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Excellent recipe - these are the best pan-cooked boneless chicken breasts I've ever made. I made only the chicken - not the pan sauce. The flavor reminded me a bit of the excellent bone-in sautéed chicken pieces recipe from Julia Child's The Way to Cook and the meat stayed moist(!). It was good to have the digital thermometer handy to be able to follow the cooking temperature guidance in the recipe - my cooking times at each step ended up being longer than those noted in the recipe. Also, like a lot of recipes for pan-seared meat, there was spatter - I cooked it outside on the grill side burner to take care of that. Leftovers kept well. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Sweet and tangy oven-barbecued chicken

    • sturlington on April 22, 2015

      This recipe requires boneless chicken breasts.

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      This came out really well and was easy to make. The barbecue sauce tasted a little sweet on its own, but it balanced out when it was eaten with the chicken. Recipe makes plenty of sauce for the chicken plus quite a bit extra. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Mashed sweet potatoes

    • sturlington on December 01, 2014

      An easy recipe and a little more healthy than sweet potato casserole for the Thanksgiving spread.

  • Potato roesti

    • sturlington on May 07, 2013

      The first time I made this, it turned out well. The second time, it burned and had to be thrown away. I couldn't figure out what I did differently, which makes this an unreproducible recipe.

  • Potato roesti with fried eggs and Parmesan

    • sturlington on January 21, 2013

      An easy recipe, and well received. I omitted the cornstarch with no noticeable ill effects. This is a variation of the potato roesti recipe.

  • Stuffed baked potatoes with bacon, cabbage, and cheddar

    • sturlington on March 24, 2013

      Made for St. Patrick's Day. Very tasty and filling as an entree with a light salad. I omitted the sour cream with no noticeable detriment to the recipe.

  • Classic mashed potatoes

    • sturlington on November 26, 2012

      These call for russet potatoes. I think Yukon Golds make a better mashed potato with fewer lumps.

    • Rutabaga on November 26, 2014

      We made a quadruple batch with 8 pounds of Yukon gold potatoes, but peeled them prior to cooking. As a result, the potatoes probably soaked up more water when cooking than ideal. When I added the half and half - a whole quart - I was momentarily afraid the dish had been ruined, the consistency was so soupy. Next time, I would add less half and half to start. Fortunately, the potatoes thickened, although they were still very soft. We added four heads of roasted garlic, smashing about 1/3 of the cloves in the garlic basting butter first and adding the rest whole. The result was a deep yet mellow garlic flavor that permeated the whole dish. I used the medium holes on the ricer to press the potatoes, but next time will try the fine press. While there are no hard pieces, the texture is not completely smooth, but full of soft, small lumps. But the flavor is still excellent so if flavor comes first for you, you probably wouldn't find the lumps off-putting.

  • Stuffed baked potatoes with broccoli, cheddar, and scallions

    • sturlington on April 22, 2014

      I bake my potatoes at a higher temperature so they don't take as long. This is an endlessly useful recipe that can be varied many ways. Variations that follow include potatoes stuffed with bacon, cabbage and cheddar, and stuffed with ham, peas and gruyere. I have also added spinach and mushrooms. Can substitute plain yogurt for sour cream. P286

    • Lesliehauser on March 30, 2020

      Ridiculously good. Added bacon. Cooked broccoli in 1tsp bacon fat. Only used 3 tbsp sour cream and 1/2 c cheddar, and no half and half or butter in the mashed potatoes and they were amazing and to die for. Entire family wants this for dinner again next week. I will always make mashed potatoes from roasted potatoes from here on out, they were light and fluffy, and I don’t usually like mashed or baked potatoes.

  • Skillet-roasted potatoes

    • sturlington on October 15, 2012

      A little bland. Try adding salt and pepper before the final stirring process.

  • Smashed potatoes

  • Farro risotto

    • sturlington on September 12, 2014

      Very easy, quick, and tasty. Got good ratings from everyone, even the picky eater who does not like grains. A good option for a weeknight side dish and a tasty alternative to rice. p231

  • Toasted orzo with peas and Parmesan

    • sturlington on January 28, 2013

      I don't think this recipe was entirely successful. The orzo was a bit gummy. Made 1/2013

  • Pan-roasted broccoli

    • sturlington on January 11, 2013

      Not to my taste. I prefer steaming.

  • Sautéed green beans with garlic and herbs

    • sturlington on March 26, 2013

      This is a good method for cooking green beans. It both steams and browns the green beans in only one pan, and it has a nice garlic and lemon flavor. A good weeknight side.

  • Garlic-lemon green beans with toasted bread crumbs

    • sturlington on May 05, 2013

      This was a great hit for Thanksgiving, fresh and flavorful, plus healthier than the traditional green bean casserole. P248

  • Penne with cherry tomatoes, garlic, and basil

    • sturlington on September 19, 2014

      The cherry tomatoes can be roasted for only 30 minutes, perhaps less, to make this a quicker weeknight recipe.

  • Classic macaroni and cheese

    • sturlington on January 27, 2015

      A reliable mac and cheese recipe, quick and easy enough for a weeknight, adaptable enough to add veggies and/or meat to make a full meal. Note: my 6-year-old doesn't like the crunchy crust, which is the best part, so what is wrong with him?

    • canadianrose on February 16, 2017

      This is a very good recipe and is my son's very favorite.

  • Pasta with chicken, broccoli, and sun-dried tomatoes

    • sturlington on April 18, 2013

      Quick and easy. I usually have the ingredients on hand. Full meal in one pot. I substituted cherry tomatoes for sun-dried and it was fine.

    • vhague on April 29, 2014

      This was delicious and very simple to make, but I would likely cut down the ratio of pasta to chicken in the future.

    • kkillebrew on April 06, 2019

      Delicious and easy with garden broccoli, home-dried smoked tomatoes and cooked chicken from the freezer.

  • Creamy avocado ranch dressing

    • sturlington on March 26, 2013

      Normally, I don't care for ranch dressing, but I had a small amount of buttermilk left and I do like avocado, so I thought I'd try this. It tasted like no other ranch dressing I have had. It's a lovely pale green color, smooth and creamy with a hint of spice. Delicious.

  • Rich and creamy blue cheese dressing

    • sturlington on March 26, 2013

      I love blue cheese dressing, so I love this. It is just what a blue cheese dressing should be. I just ignore the fact that it contains buttermilk, sour cream AND mayo, and only make it for special occasions. It actually works better as a dip, since it's so rich that a little goes a long way.

    • Rutabaga on December 05, 2016

      The other notes pretty much say it all. This is pretty much exactly what you want in a blue cheese dressing, and it does work well as a dip (my five-year-old thinks it's ranch and loves it).

    • damazinah on June 19, 2016

      This is exactly how blue cheese dressing should be - chunky, thick, and creamy, with lots of blue cheese flavor at forefront.

  • Classic Cobb salad

    • sturlington on May 07, 2014

      Cobb salad is my go-to salad as a meal dish, lunch or dinner. I rarely have all the proteins on hand, but the salad is forgiving and adaptable. Bacon seems to be a necessity, though.

  • Sesame lemon cucumber salad

    • sturlington on March 26, 2013

      Really good. This is a light, flavorful salad that goes well with many things, but I have to remember to salt the cucumbers an hour or more ahead of time.

    • Yildiz100 on January 10, 2017

      I thought this was fine but a bit boring.I wanted to try an alternative to Ottolenghi's cucumber salad, but I really missed the spark added by the ginger and garlic.

  • Chunky guacamole

    • sturlington on February 02, 2015

      A simple and tasty guacamole.

  • Cheesy nachos with refried beans

    • sturlington on February 02, 2015

      This recipe makes very simple and tasty nachos. The chips stay crisp and there is plenty of cheese and jalapeno scattered throughout. I made a nachos "bar" for serving up the various non-heated toppings, and included steak and chicken as well as salsa, guac, sour cream and scallions, for "fajitas nachos". Better than restaurant-style nachos, which are too overloaded, in my opinion.

  • Quesadillas with queso fresco and roasted peppers

    • sturlington on April 22, 2013

      Quesadillas are so simple, it can seem like a recipe is not needed, but this one has a lot of nice touches, such as brushing oil on the tortillas and sprinkling them with salt. Fillings are very substitute-friendly.

  • Classic creamy chicken salad

    • sturlington on October 16, 2013

      I lighten this up a bit by subbing sour cream for some of the mayo. Always reliable recipe.

  • Classic tuna salad

    • sturlington on August 26, 2014

      Reliable recipe for this lunchtime staple, with plenty of suggested variations to keep it interesting.

  • Cherry tomato salad with tarragon and blue cheese

    • sturlington on June 26, 2015

      I had trouble getting the requisite amount of juice following the salad spinner instructions. I ended up just dressing the salad with oil and vinegar.

  • Creamy buttermilk coleslaw

    • sturlington on March 26, 2013

      This is a restaurant-style coleslaw that goes well with burgers. I like the technique of wilting the cabbage first by salting it. Lighter than it seems and very yummy. I substituted plain yogurt for the sour cream.

