Substituting Ingredients, 4E: The A to Z Kitchen Reference

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Overview

Everyone has been in this predicament: you're at home, with no time (or desire) for a trip to the store-but the recipe you're using calls for an ingredient you don't happen to have on hand. With this book, you'll have a solution: substitute. In Substituting Ingredients, author Becky Sue Epstein has collected more than 1,000 easy-to-find, ...

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Overview

Everyone has been in this predicament: you're at home, with no time (or desire) for a trip to the store-but the recipe you're using calls for an ingredient you don't happen to have on hand. With this book, you'll have a solution: substitute. In Substituting Ingredients, author Becky Sue Epstein has collected more than 1,000 easy-to-find, healthy, and cheap substitutions.

You'll find:

  • Substitutions for difficult to find items and common items you may not have on hand
  • Green, nontoxic household cleaner solutions
  • Less expensive ingredient options
  • The best ways to measure fruits and vegetables for recipes
  • Simple recipes for condiments, sauces, marinades, and spice mixtures
  • Strategies to remedy too much or too little of an ingredient

"With this paperback on the shelf there's no need for mad, midrecipe dashes to the grocery store."
-Bon Appétit

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Editorial Reviews

Nibbles of Tidbits
We've only had it a few days and already love it. It's clear and concise, easy to use, and so far it includes everything we've ever wanted to find a substitution for. Wish we had this book years ago
NY Daily News

This astonishingly comprehensive 2010 edition covers all manner of kitchen swaps, which will see you through kitchen crises all year long.

Some of the listings are for recipes, including one of my favorites, zaatar. Others are for straight substitutions, such as using anchovy and soy sauce for nam pla. Still others are not quite direct swaps, but as if the understudy is stepping in for the star: perhaps different, but the show-and dinner-will go on.

Savor the Thyme
In summary, I love the concept of this book as it remind people to have fun in the kitchen and to use what you have and not panic. Also, when you substitute an ingredient, you often end up with new recipes and new flavor profiles

I think this book would be an excellent resource to have in your kitchen at home and would be a great (and affordable) gift.

Wine Fairy
Becky Sue Epstein is a master of detail. She is respectful of tradition and environmentally sensitive remedies for the kitchen and home. Substituting Ingredients: The A to Z Kitchen Reference is a convenient tool and a good read, especially if you eat, drink, cook, or clean!
Lola's Diner
I find myself referring to it quite often and I'm sure you will to, [and] this is a kitchen must have if you do any amount of cooking or baking at home.
Ladies Sewing Circle
This book is a wealth of knowledge. Perfect for the thrifty or dare I say lazy (just me ladies, I can say that about me) cook. I was intrigued and saw that there were tons of great substitutions for all kinds of things. Saffron! Have you ever hmmmed and hawwed over a fourteen dollar bottle of saffron? Well, tumeric or marigold petals for color will do just fine in a pinch.
The Frugal Hostess
FruHo loves this, because it gets at one of the central philosophies of her life - the idea that you should use what you have. Having at one point been the kind of cook who would run out two or three times in the process of preparing a recipe, TFH really digs that you can just flip through and find a substitution. Epstein also lists when you cam omit an ingredient, like when a recipe calls for less than one tablespoon of orange zest or less than half a cup of fiddlehead ferns. Also, the book is a petite paperback, so it fits handily in your spice cabinet or drawer of utensils.
Southern Lace
This book is handy and its small size makes it perfect to stash in the kitchen for quick use.
— Lacy Matharu
Robyn's Online World
This little book has tons of substitutions and information to use in everyday cooking. Not only that but it is in an easy-to-read and easy-to-use format. I have already found a home for this right in my spice cabinet (it has much more than just spices, but that spot just works for me). This book will help whenever you are out of one thing and need to substitute something else or even if you just don't want to spend the money on an expensive ingredient on a new recipe. The book also gives some common item weight equivalents which I think are awesome!

