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Posted March 26, 2011
This cookbook is a collection of easy and affordable recipes with an emphasis on main dish meals with some salads, side dishes, and desserts included. Each recipe comes with a "cent" icon to indicate approximate cost per serving with most, according to the book, costing less than $3 per serving. There are also icons to indicate whether the dish can be made ahead, those suitable for crock pot cooking, and those that take as little as 15 "hands-on" minutes to prepare.
My concern at first was that this might be another "quick and easy" collection of recipes that relied on canned condensed cream soups but thankfully, it isn't one of those. While it isn't exactly "health food" fare, the recipes can be easily adapted with low-fat, low-sodium versions of some ingredients and can have more fresh vegetables included instead of canned. In reading through the cookbook, it seemed that all the recipes were easy to prepare and used familiar ingredients one could find at a local grocery store. The only recipe I tried so far was the sloppy joes and my family gave it a thumbs-up. I look forward to trying other recipes such as the Mac 'n' Jack baked macaroni and cheese that uses five different cheeses, including pepper jack, and the Southeast Asian Chicken Salad that uses a store-bought rotisserie chicken. I also like that many of the recipes can be doubled with the extras frozen for another meal.
The only negatives for me with this cookbook is that there are no photos and the book does not lay open easily. (There should be a law that all cookbooks be spiral or ring bound so they lay flat while in use, but I will save that debate for another time.) However, the recipes themselves are just what the title promises: quick, cheap comfort food that will appeal to family members of all ages.
I received a copy of this book for review from the publisher but the opinion of it is my own and was not solicited nor was a positive review required. If I didn't like the book I would say so.
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