    • Rinshin on February 18, 2015

      I also liked the idea of salting and wilting the cabbage for making coleslaw. This prevents over soggy coleslaw. Excellent taste and easy to make.

    • macfadden on September 23, 2016

      Very nice. I found it tangier and tastier on the second day.

    • pandasaurusrex on February 09, 2019

      This was delicious, light and refreshing. A go-to recipe. Made it to go on top of pulled pork sandwiches for Super Bowl and everyone especially raved about this coleslaw.

  • Deli-style coleslaw

    • sturlington on September 22, 2015

      Salt cabbage for 1-4 hours ahead of time.

  • Sweet and tangy coleslaw

    • sturlington on July 27, 2015

      This recipe requires a microwave.

    • Rinshin on January 26, 2016

      Looking for a lighter non-mayo or creamy coleslaw I came across this one to serve with indoor bbq chicken and cowboy beans. The direction calls for shredded cabbage with sugar and salt microwaved for a min and repeated for 30 seconds. The first 1 min was plenty enough for cabbage I used. The taste was reminiscent of some sauerkraut salads without all the sour. Very light and simple coleslaw recipe I will be repeating again

  • Pasta salad with pesto

    • sturlington on October 16, 2013

      Heartier with tortellini.

  • All-American potato salad

    • sturlington on March 26, 2013

      I have made this recipe many times, and it is always excellent. This is my go-to recipe when I want a traditional, Southern-style potato salad for picnics and barbecues.

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      This is a great, classic version of mayonnaise-dressed potato salad. Coming from me, that's a significant statement since I'm generally not a fan of mayonnaise or hard-boiled eggs! This salad has tender potatoes, enough dressing to tie everything together without being overwhelming, and a classic flavor that can serve as a base for variation. I usually use chopped-up sweet bread and butter pickles instead of sweet pickle relish (gives me an excuse to buy a big jar of delicious pickles). I think the recipe's technique of tossing the potatoes with white vinegar helps the potato exteriors disintegrate a bit so they stick nicely to each other - I skipped the vinegar toss once and the potatoes didn't cohere as well. Avoid cutting the potatoes too small, overcooking them, or over-stirring them, however, or you will end up with potato salad-flavored mashed potatoes. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • White chicken chili

    • sturlington on March 26, 2013

      This chili was not at all hard to make, and it was delicious and satisfying. I used my homemade chile paste in place of the chile mixture. A little cheddar or a dollop of sour cream on top goes well. I like the method of pureeing some of the beans and veggies to give the chili a thicker base. This one is a keeper.

  • Pasta and chunky tomato sauce

    • sturlington on February 13, 2015

      Very easy and quick. Lacking fresh basil, I subbed a spoonful of pesto.

  • Thai pork lettuce wraps

    • SACarlson on June 15, 2019

      I put pork shoulder through my meat grinder. I love this recipe--so easy and so delicious!

  • Grilled Thai beef salad

    • SACarlson on June 28, 2019

      The ingredient proportions in the dressing recipe are all off. There are better recipes for Thai beef salad out there, so I would skip this one.

  • Greek salad

    • Yildiz100 on February 04, 2015

      I really enjoyed this version of Greek salad. The vinaigrette was very good, and the roasted red peppers were a perfect addition. However, next time I will omit the mint. I thought it actually took away from the flavor a little.

  • Bruschetta with arugula, red onions, and rosemary-white bean spread

    • Yildiz100 on August 10, 2018

      This is fine, but I much prefer versions that cook the garlic and rosemary. They keep better and taste better- the rosemary in particular influses the recipe better when heated in oil.

  • Roasted maple-mustard green beans

    • Yildiz100 on August 13, 2018

      Use this recipe only for beans that have been minimally trimmed. I used some older beans that needed trimmed on both ends and some of these beans lost all of their moisture, which seemed to have wicked out through the cut ends during the roasting and became dry, tough, and leathery, even though they weren't overcooked. The ones that were only trimmed on one end were mostly fine. The flavor is just fine. The maple didn't caramelize quite as I hoped and the mustard became very mild.

  • No-fuss risotto with Parmesan and herbs

    • Yildiz100 on November 09, 2015

      I’m so surprised that two people before me gave this a low rating. I’ve made this several times and this technique produces the best risotto I’ve ever made. I usually overcook risotto when using a more traditional method. I follow this technique for every risotto now, and I just substitute whatever add-ons I want to use that day.

  • Braised Brussels sprouts

    • Yildiz100 on January 22, 2015

      These took longer than the 8 to 10 minutes called for in the recipe. I'd say 15 or more. They were just a tiny bit too salty for me with 1/2 tsp of kosher salt in 1/2 cup of water.

  • Poached salmon with dill and sour cream sauce

    • Yildiz100 on May 24, 2019

      I had only 1.25 pounds of salmon (recipe calls for 1.75 to 2 pounds) and it was a good thing. There was just exactly enough sauce. Wouldn't have been enough for the full amount for our taste. Sauce was delicious -maybe too tart for some but I thought it was a good complement to the salmon. Note: the shallot is added in 2 stages and as I was short of it, I didn't add the second half. Was fine like this.

  • Hot cocoa

    • Yildiz100 on September 30, 2018

      I dont understand why CI complicated this by adding both water and half and half to the milk, but the basic ratio of cocoa, sugar, and liquid in this recipe is just right.

  • Ricotta calzones with red peppers, spinach, and goat cheese

    • PinchOfSalt on February 04, 2013

      Made a cross between this and the ricotta-only variant with spinach and ricotta but no goat cheese or red peppers. For simplicity, roughly chopped the spinach and mixed it into the other cheeses, as I was going to assemble the calzones at someone else's home. The filling was very good. However the dough was difficult to work with, despite letting it rest from time to time as I tried to form individual calzones. Also, once baked, I found the dough to be relatively bland and flavorless compared with other dough recipes (such as in American Pie) that ferment overnight in the refrigerator.

    • Rutabaga on March 12, 2017

      The filling here is nice - I especially like the blackened peppers - but it was a little heavy on the ricotta for my family's tastes. I thought the mix of four cheeses would work well, and it did, but even so I realized my family would have preferred a blend of mozzarella, goat cheese, and parmesan only. Because my spinach leaves were small, I decided to leave on the stems, but found they were still too stringy in the filling. And I agree with PinchOfSalt; the dough was a bit bland and "doughy" compared with others I have tried.

  • Pasta and garlic-lemon tuna sauce with capers and parsley

    • jenn on February 09, 2013

      This is one of my easy, go-to, pantry suppers. Although it's a bit unusual, we always add a bit of high quality, shredded parmesan at the end and mix it into the pasta before serving.

    • nancook on February 09, 2016

      Page 199

  • No-fuss risotto with chicken, leek, and garlic

    • infotrop on January 07, 2017

      Excellent and easy risotto recipe. No fuss is right...but the taste is superlative. I tossed in some sauteed mushrooms too.

  • Stuffed portobello mushrooms with spinach and goat cheese

    • infotrop on March 12, 2018

      Tasty main course, vegetarian dish. I halved the recipe and used a mix of baby spinach and baby kale. Watch that breadcrumb topping under the broiler! Served with crispy, roasted potatoes.

  • Rosemary focaccia

    • infotrop on June 11, 2018

      I have a lot of recipes for making focaccia in my cookbooks, but so far, this one has the best results. I made one pan with just rosemary, and the other I topped with pesto, shallots, roasted asparagus, and mozzarella.

  • Tarte Tatin

    • infotrop on September 20, 2018

      Everything seemed fine until I tried to turn this out onto a serving plate. It just didn't loosen up, so I ended up with a tasty but messy mass of caramel, apple, and buttery crust. Not sure what I did wrong... but willing to try again, maybe with Julia Child's recipe?

  • German chocolate cake with banana, macadamia, and coconut filling

    • infotrop on March 11, 2018

      At first I thought I would have too much filling, but it was exactly the right amount. The cakes are thin, so sliced horizontally they make perfect chocolate-y layers. I used unsweetened coconut and thought the cake had just the right amount of sweetness.

  • Twice-baked potatoes with Monterey Jack and pesto

    • Rinshin on February 18, 2015

      Another recipe using some buttermilk and this one was outstanding. Pesto certainly makes these potatoes one rank up of regular baked potatoes or twice baked potatoes.

  • Old-fashioned chicken pot pie

    • Rachaelsb on December 12, 2019

      Pie Crust is deliciously buttery. Very tradtional CPP...Just what I was in the mood for. Crust can be a bit challenging to work with-but I'm sure will just get better with repeat tries...and there will be lots! So fun to make.

  • Ultimate chocolate chip cookies

    • Rachaelsb on December 17, 2019

      Not the ultimate; Alice Medrich is still my favorite baker for choc. chip cookies; but these are still good. Size proportions are great - I have tended to make my choc. cookies small but took the plunge and am glad I did! More of the slightly cakey cookie...not doughy goodness. Fun new technique to brown butter - adds a nice nutty element.