— Robyn Wright

Cooking For Two
This little book is quite thorough and passed my spot tests for the accuracy of the advice. I'll have it near my phone/computer when I man the ChefsLine help line in the future.
— Kevin
Love of Oats
I know most of you are trying to be more green in terms of cleaning product usage and she [Becky Sue] provides a number of quick and easy mixtures for cleaning bathrooms, cutting boards, drain cleaners & openers, pesticides for ants, and an oven cleaner... Not only will it help the environment, but it will also save me a ton of money on cleaning products!
— Lindsay Edelman
Itzy's Kitchen
Its basically the substituting bible.
— Erica Sorkin
Eating Bender
It truly is a great guide and also includes things you might not expect such as green household cleaners and budget-friendly ingredient guides.
Mommy's Memorandum
In this book Ms. Epstein takes substituting to a whole new level. It's more than a book to save you from the panic of missing an item in a recipe you're making. My kiddos would love her as a mom because instead of saying, "You don't like it? You get what you get and don't throw a fit!" (That's my Mom Trademark statement), Ms. Epstein instead says, "No problem, Substitute!" AND when my seventeen year old declares he can only eat the best of the best, which I may not be able to afford, this book allows me options...Substitute!
Fab and Delicious Food
Substituting Ingredients: The A to Z Kitchen Reference is a great help in the kitchen. It can save you time and money by letting you use things you have on hand, rather than going out and buying an ingredient that you may never even use again.
From French Fries to Flax Seeds
Overall ...I think this book would make a welcome addition to anyone's kitchen, because we've all had recipes that we don't have all the ingredients for, and have to decide whether to spend the money on the ingredients or not make the recipe.
Andrea's Recipes
It's the kind of book a novice or intermediate cook would want on hand for quick reference and it would make a nice gift for anyone learning to cook.
— Andrea Meyer
Cookerati
this is a good go to easy reference book. Substituting Ingredients would make a great gift for the first time cook
— Diana
Always Orders Dessert
this handy little pocket-sized paperback by Becky Sue Epstein is a great reference book to keep in your kitchen, whether your developing recipes for your blog or just cooking for the family.
— Alejandra Ramos
Taste As You Go
[Substituting Ingredients] will help you find ingredients that are more affordable than the ones listed in a recipe, in case you happen to be on a budget.
— Michelle Judd
Making Things Stretch
Do these substitutions work? Yes, I know they do because I've used them before. Epstein has added a few new ones, but I have no doubt that they will work because the old ones did and her new ones agree with what I've tried on my own.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781402239243
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 6/1/2010
  • Edition number: 4
  • Pages: 208
  • Sales rank: 140,660
  • Product dimensions: 4.90 (w) x 6.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Becky Sue Epstein is an experienced editor, broadcaster and consultant in the fields of wine, spirits, food and travel.In addition to writing books -- most recently The American Lighthouse Cookbook -- she is also an editor at Intermezzo Magazine, The Tasting Panel and www.PalatePress.com. She travels frequently and has lived on the East and West Coasts of the US as well as in the UK, the Middle East and Europe.
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Read an Excerpt

From the Introduction

Do any of these scenarios sound like something that has happened to you?

• Rushing into the kitchen, grabbing pots and pans and the ingredients for a favorite, last-minute dinner, you're dismayed to discover you're lacking a key ingredient.
• Perusing a magazine, you settle on an enticingly simple recipe, but then you notice it has a couple ingredients you're sure can't be found locally.
• Finally ready to try that friend's fabulous recipe you printed out some time ago, you suddenly realize you might not have all the ingredients-in fact, you're not exactly sure what one of them is...

What to do?

After this happened to me a few times, I started to accumulate substitutions for a variety of ingredients. The list grew until it became a collection. And then a project. For many months, my family and friends sampled a lot of strange foods. Finally, it turned into my first book, Substituting Ingredients.

I-and about a hundred thousand other people-used this collection of substitutions for more than fifteen years, through multiple printings and successive, updated editions.

Attitudes toward food, cooking, take-out, and eating out have continued to evolve. We're all much more adventuresome now, so it's time for a new edition.

This book is simple to consult and much more comprehensive than previous editions. It contains all the spices, herbs, exotic fruits, and vegetables needed for modern cooking, so you can actually prepare the exotic recipes you see online, in print, or on television every week.

It's great if you've just forgotten to buy a critical component for a recipe, something as basic as lemon juice or eggs. Perhaps you don't have time to search for a rare item, like fresh Alaskan King crabmeat, or you don't want to gamble on an expensive ingredient you might only use once, such as saffron.

