The Lazy Gourmet: Magnificent Meals Made Easy


The Lazy Gourmet is for anyone who dreams of dazzling guests with fabulous home-cooked fare, but fears that such a feat would require Thomas Keller’s talent, Martha Stewart’s ingenuity, Gandhi’s patience, and Charles Manson’s free time. The goal of The Lazy Gourmet is to conquer the misguided belief that preparing an elegant meal requires spending hours—or days—in the kitchen. With the help of an army of volunteer testers—regular people with no culinary training—Robin Donovan and Juliana Gallin developed this ...
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The Lazy Gourmet: Magnificent Meals Made Easy

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The Lazy Gourmet is for anyone who dreams of dazzling guests with fabulous home-cooked fare, but fears that such a feat would require Thomas Keller’s talent, Martha Stewart’s ingenuity, Gandhi’s patience, and Charles Manson’s free time. The goal of The Lazy Gourmet is to conquer the misguided belief that preparing an elegant meal requires spending hours—or days—in the kitchen. With the help of an army of volunteer testers—regular people with no culinary training—Robin Donovan and Juliana Gallin developed this collection of recipes that can be prepared using readily available ingredients and common kitchen appliances, and without any previous cooking experience or training. With our recipes, anyone can prepare delicious and sophisticated, yet surprisingly simple dishes that will impress fussy in-laws, placate implacable bosses, and seduce sexy strangers through the proven method of knocking their socks off at the dinner table.

As the lazy gourmets themselves like to say, “Cooking a great meal can be just as easy as cooking a crappy meal!” So relax! Stop fretting over elaborate recipes and cumbersome techniques and start cooking the Lazy Gourmet way.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"The Lazy Gourmet: Magnificent Meals Made Easy is exactly what its title suggests—a resource packed with recipes to satisfy a connoisseur's palate, yet which require a minimum of preparation time."
—Midwest Book Review

"I'd prefer to call this the Relaxed Gourmet... the brainchild of Robin Donovan & Juliana Gallin... it's filled with the most marvelous and truly inspired dishes. Just because you don't have hours and hours to spend in the kitchen, does not mean you can't prepare spectacular meals. Your guests will really rave about the 'coolness' factor of whatever you serve them. The recipes are so simple to prepare, yet give the impression that you've been slaving away... BOTTOM LINE: This is one book you'll turn to often in 2012, making brilliant dishes in no time."
—Cookbooks and Apps blog

"The recipe section made me as happy as my favorite cooking shows do... Don’t lump this in with other books on food and cooking. It’s creative, funny, and a quick read. Think about putting it near the register as a potential impulse purchase."
—Anna Jedrziewski, New Age Retailer, June 2011

"As a "frugal party girl," and busy working mother, I love good recipes I can throw together without a lot of fuss and complication. The Lazy Gourmet is making my life much easier, but the great thing is, the resulting delicious dishes don't LOOK EASY!
—Lara Starr, author of The Frugal Foodie

"The Lazy Gourmet is one of those rare cookbooks that also feeds the mind. I love this book for the savvy secrets and food facts that show Juliana and Robin are fabulously passionate about great food. The real "joy of cooking," is sharing meaningful meals with family and friends and The Lazy Gourmet shines a light on doing just that."
—Margie Lapanja, author of Romancing the Stove: Goddess in the Kitchen, Food Men Love and Food That Rocks!

"Each member of my family is very social; we have people dropping over frequently. I often need to pull together a quick meal to share with our dear friends so The Lazy Gourmet is now my go-to resource for marvelous recipes that "impress for less."
—Billee Sharp, author of Fix It, Make It, Grow It, Bake It

"I LOVE to entertain and I am always searching for great recipes. Juliana Gallin and Robin Donovan have created delicious recipes and easy ideas for parties I will be using for many years. The Lazy Gourmet brings the fun back into the kitchen and puts it right on the table."
–Nina Lesowitz, author of The Party Girl Cookbook and Living Life as a Thank You

"Whether you're a nervous newbie or a skilled cook with utmost confidence, you're sure to appreciate this smart recipe collection that allows you to put an impressive spread on the table even when you're time-pressed—which for most of us is 24-7. With The Lazy Gourmet, cooking turns relaxed and satisfying. Imagine that.'
—Carolyn Jung, James Beard Award-winning food writer and creator of FoodGal

“This book is filled with food that’s simple, seasonal, fresh, and doable. Here you’ll find recipes that are perfect for family dinner on Tuesday night but fun, hip, and cool enough to serve your friends when you’re entertaining on Saturday evening. And it’s easy enough for even the novice to do.”
—Joanne Weir, James Beard Award-winner, popular television cooking show host, and author of Tapas to Meze

"I have always considered myself a lazy chef. For me, that means choosing seasonal, local ingredients and relying on simple preparations to allow those ingredients to shine. In The Lazy Gourmet, Robin and Juliana have taken this approach to a whole new level, transforming 'lazy' into 'quintessentially elegant.'"
—John Scharffenberger, Founder, Scharffen Berger Chocolate Maker