  • Best buttermilk pancakes

    • Rachaelsb on May 08, 2020

      These were the best!!! I have been looking for years for the perfect pancake and this is it. Not fancy or complex - just a perfect pancake. Holds its thickness, cooks up light.

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      These are really great pancakes - moderately fluffy texture, moist, and a very nice flavor. My husband *loves* them. I find it's helpful to measure the liquid ingredients carefully and not add any "extra" - too much liquid makes them overly moist and gives them a heavier texture. Letting them rest a bit (e.g., stashing them in the oven as described in the recipe) also seems to help with working around any heaviness from too much moisture. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/ Magazine/ Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Chicken cacciatore with portobello mushrooms and sage

    • yassoma on August 18, 2016

      I like adding yellow, red, and green bell peppers to this recipe. I also up the garlic and seasoning.

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Very good - sauce is richly flavored. I added some extra wine and accidentally forgot to drain the tomatoes, so I cooked the dish uncovered for about half an hour to further reduce the sauce. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Stir-fried shrimp with snow peas and red bell pepper in hot and sour sauce

    • yassoma on September 25, 2016

      I made this exactly as written (except I subbed the snow peas for sliced purple cabbage) and was not impressed. It was okay, I guess. I made 3 portions for lunch out of this, and it reheats well.

  • Indian curry with potatoes, cauliflower, peas, and chickpeas

    • macfadden on March 22, 2017

      This was well-received by everyone. I didn't bother blending the diced tomatoes and it worked just fine. It was pleasantly creamy from the coconut milk.

  • Snickerdoodles

    • macfadden on December 30, 2016

      I thought these were just okay. It says to scoop the dough into 2 Tablespoon balls, and I used a 2 Tablespoon scoop and got only about two thirds of the cookies the recipe said it would make. The cookies were quite thick and cake-like, and I was kind of tired of them after eating one.

  • Sweet and tangy coleslaw with apple and tarragon

    • bching on December 25, 2015

      Meh. Lots of steps and dirty dishes for what tastes pretty much like any other coleslaw with vinaigrette instead of mayo. We'll finish this but I won't follow this procedure again.

  • Classic pot roast

    • vhague on February 15, 2016

      Made this for Valentine's Day with my husband. Do not skip the step when you split the roast and trim off the fat. Not only does the remaining fat leave the sauce greasier than it should be (adding extra time to de-fat it), but it's pretty unsightly. I added carrots and yukon gold potatoes in the last hour of cooking and they turned out the correct texture. Very tasty recipe, makes the house smell divine.

  • Thick and chewy triple-chocolate cookies

    • vhague on December 23, 2013

      Cookies come out soft and fudgey and retain their chew for a few days.

    • ashallen on December 30, 2019

      These are awesome cookies - dark, very very chocolatey, moist, rich, nice chewiness level. They're popular with my co-workers who refer to them as The Brownie Cookies. This is the same basic recipe as Cook's Illustrated's "Thick and Chewy Double Chocolate Cookies" with the addition of chocolate chips (or chocolate chunks for extra decadence). [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Spicy Sichuan noodles

    • MikeCirillo on March 22, 2016

      I used the spicy Sichuan noodles for two recipe instead. I added a bit of Pixian broad bean chili paste in the beginning of the stir fry. I used facing heaven chilies for some authenticity. I forgot the sesame seed oil and it was still totally delicious.

  • Creamy baked four-cheese pasta with prosciutto and peas

    • Rutabaga on October 27, 2015

      The family loved this one; what's not to like about cheesy baked pasta with a crunchy crumb topping? I changed up the cheese to make use of what I had on hand - goat cheese in place of gorgonzola, Savoy alpine cheese in place of fontina, and a little goat cheddar instead of pecorino (I had the Parmesan, as always). This turned out to be an excellent, creamy, mild yet slightly tangy combination. I prepared the dish ahead of time, and fortunately my husband was able to remove it from the refrigerator early enough for the dish to come close to room temperature before putting it in the oven. About 15 minutes at 500 was enough to thoroughly heat the dish and brown the topping.

  • Roasted broccoli with olives, garlic, oregano, and lemon

    • Rutabaga on November 10, 2015

      This is a good easy variation on standard roasted broccoli. Since broccoli roasts quickly, it's perfect for a weeknight meal. I used kalamata olives sliced in half instead of chopped.

  • Sugar snap peas with lemon, garlic, and basil

    • Rutabaga on August 13, 2015

      Basil and lemon add a nice brightness to fresh sugar snap peas. As always, be wary not to cook the peas too long, even serving them in the hot pan once they are cooked can quickly lead to overcooked peas.

  • Sautéed peas with mushrooms and thyme

    • Rutabaga on February 12, 2015

      This is a a delicious way to dress up frozen peas. It's very quick to prepare, and good for any season. The pease are pleasingly sweet, while the mushrooms add a nice meatiness to the dish.

  • Greek-style garlic-lemon potatoes

    • Rutabaga on October 29, 2018

      I simplified this dish by skipping the oregano and garlic. It's a great easy and quick way to cook up a potato side dish. The potatoes are crispy on the outside, creamy inside, and the kids love them.

  • Greek-style garlic-lemon potatoes with olives and feta

    • Rutabaga on August 25, 2018

      I made this with fingerling potatoes, simply cut in half. It's quite tasty, one to turn to again when we need a substantial side dish with our meal.

  • Braised winter greens with bacon and onion

    • Rutabaga on January 08, 2018

      I made this with lacinato kale, although collards would be a good option. Turkey bacon replaced the regular bacon, so I added some vegetable oil to supplement. All in all, it's a good dish of winter greens, although I prefer Ruth Reichl's kale from My Kitchen Year.

  • Chicken saltimbocca

    • Rutabaga on May 21, 2014

      I enjoy saltimbocca, so decided to make this even though I had no prosciutto. In addition to leaving out the prosciutto, in my haste to get the meal on the table, I forgot to add the butter to the reduced wine sauce. But even with these limitations, the dish was good, and would certainly be even better if you follow the recipe to a T.

    • Rutabaga on November 09, 2017

      I made this again, this time with prosciutto and the reduction sauce, and the whole family raved about it. There wasn't much sauce, but I don't think you need much, it's just a good way to make something out of the flavorful pan drippings, and the saltimbocca is good without it.

  • Chicken piccata with prosciutto

    • Rutabaga on December 15, 2014

      If you are making chicken piccata and have prosciutto on hand, this is a fun way to use it, but I wouldn't seek it out just for that purpose - the regular Cook's Illustrated chicken picatta recipe is fantastic as is.

  • Mustard greens and udon noodles with shiitake-ginger sauce

    • Rutabaga on May 07, 2014

      If you have the ingredients handy, this dish comes together quickly. I feel like adding some konbu to the sauce might give it a more Japanese flavor, so may try that next time. Still, the sauce is nice as is, and you can boost the flavor by adding your own toppings, such as more chili sauce or furikake, to your bowl. I added an additional 7 ounces of udon - half again what the recipe calls for - because 14 ounces just didn't seem like enough. Between my husband, our two-year-old, and I, we ate almost the entire dish with the extra noodles, even though the recipe says it is for four servings. Perhaps they mean it serves four as a side dish, while we made it as a one-pot meal.

  • Fried rice with shrimp, ham, and shiitakes

    • Rutabaga on April 07, 2014

      Here's a great method for fried rice, one you can easily adapt to taste. I especially enjoy using Lundberg's short grain brown rice (it really stands up to the assertiveness of the oyster sauce), and also use a high quality turkey bacon in place of the ham. While I'm sure shrimp would be great, and make this a more solid main dish option, I've never included them.

    • damazinah on July 05, 2015

      Quite good. The oyster sauce gives it a subtle flavor that doesn't overpower the other ingredients. This can easily be adapted to use other meats or vegetables.

  • Farfalle with cherry tomatoes, arugula, and goat cheese

    • Rutabaga on August 14, 2016

      I substituted basil for the arugula, but otherwise followed the recipe as written. It's a great summer pasta dish, brightly flavored and not too heavy. You can easily roast the tomatoes in advance and leave them out until it's time to stir them into the hot pasta.

  • Pasta with arugula, goat cheese, and sun-dried tomato pesto

    • Rutabaga on June 11, 2014

      OK, so I goofed on this one. Instead of reading the recipe carefully, I mistakenly added the arugula to the blender along with the other pesto ingredients; when made as written, the arugula should be tossed with the hot pasta separately, not pureed into the pesto. Frankly, I think the recipe would be most appealing when made as written, but the arugula/sun-dried tomato pesto was still good. As a bonus, my three-year-old ate it this way, as he loves any kind of pesto, but there's no way he would've eaten the wilted arugula leaves when left whole. This simple dish is a great option if you have sun-dried or oven-dried tomatoes on hand.

  • Orange, avocado, and watercress salad with ginger-lime vinaigrette

    • Rutabaga on April 07, 2015

      Avocado and citrus is always a good combination, and the watercress adds a little peppery bite. I found the dressing relatively mild, so would probably add a little extra lime juice and ginger.