Substituting Ingredients contains over 1,000 substitutions and easy directions to make dozens of common condiments. There are tables for converting, measuring, and determining temperature equivalents, as well as instructions for simple formulas for household cleaners.

Whether you're making an easy weekday meal or an elaborate dinner for a celebration, whether you have time constraints, financial restrictions, or food allergies, once you have this book in your kitchen, you'll use it again and again.

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Table of Contents

Introduction ix

How to Use This Book xi

Substituting Ingredients A to Z 1

Herbs and Spices at a Glance 162

Measurement Equivalents 168

Too Much, Too Little, Too Late: Remedies for Common Kitchen Disasters 176

Household Formulas 180

About the Author 192

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 11 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 11 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 23, 2010

    An Invaluable Resource!

    One of my favorite cookbooks is a little book that I found in a used bookstore in Durango, Colorado, 14 years ago. It was titled Substituting Ingredients: An A to Z Kitchen Reference by Becky Sue Epstein and Hilary Dole Klein. I've used it a lot over the years. Particularly, the substitutions for unsweetened chocolate (1 sq = 3 Tbsp. cocoa plus 1 Tbsp butter) and for milk and cream. When I need to know how much lemon juice to substitute for a medium lemon, I open up this book (since the bottle doesn't say anymore!). Over the years, I've added other substitutions that I've found in magazines to my old copy of this book. The cover is falling off and needs a new layer of packing tape. It has been well used and loved.

    I ran across this edition a few weeks ago and discovered that it was published this year. I just received a copy of it today! So, I pulled my old copy out and sat for an hour with them comparing them. The biggest question I pondered as a book buyer is: is it worth it to buy a new updated edition or should I save money and buy the older edition for $5 less? In the case of this book, my recommendation is "yes."

    There were some minor complaints I had with the old edition. Often spices were listed as substitutions, but not with an amount. There also wasn't much explanation on substituting different types of ingredients. But, I still loved the little book because I had never seen anything else like it.

    My complaints with old edition have been fixed! There is a lot more information, but don't be deceived by the number of pages. It may have 191 pages, but it is a small book. The font, though, is easy to read--it isn't too small. It is a black and white cookbook with the font bolded and italicized in ways that make it very easy to see the information you want quickly--which is important in a pinch! Many herb substitutions now have amount equivalencies which will be very helpful. The old information that I found worked is still there, but a few have been deleted. Single Acting Baking Powder was deleted--because it essentially isn't sold anymore. The baking powder you buy in the store is double-acting. But, products that aren't used as much as they were in the past like self-rising flour are still included. There is also now a quick reference list at the back that you could put a post-it tab on and turn to quickly when you need to pull it out.

    Do these substitutions work? Yes, I know they do because I've used them before. Epstein has added a few new ones, but I have no doubt that they will work because the old ones did and her new ones agree with what I've tried on my own.

    Can this book save you money? Yes. One of the first substitutions that saved me money (besides not having to buy any more squares of expensive baking chocolate) was for tomato paste. So many recipes call for 1 Tbsp of tomato paste. What do you do with the rest of the can that you just opened? There is a substitution in this cookbook that I've used for years, but I won't ruin it by giving away all the books secrets. It is nice not to waste a whole can of paste anymore!

    Please note that I received a complimentary copy of this book for review from Sourcebooks.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 13, 2013

    Try it, you'll like it.

    Think it would be a big help for beginning cooks, but also answers some questions for us oldies.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2013

    Haley

    Oh no you didnt!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 1, 2013

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2012

    Link

    Goes to res.12

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2012

    Maddie

    Disaears

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2012

    Danika to riker

    I knew i scared the crap you outta meh child

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 1, 2013

    Rikwr

    Mornin

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2013

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 23, 2012

    Your choice

    Nothing on sample

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 29, 2012

    Best Cooking Guide Ever!

    No matter what you're cooking, you can fid a substitute for any ingredient in your recipe. This cooking guide has helpped me out a number of times, when I didn't have a certain ingredient called for in the recipe. This cooking guide is rated #1 on my "Must HaveCooking Books" that anyone must have in their cookbook collection.

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