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Publishers WeeklyStarred Review.
Author Crumpacker (The Sex Life of Food, Old-Time Brand Name Desserts, Old-Time Brand Name Cookbook) provides a running start for those new to the kitchen in this down-to-earth guide to cooking. Beginning with the properly sliced onion, Crumpacker explains the hows of cooking as well as the whys: readers will learn why roasting a chicken upside-down is preferable (it keeps the white meat moist), how you can salvage overcooked scrambled eggs (a little butter or sour cream), and the best way to crush tomatoes for homemade marinara sauce (by hand). These and other tips won't bowl over veteran cooks, but Crumpacker's simple advice will rapidly build cookery confidence in those used to dining on canned or pre-made products. Crumpacker manages to hit most of the high points, including vinaigrettes and sides, pastas, classic mains like pork chops and roast chicken, desserts and even simple infusions like Eau-de-Vie and Limoncello. Though bolstered with recipes, Crumpacker's crisp prose makes this volume a winner-the next best thing to having a chef at your side as you prepare to tackle a new dish.
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