  • Tuna salad with lime and horseradish

    • Rutabaga on January 15, 2015

      I served this tuna salad on torta rolls with sliced cherry tomatoes and avocado, and green onion in the salad instead of red. The lime juice gives it a nice fresh flavor, but unfortunately our horseradish must have been past its prime, as you could barely taste it. Fresh horseradish would be better, and olives could be nice addition.

  • Chicken salad with asparagus and sun-dried tomato dressing

    • Rutabaga on June 06, 2017

      I made only the dressing from this recipe. Although I didn't have a full half cup of sun-dried tomatoes, I used the oil from the tomato jar, so the dressing still had plenty of flavor. It was a tasty topping for a hearty salad of leaf lettuce, olives, marinated artichokes, cherry tomatoes, roasted chickpeas, sweet peppers, and feta.

  • Ginger-soy dipping sauce

    • Rutabaga on September 20, 2018

      I made this dipping sauce to serve with tempura shrimp from the freezer. It was just right - tangy, gingery, salty (but not too salty), with just a hint of sweetness to keep it from being overly sour. It's also great stirred into cold soba noodles, and would be a nice over a rice bowl, with veggies... the options are almost endless.

  • Big and chewy oatmeal-chocolate chip cookies

    • Rutabaga on August 17, 2015

      These cookies are quite good, but they weren't exactly what I was hoping for. It's hard to put a finger on it, but they spread thinner than I expected and were perhaps just a little drier than I wanted. Years ago, I made what I thought were the perfect oatmeal cookies, and unfortunately I cannot remember what recipe that was (it was before I joined EYB, of course)! But these were a good substitute, and I agree with the authors that a hint of nutmeg is preferable to cinnamon here.

  • Chewy chocolate cookies

    • Rutabaga on October 08, 2018

      My husband surprised me by making these cookies, and they are delicious, especially warm from the oven. They are incredibly rich and chocolatey, a big hit with the whole family, who started calling them "brownie cookies".

  • Quick cinnamon buns with buttermilk icing

    • Rutabaga on April 07, 2014

      You might almost be fooled into thinking these are real yeast cinnamon rolls instead of a quick bread. Baked tightly together in a cake pan, they come out of the oven tender, moist, and nicely crusted with the buttery cinnamon sugar filling. They are so good, I hardly feel the need to put in the extra time that yeast rolls would require. I find them sweet enough on their own, so prefer not to make the buttermilk icing.

  • Old-fashioned spaghetti and meatballs

    • Summerlandsky on April 02, 2014

      Excellent recipe. The only thing I changed was to leave some of the oil in the pan from cooking the meatballs instead of wiping the pan down before simmering the sauce. Also be sure to start the pasta water pretty early. It took me forever to boil, and the sauce ended up cooking down thicker than I'd like because of the extra time.

    • ashallen on December 31, 2019

      Excellent, classic spaghetti and meatballs. Meatballs are tender and flavorful with a great browned exterior. Their richness balances really well with the tomato sauce. My husband likes them so much that he happily eats them without the sauce! The pork+beef mixture as specified in the recipe is great - I also frequently make these with all beef. I use less oil than specified in the recipe to brown the meatballs - basically enough to film the pan. They're a bit less luscious but still plenty rich. Making each meatball a bit smaller than specified in the recipe for a total of anywhere from 14-21, cooked in two batches, works fine. We like more tomato sauce than specified in the recipe so I usually make 1.5-2x the specified quantity. Freezes well. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Steak au poivre with brandied cream sauce

    • HerBoudoir on February 11, 2016

      I usually make this with cognac....wonderful!

  • Stir-fried shrimp with garlicky eggplant, scallions, and cashews

    • DanieleK on October 16, 2014

      Excellent! very good with shiitake mushrooms added, too.

  • Spicy gazpacho with chipotle chiles and lime

    • thecharlah on April 12, 2016

      Tasty, but very sour.

  • Tandoori chicken

    • mamacrumbcake on February 26, 2019

      This was tasty and pretty easy. The most effort was involved in grating the ginger. Costco chicken thighs are larger and need a longer time to cook, I think at least 30 minutes before switching to broiler.

  • Stuffed zucchini with corn, black beans, and chipotle chiles

    • damazinah on July 20, 2017

      I made this with some large pattypan squash, which made for a really nice presentation. I thought the use of potatoes in a Southwestern dish was a little odd, so I replaced them with quinoa.

  • Swedish meatballs

    • damazinah on March 29, 2017

      Really good. I was a bit hesitant about mixing the meatballs in the mixer (since I've always heard to handle meatballs gently) but they did come out quite fluffy and fine-textured. The sauce was a bit thin, unless you plan to serve the meatballs on top of rice or egg noodles.

  • Roasted carrots

    • damazinah on June 07, 2015

      Good. I combined 2 of the variations to suit what I had on hand - roasted carrots with parsnips, shallots, & rosemary, with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice before serving.

    • damazinah on June 07, 2015

      Good. I combined 2 of the variations to suit what I had on hand - roasted carrots with parsnips, shallots, & rosemary, with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice before serving.

  • Pasta and summer squash with parsley, shallots, lemon, capers, and goat cheese

    • damazinah on July 07, 2018

      Really good. I had to modify it a bit for a meat-&-potatoes-with-veggies-cooked-to-death family member (who ultimately had 3 servings). I continued cooking the squash & shallots till they caramelized nicely, deglazed the pan with white wine, added (drained) canned diced tomatoes in lieu of grape tomatoes, and stirred the goat cheese in to create a creamy coating.

  • Beer batter cheese bread

    • damazinah on March 19, 2017

      Meh. Not the best beer bread I've ever had. Three tablespoons of sugar seemed a bit much, but I added it in anyway. Sure enough, the bread was too sweet for a beer bread.

  • Chocolate-chunk oatmeal cookies with pecans and dried cherries

    • damazinah on June 26, 2016

      These are HUGE cookies - the recipe calls for 1/4 cup of dough per cookie & they flatten out as they bake. They were also a bit too sweet for my taste. Probably won't make them again, but if I did, I'd cut the brown sugar back to 1-1/4 cup and use 1/8 cup of dough per cookie.

  • Raspberry streusel bars

    • damazinah on November 22, 2015

      Really yummy, with a rich buttery crisp and great raspberry flavor

  • All-purpose cornbread

    • Lepa on September 30, 2019

      If you appreciate cornbreads that contain some flour and are slightly sweet, this is a good one for you. It had a lovely plush texture that we really enjoyed. This is in the running for our house cornbread recipe!

  • Oatmeal scones with dried cherries and hazelnuts

    • Lepa on October 29, 2017

      These have a few extra steps because you have to toast the oats and hazelnuts before mixing the other ingredients but this step resulted in scones with a complex, nuanced layer of flavors that we really enjoyed. The scones also had a wonderful texture. We ate them with clotted cream and jam, which really put them over the top.

  • Simple ginger cream scones

    • Lepa on February 12, 2017

      These were simply fantastic. The texture was perfect and flavor was amazing, too. Very easy to put together. We ate it with clotted cream and orange marmelade and it was the best breakfast I can remember eating for a very long time. Note: I made a half batch of the same recipe with currants because one son doesn't like ginger and after eating them side by side, our whole family strongly preferred the ginger scones.

  • Scrambled eggs with asparagus, prosciutto, and Parmesan

    • Lepa on May 09, 2018

      I was eating alone so I adapted the recipe a bit. I used one whole bunch of asparagus, and 1/3 of the other ingredients (eggs, half and half, cheese, prosciutto). It was satisfying, easy and good.

  • Arugula salad with pear, almonds, goat cheese, and apricots

    • Lepa on March 23, 2017

      We enjoyed this. It was bright and delicious.

  • Rice pilaf

    • Lepa on November 30, 2019

      I made this with a fish that had a rich, creamy sauce and I needed something plain to accompany it (but not too plain!) This rice was plain but also good. I did need to add a little more water at the end because it was dry and a bit hard after 16 minutes. I added about 1/4 cup water, put the lid back on and let it cook for another 3 minutes. The resulting rice was perfect.

  • Split pea and ham soup

    • ChefJacki on January 23, 2016

      Uses ham steak and bacon, not a ham bone

  • Creamy mushroom soup

    • NJChicaa on February 15, 2016

      not worth the effort, basic mushroom flavor, no "wow" factor at all, very disappointing

    • darylm503 on February 20, 2017

      p. 84 While good, this soup was not spectacular. It lacks deep mushroom flavor and needs something for the back of the palette. Next time, I plan on reducing the water to 3 cups instead of 4 and using an entire ounce of porcini. I'll also reserve some of the cooked mushrooms to add back in after blending. I did not make the "Sauteed Wild Mushroom Garnish".

  • Pan-roasted broccoli with lemon browned butter

    • NJChicaa on April 01, 2018

      Not terrible but not very good either. The flavors here (broccoli, lemon, garlic, brown butter, shallot, thyme) don't go together in a way that makes much sense. I won't make it again.

  • Chicken Vesuvio

    • NJChicaa on February 24, 2016

      Absolutely delicious. Definitely worth trying!