"Whether you're new to the kitchen or an experienced home chef, you'll love The Lazy Gourmet. With its good-humored approach, engaging style, useful culinary information, and delightfully easy and delicious recipes, it takes the stress out of cooking. If you want to prepare sophisticated, exceptional meals for your friends and family but are busy, kitchen-phobic, or just plain lazy, this is the cookbook for you."
—Sally Bernstein, Editor-In-Chief, Sally's Place

"That cooking is fun is one of the best-kept secrets in some circles, but not here. With infectious enthusiasm, The Lazy Gourmet will inspire both the neophyte and the well-seasoned home cook toward making meals that show how easy it is to love cooking from scratch."
—Cheryl Koehler, Editor/Publisher, Edible East Bay

Kirkus Reviews

Recipes for the adventurous home cook looking to take their meal from ordinary to exquisite.

Donovan (Campfire Cuisine: Gourmet Recipes for the Great Outdoors, 2006) and Gallin have a mantra: "Cooking a great meal can be just as easy as cooking a crappy meal!" While their cookbook won't transform that quick weeknight mac and cheese into a multi-course masterpiece, it will allow wannabe chefs to whip up mouthwatering dishes guaranteed to impress guests. The book is divided into two parts: "The Basics" lists must-have ingredients to keep on-hand and provides simple cooking tips, from softening butter to storing appliances, but "The Recipes" is where the fun begins. Snacks, small plates, soups and desserts are all on offer, ranging from Savory Blue Cheese Shortbread to Pistachio Ice Cream with Strawberries and Balsamic Syrup. The recipes may sound exotic, but each has been tested by volunteers with no culinary training. The language is straightforward and free of confusing cooking terms, and the most complicated piece of equipment required is a food processor. Recipes are often followed by detailed instructions on how to "Make it ahead," suggestions for side dishes to "Serve it with," or alternate ingredients for cooks looking to "Change it up." Some recipes, however, may be too lackadaisical for even the laziest of gourmets—e.g., a recipe for Basil Leaf and Goat Cheese Wraps that instructs readers to set out the ingredients then direct "diners to take a basil leaf and wrap it around some cheese."

A collection of easy-to-follow recipes that demystifies gourmet cooking.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781573446532
  • Publisher: Cleis Press
  • Publication date: 5/1/2011
  • Pages: 216
  • Sales rank: 1,107,268
  • Product dimensions: 6.90 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Table of Contents

Foreword Joanne Weir 7

Introduction 11

Part I The Basics 17

Chapter 1 Party in Your Pantry 19

Chapter 2 Tips for Rookie Cooks and Lazy Gourmets 52

Chapter 3 The Lazy Gourmet Toolkit 67

Part II The Recipes 73

Chapter 4 Snacks and Starters 75

Chapter 5 Salads 126

Chapter 6 Soups 149

Chapter 7 Sandwiches 172

Chapter 8 Small Plates and Main Dishes 190

Chapter 9 Sides 266

Chapter 10 Condiments, Sauces, and Extras 296

Chapter 11 Desserts 385

Acknowledgments 373

Measurement Conversion Charts 377

Index 383

About the Authors 395

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 3, 2011

    Delicious, easy recipes!

    I'll readily admit to being a lazy cook, but until now I didn't think of myself as a gourmet cook. I love the concept of lazy + gourmet though, and am thoroughly embracing it! The recipes in this books are FANtastic! They are very well-written, and I had no trouble following them. Each recipe has a "Make it ahead" section that says how much you can do, how far in advance, which is really helpful for planning. There are also suggestions for substitutions if you can't find or don't have a particular ingredient, and for ways to "Change it up" to, well, change it up! There are great suggestions for combining the recipes together for meals. For example, I made the Five-Spice Roast Pork, and as suggested, served it with Caramelized Fennel, Coconut Rice, and green beans sautéed with garlic. It was a terrific combination! I made the Asparagus with Lemon Vinaigrette as a side dish another night. It was wonderful, and the Lemon Vinaigrette was so good that I made it again to serve over some roasted shrimp and broccoli. From starters (yes, the Orange-Spiced Pecans really are more addictive than crack!) to side dishes (Crispy Baked Rosemary Potatoes, mmmmm!) to mains (the Gemelli with Roasted Cauliflower, Tomatoes, and Breadcrumbs is a keeper: the preparation is easy, the flavors are complex and rich, and result is a wonderful, vegetarian pasta that tastes as good as it looks!) to desserts (Orange Crème Fraîche Cake with Bittersweet Chocolate Glaze? Yes please!), I'm already considering this my go-to cookbook. The recipes I've tried so far have been really impressive, and I am looking forward to trying the rest! Highly recommended!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 14, 2012

    Lazy and gourmet my kind of cooking!

    My sis asked for this for Christmas. I bought one for me as well. They have some really great party ideas. The one that sold me my first read was stuffing green olives with feta. My kitchen is in the middle of a redo so I haven't done much of it yet. For someone who has been cooking for years, they still taught me some new tricks.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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