  • Latin-style chicken and rice (Arroz con pollo)

    • SenseiHeidi on November 15, 2019

      I was going to rate this as rather boring for the 2 hours of time involved, then I ate a bowl with a squirt of lime juice, extra salt and black pepper. Yum. Makes enough to feed 8 to 10 easily

  • Stir-fried beef and broccoli with oyster sauce

    • SenseiHeidi on December 05, 2019

      Yummy! And rather easy to make.

  • Wicked good Boston cream pie

    • Piebaker on August 30, 2017

      Just made this again for a family birthday. One of my most requested recipes. Really excellent instructions for a moist cake, intensely flavored filling and perfect glaze. I use a ceramic cake pan for the hot milk sponge cake which seems to bake more evenly though it takes a few more minutes. It works best for me to make the cake on the day before and the filling and glaze on the day the cake is served.

  • Chicken biryani

    • cpayton3440 on February 19, 2017

      p.346 Delicious. Much better than the cauliflower biryani recipe in ATK vegetarian.

  • Classic egg salad

    • leilx on August 12, 2018

      Good but rather plain for my tastes. I preferred it with some relish in it.

  • No-fuss risotto with chicken and herbs

    • Dannausc on August 11, 2018

      Quite easy for a risotto and tasty too!

  • Stir-fried Sichuan-style shrimp with zucchini, red bell pepper, and peanuts

    • Dannausc on August 11, 2018

      Good and easy

  • Bacon-wrapped meatloaf with brown sugar-ketchup glaze

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      This is a very good, classic meatloaf recipe - I particularly like the suggestion for using quick oats instead of bread crumbs and the sticky ketchup glaze. The bacon didn't crisp by the time the meatloaf was done - I ended up popping it in the oven by itself after the meatloaf came out to finish cooking it. I usually use the cookbook's "Glazed All-Beef Meatloaf" recipe instead of this one. Instead of using a bacon wrap to self-baste the meatloaf, it includes finely shredded Monterey Jack cheese in the meat mixture for extra moisture - very nice! [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Glazed all-beef meatloaf

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      After some hauntingly bad childhood experiences with meat loaf, I never thought I'd say this, but...this meat loaf is delicious!! I initially made it only because my husband loves meat loaf sandwiches and now he has to share. Great savory flavor, delectably sticky and tangy glaze, and a coherent yet tender texture that works great for sandwiches. Recipe handles modifications very well - I've left out one or more of the mustard/garlic/paprika/tomato juice at one point or another and it's still been very good. Tomato paste whisked in water or extra chicken stock has subbed for tomato juice. Quick oats or fresh toasted bread crumbs have worked fine in place of crushed saltines (bump up salt/soy sauce a bit). Freezes very well - I usually pre-slice it so my husband can easily grab a single slice for a sandwich or meal. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Sautéed turkey cutlets with honey-mustard pan sauce

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      Very good - I made the turkey cutlets with the "Warm Spiced Pan Sauce with Currants and Almonds" which was great. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Warm-spiced pan sauce with currants and almonds

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      Delicious pan sauce for sautéed turkey cutlets. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Giblet pan gravy

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      This is an excellent recipe for classic turkey gravy - deeply flavorful. It's good with or without the white wine. Also very good with or without the giblets. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Baked bread stuffing with fresh herbs

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Excellent stuffing recipe. It cleverly bakes stuffing with turkey/chicken wings nestled on top in order to replicate the flavor/moisture you get from true stuffing baked inside a turkey. Texture was very moist. Flavors were excellent. Now for personal preferences... We're not sure we like it better than our usual, non-turkey wing Cook's Illustrated recipe (circa 1998) without a side-by-side comparison. It does require some extra steps beyond that other recipe and I find it's pretty easy to replicate some baked-in-bird flavors with the 1998 recipe by reserving drippings and rendered fat from roast chicken and subbing them for chicken stock and butter. The moisture from the wings prevented a crunchy crust from forming on top of this stuffing - I missed it! I tried chewing on a couple of the leftover turkey/chicken wings but found them pretty tough. I used them for stock vs. soup/salad as suggested by Cooks. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Cornbread stuffing with sausage

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      This recipe convinced my bread stuffing-loving husband that he really likes cornbread stuffing, too! Excellent recipe - moist, flavorful and always comes out well. Also handles modification well. We prefer our stuffing without sausage - I substitute 1 extra egg + 2-3 tbsp rendered roast chicken fat for it. Another substitution is an extra 1/2 c yellow onion for the garlic and I usually double the sage and thyme. Making a half batch works great (full recipe makes a *ton* of stuffing!). I usually bake half-batches in a 9x13 Pyrex dish so there's more surface area for brown crisping on top. Leftovers keep well and it also does well in the freezer if sufficiently protected from drying out. The base cornbread recipe is great, too - even if I'm making just a half-batch of stuffing, I'll usually make a full batch of cornbread so we have a bunch to eat straight-up. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Golden cornbread

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      This is a great cornbread. Not too sweet - you can taste the cornmeal - and an excellent light crumb. I like it best the day it's made but it's still quite good the next day. I've made other cornbreads that were moister but their texture wasn't as light. I originally made it for a Cook's Illustrated's cornbread stuffing recipe (and still do - that's another great recipe!), but I now make this to eat on its own, too. Cutting the recipe in half and baking it in an 8x8-inch pan also works well. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Simple cranberry-orange sauce

    • ashallen on December 30, 2019

      I love this classic cranberry sauce. Very, very easy to make. Holds well if made several days ahead of time. Handles variations well. Orange liqueur is great (Triple Sec's good) but it's also fine without - it'll seem a bit sweeter. Natural orange extract or a few drops orange oil substitute well for orange zest. Using light brown sugar instead of white sugar adds some more complexity to the flavor. Recipe gives a recommended cooking time, but this is easy to cook to taste - the longer it cooks, the more it'll have the dark purplish color of canned jelly (very pretty!) - flavors also mellow a bit more. Making a half-batch works fine. Leftovers can be frozen and are great stirred into oatmeal!! [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Pork chops with balsamic vinegar and sweet peppers

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      Everything in this dish was cooked just fine - textures of the peppers and the pork chops were all good. There was just something about the flavor combination that didn't appeal to me! Perhaps I'd like the version made with white wine vinegar better... [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Glazed pork chops

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      Great recipe. I can be picky about strong sour flavors in savory dishes, but the large amount of vinegar in the sauce for these pork chops cooked down into a deliciously tangy sauce. It's also worked well with a mixture of half red wine vinegar + half sherry vinegar as a substitute for cider or white vinegar. Relatively quick/easy to pull together, too. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Oven-roasted salmon

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      This is a great technique for cooking fish that I've also used for other non-delicate fish fillets/steaks - very easy, quick, and an excellent way to contain mess/smells (relative to pan sautéing). Unevenly shaped fillets can be cut down into smaller pieces of even thickness and removed from the oven as they finish. I skip the recommended step of slashing the salmon skin - it was fiddly and didn't seem to make much of a difference in the final product. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Sautéed fish fillets with coconut-red curry sauce

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      This recipe makes a delicious sauce with complex flavors and a nice thickness - great for serving with mild-flavored fish. Relatively short and simple cooking process. Worked well with the Thai Kitchen red curry paste sold in most supermarkets - I used 4 tsp as suggested by the recipe for "those who like assertive flavors."(!) I grated vs. minced the ginger for a slightly smoother texture. The sauce was too sour for me when it first came off the stove, but was easily balanced out by stirring in a bit more sugar. I'm thinking the sauce would also be great with chicken and rice, though I haven't tried those combinations yet. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Pan-roasted chicken breasts with sweet-tart red wine sauce

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      This came out very well. Chicken was tender, moist, and well-flavored - even the skin was tasty! Sauce was also nicely flavored. Pretty easy to make, too. Making a half-batch worked fine. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Chicken and rice with Indian spices

    • ashallen on December 31, 2019

      This is one of several variations Cook's Illustrated suggested for their basic Chicken and Rice recipe. Basic chicken and rice can be a mild-tasting (though luscious) dish, so I really liked the extra flavors from the spices in this version. I've fiddled with the original cooking technique in this recipe to get the rice/chicken textures I prefer. I now cook the dish in a covered 8-quart Le Creuset dutch oven in the oven vs. simmering on the stovetop - I find that the rice and chicken cook more evenly that way. The Le Creuset pot has not needed any additional sealing (e.g., with foil) - in fact, I've cut back a bit on the amount of liquid added because the rice was coming out a bit too moist for my taste. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Chicken Francese

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      Overall, I thought this dish was just OK. The sauce was too tart and lemony for my taste - I very much ended up picking out side dishes that would help with balancing out the flavors and spreading the sauce around. Between that and the typical spatter associated with pan-frying meat, I haven't felt inspired to make this dish again. Texture of the chicken was good, however, and those who like strong lemon sauces would probably enjoy this recipe. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Roasted broccoli

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      My husband really likes this method for cooking broccoli. I'm not as big a fan, but he loves broccoli more than I do! The broccoli wedges seem to be an odd shape, but they work. Watch closely to make sure they don't char too much! [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Simple lasagna with hearty tomato-meat sauce

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      We make this often. It's not an elegant lasagna - lots of tomato sauce and cheese(!) - but it's totally tasty and easy (for a lasagna) to pull together. I like it with ricotta cheese as specified in the recipe, but my husband prefers cottage cheese. When fresh basil hasn't been available, ~1/2 cup basil pesto has been an OK substitution. Ground beef works well as a substitute for meatloaf mix. After making it many times in a standard 9x13-inch pyrex dish and dealing with periodic oozing over the edges during baking, I got a deeper 9x13 dish to contain it better. A 10x15-inch pyrex also works. We also really like the tomato meat sauce in this recipe as a sauce for regular pasta. I'll often make a double batch and, after taking what I need for the lasagna, will add some oregano to the remaining sauce and simmer it slowly for 1-2 hours before packing it into the freezer for future meals. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/ Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Pasta and tomato tuna sauce with garlic and mint

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Very nice and quick/easy pasta sauce with great flavors. I substituted basil for mint since that's what I had on hand - worked well. A bit salty - maybe because I used salted tuna? [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Sweet potato casserole

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      This is really delicious. I don't like a lot of sweet potato casseroles (it's the marshmallows fault!), but this one doesn't have marshmallows and is silky, creamy, and really flavorful without being sticky sweet. I used Red Garnet sweet potatoes and made a 3/4 batch - worked great! [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Browned and braised cauliflower with garlic, ginger, and soy

    • ashallen on December 31, 2019

      I'm not fond of the flavor of cauliflower. However, I really like this dish because once you finish cooking the cauliflower in all that delicious sesame oil, garlic, ginger, and soy, it tastes mostly like those ingredients and not so much like cauliflower! Yum! [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Glazed carrots with ginger and rosemary

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      These have great, rich flavor. Recipe specifies 3 tablespoons of sugar which I've found to be too sweet for my taste and have cut back to 1-2 tablespoons. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Sautéed baby spinach with pecans and feta

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      Very good - the rich flavor of the pecans goes really well with the earthy flavor of the spinach. I use 2-4 tablespoons of shallot which is less than the amount called for in the recipe. The original amount seemed realllllly shallot-y to me (even though I really like shallots). [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Creamy corn pudding

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Very nice - simultaneously creamy and brightly sweet from the corn (though not sticky sweet!). I leave out the cayenne pepper and find that leftovers are really good for breakfast. I've tried making this with frozen corn when fresh corn is out of season, but the skins on the frozen corn kernels have been a bit tougher with the yellow corn I've tried being a bit tougher than the white corn. Next time I use frozen corn, I'll try pulsing it a bit in the food processor first to chop it up a bit. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Crisp roasted potatoes

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      This is a standard dish in our house. Great technique for getting well-browned potatoes in the oven. I've morphed the technique somewhat over the years - instead of cutting potatoes into rounds and flipping them one-by-one during roasting, I now just cut them into ~1" wedge-chunks and flip them in groups. They're not quite as evenly browned as intended by the original recipe technique (which is a good technique), but we've been happy and it's been a bit less fiddly. In my current oven, convection mode produces much better browning than regular mode, though the potatoes can get desiccated and chewy if I overdo it. I usually do some mix of the two modes to get the texture I'm looking for. Leftovers are surprisingly good - my husband loves them for breakfast with eggs. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Roasted red bell peppers

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Good method for making basic roasted red bell peppers. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Pasta with creamy tomato sauce

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      We love, love, love this pasta sauce, though it's creamy rich so we consider it a special treat. Flavors are absolutely delicious and multilayered. I usually add the wine and uncooked tomatoes at the end of the cooking process to taste since the acidity of the sauce varies with the ingredients available. Basil pesto has worked in place of fresh basil in a pinch, but fresh basil is really best. Doubling the recipe works fine. Freezes well. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Spaghetti puttanesca

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      This is a robustly flavored pasta dish that my husband loves (I like it, too!). Flavors are both rich/savory and bracing. No fishy flavor from the anchovies (unless I accidentally chop the parsley/olives on the same cutting board I used for the anchovies - oops). Great with parmesan or feta cheese mixed in. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Hearty vegetable soup

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      This soup has good, satisfying flavors, particularly from the mushrooms, and a pleasant, light texture. Freezes fine. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Rich and velvety shrimp bisque

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      This is a delicious bisque - full flavored and, as the recipe title says, velvet-textured and smooth. I don't have a chinois fine but straining the bisque through a fine mesh metal strainer worked well. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Hearty lentil soup with fragrant spices

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Good soup, though the flavor from the spices didn't grab me. I like all of the ingredients called for - there was just something about their combination in this recipe that seemed kind of muddied. Flavor did seem to improve somewhat by the next day. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Pasta e fagioli

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      Nice soup with a tomato-y broth - pleasant, homey, and comforting. No fishy flavor from the anchovies, just additional savoriness. I substituted chickpeas once for the cannellini beans but prefer the cannellini. Orzo works nicely for the pasta. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Chicken cacciatore with white wine and tarragon

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Great flavors. Recipe works great as written. I've also substituted yellow onion for shallot and 1 tsp dried thyme for fresh thyme and it's still worked well. Substituting 2 tsp fresh rosemary for tarragon did not go well, however (even though I usually love rosemary). Also, making a half-batch version of this recipe has worked fine. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Chicken Provençal

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      My husband is a big fan of this dish in both the "traditional" and "saffron-orange-basil" versions - moist chicken pieces with a flavorful sauce that's both tomato-y and savory. I like it best with bone-in chicken thighs - bone-in chicken breast seemed a bit dry to me. Boneless chicken thighs have also worked out OK. Leftovers keep well. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Chicken Provençal with saffron, orange, and basil

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      My husband is a big fan of this dish in both the "traditional" and "saffron-orange-basil" versions - moist chicken pieces with a flavorful sauce that's both tomato-y and savory. I like it best with bone-in chicken thighs - bone-in chicken breast seemed a bit dry to me. Boneless chicken thighs have also worked out OK. Leftovers keep well. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Chicken paprikash

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Very nice dish with a creamy tomato-pepper sauce. I substituted additional red bell peppers for green bell peppers since I'm not a fan of the latter in this type of dish. Making a half-batch worked fine. [Cross-post for Annual Edition /Magazine /Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Chicken tikka masala

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      Very nice dish - great flavors and moist, tender chicken chunks. Don't make the mistake of simmering the cooked chicken chunks in the sauce - I did that once and they were considerably less tender and juicy! While we've enjoyed this recipe very much, we love the flavors of the 660 Curries version even more (though that recipe does specify pre-prep of a few inputs, i.e., ginger paste, garlic paste, garam masala). [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Beef stroganoff

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Tender beef morsels in a deliciously creamy sauce - this was great. I did make the effort to track down the bavette/flap meat cut specified as the first choice for the recipe - it was available only from a specialty butcher in my area. On the positive side, the meat was really high-quality and so delicious after the initial searing that I felt bit bad eating it with the creamy sauce which mellowed the beef flavor!! Overall the sauce had good flavor - I did find the tomato paste to be a bit distracting in terms of both flavor and color (made the sauce kind of pink) - I'll try leaving it out/cutting down the quantity next time. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/ Magazine/ Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Onion-braised beef brisket

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      This is a great, classically flavored brisket recipe. Savory, beefy flavors and very tender slices of meat. Recipe specifies cooking for 3.5-4 hours - we like our brisket super-tender so I usually go 5-6 hours. The onions that cook alongside the beef are delicious, but my husband's not fond of their squishy texture. I get around this by pureeing them into the sauce which adds great flavor and a bit of sweetness to it. Doing so also increases sauce volume, making for an excellent sauce-to-meat ratio. Resting the meat in the sauce overnight significantly improves its texture - I really try to avoid serving it the day it's cooked. Awesome with mashed potatoes. Leftovers are great. Freezes very well, particularly when meat slices are nestled in sauce. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Classic pot roast with root vegetables

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Solid, basic pot roast recipe. My husband enjoyed it. I'm more of a beef stew vs. pot roast fan - I like how fat/membrane can melt away in stews whereas they seem to linger in pot roasts - but maybe I just haven't had the right pot roast yet! I wasn't able to get one of the beef cuts specified in the recipe and instead used regular beef chuck. The internal temperature of the roast never quite reached the 210F specified in the recipe. Adding root vegetables part-way through cooking brought the temperature down further. Veggies weren't well-cooked after the time specified in the recipe, which is odd because Cook's Illustrated's usually very reliable on timing. I ended up taking veggies out of the oven pot and cooking them separately on the stovetop to finish. Maybe I was opening and closing the oven to check on everything too much?? Meat was tender - though we would've liked it to have been even more so! [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Old-fashioned beef stew with bacon, mushrooms, and pearl onions

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Good beef stew. Flavor profile is basically a simplified version of Julia Child's Boeuf Bourguignon - similar ingredients, but flavors aren't as deeply developed or complex as either the JC recipe or the "Modern Beef Burgundy" recipe that Cook's Ill. initially published in 2013 (one of my favorites!). This recipe's less involved than the JC recipe, however, which is nice. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • French pork and white bean casserole (Cassoulet)

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      This is a very rich dish that we found best to eat in small portions. The flavors are very wintery - meat and starch! I substituted pork bratwurst for French garlic sausage and probably lost some flavor by doing so. Adding a lot of parsley towards the end was a good try at adding back some of the aromatic flavors that seemed to have cooked away, but for me its flavor clashed with the other flavors in the casserole. Maybe it'd help to add some additional thyme later in the cooking process. The beans were my favorite part - very tender, rich, and flavorful. It was possible to skim some, but not a lot, of fat after cooking - most of it seemed to adhere to the beans (hmmm, no wonder they tasted good). Overall we thought this was fine, but not fabulous. Freezes well. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Sweet and spicy roasted red pepper dip

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      This is a really delicious version of muhammara. Recipe calls for 2 tbsp molasses or pomegranate molasses. I start with 1 tbsp pomegranate molasses and add more to taste since 2 tbsp has sometimes been too sweet for me. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Butternut squash soup

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      Good! Very smooth soup with clear squash flavor - this recipe doesn't have the "pumpkin pie" flavor that some butternut squash soup recipes have. The heavy cream, however, does mellow the squash flavor. My favorite of the three Cook's Illustrated butternut squash soup recipes I've tried to date is the one published in the Sept/Oct 2011 magazine issue which does not contain any dairy. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Spiced pumpkin cheesecake

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      Very nice cheesecake. I agree with darcie_b that the texture's very nice - it's very smooth and creamy. I did use the full amount of cream specified in the recipe and it set up fine. I wish the pumpkin and spice flavors were stronger, but that's personal preference - removing 1/2 the cream would probably help with that. I'm not sure I'll make this one again, however, because I have another pumpkin spice cheesecake recipe that doesn't call for patting the pumpkin puree dry with paper towels (I found the process to be kind of fiddly) and has a higher ratio of crust (gingersnap crust!) to filling which I like in this particular dessert as well as that stronger pumpkin/spice flavor I love. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Chocolate roulade

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      People love this cake - it's delicious, beautiful, and super-festive for the holidays. Deeply chocolatey but balanced by the espresso mascarpone cream filling. Moist without gumminess - the cream filling moistens the chocolate sponge cake around it and the chocolate ganache seals all of that good moisture in. The only drawback is that it doesn't make a ton of cake for the effort required - it serves 8-10 quite modestly (especially since it's so delicious and it's nice to have more than one slice!). Also, there are several steps and rolling up the cake can be fiddly - I don't make this when I'm in a rush. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Classic pound cake

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      This cake smelled and tasted like Sara Lee pound cake! The texture was different, however - more foam-like and drier. However, I accidentally added all of the eggs at once instead of beating them in one-by-one - so no star rating for now since I didn't put it together properly. Worth trying again to see if the texture improves. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Chocolate sour cream bundt cake

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      A very nice chocolate cake - good strong chocolate flavor and moist. I've made it a few times and have found that it moves quickly from seeming underbaked to being overbaked. If overbaked, the chocolate flavor's not as strong and it seems a bit dry, so I keep a close eye on it. Definitely use bittersweet vs. semisweet chocolate (as specified in the recipe) - the flavor difference is noticeable. The recipe also very specifically calls for natural cocoa powder, but I've had it turn out well with alkalized/dutch-processed cocoa powder, too. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Yellow cupcakes with chocolate ganache frosting

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      These were easy to make. They have excellent moistness and a flavor with a slight tang from the sour cream. I didn't have my ingredients at room temperature, though, and I think that might have caused a bit of gumminess in the texture. The chocolate ganache frosting was delicious and intensely chocolatey to the point that you couldn't really taste the cake once it was frosted! It'll be fun to experiment with other frosting flavors. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • German chocolate sheet cake

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      I need to try this recipe a second time - I chose to make it as a 9x13-inch sheet cake vs. the two 9-inch round cake layers otherwise specified in the recipe (each then halved to create a 4-layer cake). I ended up with a thick frosting layer perched on top of a thick, not particularly moist cake slab. If I had made the layer cake, the frosting sandwiched between the thinner cake layers would have done a much better job of moistening the cake! I took the cake from the oven once the center reached 201F and it was a bit dry - I'd remove it sooner next time. While German chocolate isn't my favorite chocolate cake (I like more chocolate), the flavors of this cake worked very harmoniously with the coconut-pecan filling. The coconut-pecan filling was delicious (even though my pecans weren't very flavorful) and works great on yellow butter cake, too. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • German chocolate cake with coconut-pecan filling

    • ashallen on February 20, 2020

      Moist and a good chocolate flavor that works very well with the delicious frosting. Even though German Chocolate isn't my favorite type of chocolate cake, I think this is a great version of it. I removed cake from oven just after edges started to separate from pan sides. Centers were 195F. I greased pans with unsalted butter and dusted with unsweetened cocoa vs. the baking spray + flour as suggested in recipe - cakes unmolded nicely. Recipe says to use ~1 cup of frosting between each layer - I used a scant 1 cup so there would be a bit extra to make a thicker, prettier layer on the top surface. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/ Magazine/ Cook's Illustrated Cookbook/ Leite's Culinaria]

  • Thick and chewy double-chocolate cookies

    • ashallen on December 30, 2019

      These are awesome cookies - dark, very very chocolatey, moist, rich, nice chewiness level. They're popular with my co-workers who refer to them as The Brownie Cookies. This is the same basic recipe as Cook's Illustrated's "Triple Chocolate Cookies" without the addition of chocolate chips (or chocolate chunks for extra decadence). [Cross -post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Peanut butter cookies

    • ashallen on December 31, 2019

      My current favorite peanut butter cookies. Deep peanut flavor, moist center, moderately chewy. Instead of white sugar + dark brown sugar as called for in the recipe, I usually use a bit less light brown sugar + 1 tbsp unsulfured molasses. The molasses adds some additional complexity to the flavor and makes the cookies a bit moister and chewier. The recipe's worked with either chunky or creamy peanut butter and with or without chopped peanuts (though they can seem a bit sweet without the peanuts). [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Perfect lemon bars

    • ashallen on December 31, 2019

      These are excellent lemon bars - great tangy lemon flavor, great filling texture, and a buttery, tender crust. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Key lime bars

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      Very tasty with strong lime flavor. Lime filling had a smooth, creamy texture and the crust had good thickness and firmness. Really good! [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Rich and tender yellow layer cake with buttercream frosting

    • ashallen on December 30, 2019

      A delicious, buttery cake. My first attempt had a few texture issues that I believe were due to a couple of mistakes I made during mixing (including not having all ingredients at room temperature). Definitely worth a second try. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Molasses spice cookies

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      One of my all-time favorite cookies - so good, they make me want to hide them somewhere so I can eat them all myself!!! Intensely flavorful, soft, moist, spicy, and chewy and a light crunch on the outside from the rolling sugar. I usually use a darker vs. lighter molasses - I like the deep and dark flavor it gives. These keep their flavor and their chew for several days after baking. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Chocolate-dipped pistachio shortbread

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      My favorite shortbreads taste strongly of butter and have a firm texture - these unfortunately came out pale with a muted butter flavor and a texture that was a bit gummy/doughy. I made them in a very cold kitchen, however, and would like to try them again under more normal conditions. The chocolate coating, however, worked very well! [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Almond sablés

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      These are very nice cookies. Crisp and lightly sandy texture, buttery nut flavor, and not super-sweet. I have another recipe for hazelnut sables that I saved from a forgotten magazine/newspaper, however, that I like even better - it has a higher proportion of butter to flour and a deeper flavor. It also skips the step in this recipe of boiling an egg and sieving the yolk and is therefore a bit simpler to pull together. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Thin, crisp gingerbread cookies

    • ashallen on December 30, 2019

      These cookies are nicely crispy and have a good, solid spicy flavor - more flavorful than some other gingerbread men recipes I've tried. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Almond spritz cookies

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Very nice cookies. Dough worked well in cookie press. Remove cookies from baking sheet while still a bit warm and flexible, otherwise they crisp up and break when removed. Good recipe - but the Betty Crocker Picture Cookbook recipe is still my favorite! [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Classic brownies

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Nice brownies with good flavor. I've had brownies ranging from cake-like to fudge-like - these are about halfway between the two textures. Personally I prefer my brownies to be fudgier/chewier, but I still thought these were good. Co-workers enjoyed. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Classic apple pie

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      As the recipe title says, this is a classic apple pie. Delicious and very pretty with a tender and flaky crust. I missed the extra-buttery flavor of an all-butter crust but my husband really liked the more tender texture of this butter+shortening crust. The apples cook down *a lot* - it might look like they won't fit when they're uncooked, but persevere and squeeze them in for a well-filled pie once baked. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Fresh lattice-top peach pie

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Good peach pie recipe, though I ended up tweaking it a bunch to suit my preferences, e.g, I wanted more filling relative to the quantity of crust (and I usually love lots of crust!). Flavor and texture of the peach filling is very good. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Classic pecan pie

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      This is a delicious pie. I haven't historically been a big pecan pie fan because of the high sweetness level and gelatinous texture in some versions, but this one was great. Pecan flavor came through clearly along with vanilla and caramel flavors. Crust was great - tender, flavorful, and no filling leakage. Filling texture was very good - no pie-jelly in this one! [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Coconut cream pie

    • ashallen on January 04, 2020

      This is an *awesome* pie!!! One of my favorites - this is one of those desserts I only make if there are many other people around to share it with because I will otherwise eat the entire thing. It has a wonderfully balanced, creamy, coconut-y flavor. Texture is great - light vs. heavy. The flavor and texture of the animal cracker crumb crust works great with the filling. The original recipe calls for 1.5 cups of heavy cream for the whipped cream topping which makes a lot of whipped cream - I sometimes dial that back a bit (anywhere down to 1 cup heavy cream) so the coconut cream filling can shine through more clearly. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Simple stovetop rice pudding

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      This is my favorite rice pudding recipe - I "retired" my other stovetop rice pudding recipes after finding this one! Creamy, nicely thickened, tender rice, and great flavor. The recipe's great as written, but I've found that there's a fair amount of flexibility around the ratio of milk to half-and-half, so it can be made richer or leaner to taste. A mixture of heavy cream and milk also works well as a half-and-half substitute. When the pudding's come out thicker than I'd like, I stir in some fresh cream or half-and-half to thin it a bit - this also gives it a wonderful fresh cream flavor on top of the cooked cream flavors. When eating the pudding plain, I like it to be a bit sweeter than specified in the recipe and bump up the sugar to 3/4 cup. Making a half-batch works fine. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Vanilla semifreddo with almonds and amaretti

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Delicious! I used finely ground toasted hazelnuts instead of almonds and hazelnut biscotti instead of amaretti. Hazelnut flavor was solid but not intense. I loved the cookie bits and would probably use even more next time. Texture fell somewhere between fluffy ice cream and whipped cream. Unlike homemade ice cream, it took a bit of time to start melting once plated - so cool!! It kept very well in the freezer (tightly wrapped) over several weeks and was easy to slice even when fully frozen. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Fresh peach ice cream

    • ashallen on December 31, 2019

      Very good peach ice cream - some fresh peach flavor persists and contrasts really nicely with the creamy ice cream base. I cut the peaches in 1/2-inch chunks and found that to be a bit too big for me - they were also a bit icy in spots. I'll cut them smaller next time. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Grilled glazed salmon

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Excellent recipe for grilled salmon - both the flavors and the texture are super. We usually use the very simple (but delicious) maple-soy sauce glaze, though the recipe also has directions for honey-mustard and maple-chipotle glazes. Cutting the recipe in half works fine. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Poached salmon with herb and caper vinaigrette

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      If you like the flavor of poached salmon (I'm a moderate fan), this is a nice method for making it. I used parsley and tarragon as specified in the recipe, but I think other herbs would probably work well, too. I thought the herb and caper vinaigrette was just so-so (I'm not a big caper fan, though). I wouldn't make the vinaigrette again, but the recipe suggests several other sauces. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Grilled well-done hamburgers

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      My husband prefers his hamburgers well-done and I prefer mine pink. After a few sad hockey-puck episodes, I found this recipe which makes everyone happy. These are very forgiving hamburgers, tender even when well-done, and deliciously flavored with a bit of garlic and steak sauce. Original recipes specifies making 4 hamburgers from 1.5 lb ground beef - making 3 burgers from 1 lb ground beef works nicely, too. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Rich and tender oatmeal scones

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      Very nice scones - really good oat flavor and nicely moist. Best on the first day but still OK on the second. Not too sweet - if you like sweet, they benefit from being sprinkled with coarse sugar before baking or being eaten with jam or honey. The recipe suggests using the food processor to cut in the butter which is quick and easy works fine - the scones have come out flakier, though, when I've used my fingers to work in the butter. Freezing unbaked scones and baking them direct from the freezer has worked well. These tend to overcook on the bottoms during baking - using an insulated baking sheet (or stacking 2 half-sheet pans) and moving the oven rack a slot or two up from center has helped control that. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Cinnamon-raisin oatmeal scones

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      Very nice scones - really good oat flavor and nicely moist. Best on the first day but still OK on the second. Raisins/currants help them stay moist a bit longer than plain ones. Not too sweet - if you like sweet, they benefit from being sprinkled with coarse sugar before baking or being eaten with jam or honey. The recipe suggests using the food processor to cut in the butter which is quick and easy works fine - the scones have come out flakier, though, when I've used my fingers to work in the butter. Freezing unbaked scones and baking them direct from the freezer has worked well. I found that they tend to overcook on the bottoms during baking - using an insulated baking sheet (or stacking 2 half-sheet pans) and moving the oven rack a slot or two up from center has helped control that. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • German apple pancake

    • ashallen on January 02, 2020

      This is a delicious treat - the batter has a slightly eggy flavor that reminds me of the inside of a popover and contrasts really nicely with the apple. Tender texture. The cast iron pan did a nice job browning the pancake and creating a crisp exterior edge. [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Lemon-blueberry muffins

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      Good muffins with good flavor and a tender (but not overly tender) texture. Be careful not to underbake - they tend towards gumminess if underbaked - particularly when using frozen blueberries (which is most of the time for me). I've found that splitting the batter for the 12 muffins between two standard 12-muffin pans helps them bake better - more thorough and even. [Cross-post Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Old-fashioned blueberry muffins

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      Very good muffins - cake was tender without being mushy and had a fine, cake-like crumb. Blueberry-to-cake ratio was high! Would probably be fine with 1/4-1/3 cup fewer blueberries. [Cross-post Annual Edition/Magazine/Cook's Ill. Cookbook.]

  • Quick brioche loaf

    • ashallen on December 29, 2019

      This recipe makes a delicious loaf of bread with a great texture. The recipe is also very easy, especially for a brioche! [Cross-post for Annual Edition/Magazine/Cooks Ill. Cookbook].

  • Chewy sugar cookies

    • ashallen on January 01, 2020

      I resisted when my husband first asked me to make sugar cookies - I thought "How boring!" I was wrong. These are *not* boring cookies. We loooove these cookies! Simultaneously chewy and tender with a delightful buttery-sugar-vanilla flavor. Dough is easy to make and handle - it's not very sticky. I can skip baking them on parchment paper if I use insulated cookie sheets. I've tried freezing the dough for later baking and have found that doing so actually improves the cookies' texture a bit relative to fresh-made cookies for the first 12 hours or so, but after that they dry out and lose their delightful chewiness faster than fresh-made cookies. Dough does fine after sitting up to 48 hours in the refrigerator, though. Great rolled in granulated sugar (as specified in the recipe), brown sugar, and/or hazelnut praline powder. [Cross-post for Science of Good Cooking/Cook's Illustrated Cookbook.]

  • Garlicky shrimp pasta

    • kemgcodice on May 11, 2020

      The butter at the end really makes the sauce. We used larger shrimp and so will increase the garlic next time.

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Reviews about this book

  • Seattle Weekly

    The reason recipes from ATK work so well should be obvious from their name. They test recipes, test them some more,...On average, their recipes take six weeks and 65 tests to develop.

    Full review

Reviews about Recipes in this Book

  • Orange-almond biscotti

    • I Made That!

      First, I’m gonna make some biscotti. A biscotti flavored with orange zest and almonds.

      Full review
  • Mexican chocolate butter cookies

    • Lottie and Doof

      They are a rich chocolate-flavored butter cookie spiced with cinnamon and cayenne pepper. And because they are slice and bake, you can have freshly baked cookies whenever you like...

      Full review
  • Toasted coconut sablés

    • Lottie and Doof

      I fell in love even before I tried them. They seemed easy to make, could be made in advance and were full of toasted coconut.

      Full review
  • Glazed butter cookies

    • Lottie and Doof

      What is great about this recipe is that the addition of cream cheese into both the dough and the glaze provides a little bit of sourness to counter the sugar. The dough is so easy to make and roll out

      Full review
  • Roasted smashed potatoes

    • Kate Cooks the Books

      As promised, these potatoes deliver both the fluffy interior of a baked potato and the crispy exterior of a french fry (without the deep frying). They are absolutely heavenly...

      Full review
  • ISBN 10 1933615893
  • ISBN 13 9781933615899
  • Published Oct 01 2011
  • Format Hardcover
  • Page Count 928
  • Language English
  • Countries United States
  • Publisher Cook's Illustrated
  • Imprint Cook's Illustrated

Publishers Text

Cook's Illustrated Magazine has stood the test of time and distinguished itself among the pack by having a singular focus--developing recipes that work the first time and every time; it's as simple as that. For the first time since the magazine's inception, more than 2,000 of Cook's Illustrated's landmark recipes have been carefully compiled into a wide-ranging compendium that shows you how to make your favorite dishes better. A must-have collection for fans of Cook's Illustrated (and any discerning cook), The Cook's Illustrated Cookbook will keep you cooking for a lifetime--and guarantees impeccable results.

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