America's Test Kitchen Cookbook

America's Test Kitchen Cookbook

by Cook's Illustrated


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America's Test Kitchen Cookbook by Cook's Illustrated

The America’s Test Kitchen Cookbook is the companion volume to the new hit public television series based on the recipes, techniques, and taste tests created by Cook’s Illustrated magazine. Filmed in the actual Cook’s test kitchen, both the television series and the cookbook set out to find the best methods of preparing your favorite home-cooked foods from the simplest tomato sauce to the fanciest French tart.

More than just a collection of recipes, this beautifully photographed book takes you inside the entire 2002 season of the America’s Test Kitchen series, with 26 chapters each dedicated to a different episode of the show. You will meet the cast – through photographs, bios, and quotes from each member – and will follow the America’s Test Kitchen process, as Christopher Kimball and the rest of the cast identify common cooking problems and then test dozens of variations to come up with the best methods for preparing recipes. Many of the most popular segments of the show, including the Science Desk, Equipment Corner, and tasting Lab, have been brought to life with photos.

With more than 200 recipes and dozens of beautiful, behind-the-scenes photographs, The America’s Test Kitchen Cookbook is sure to become an indispensable part of any cook’s library.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780936184548
Publisher: America's Test Kitchen
Publication date: 11/28/2001
Pages: 368
Product dimensions: 8.74(w) x 10.02(h) x 1.20(d)


Makes about 1 quart, serving 4 to 6

The longer the zest and juice mixture is allowed to steep, the more developed the citrus flavors in the finished margaritas. We recommend steeping for the full 24 hours, although the margaritas will still be great if the mixture is steeped for only the minimum four hours. If you're in a rush and want to serve margaritas immediately, omit the zest and skip the steeping process altogether.

4 teaspoons grated zest plus 1/2 cup juice from 2 or 3 medium limes
4 teaspoons grated zest plus 1/2 cup juice from 2 or 3 medium lemons
1/4 cup superfine sugar
Pinch salt
2 cups crushed ice
1 cup 100 percent agave tequila, preferably reposado
1 cup Triple Sec

  1. Combine lime zest and juice, lemon zest and juice, sugar, and salt in large liquid measuring cup; cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until flavors meld, 4 to 24 hours.
  2. Divide 1 cup crushed ice between 4 or 6 margarita or double old-fashioned glasses. Strain juice mixture into 1-quart pitcher or cocktail shaker; stir or shake until thoroughly combined and chilled, 20 to 60 seconds. Strain into ice-filled glasses; serve immediately.

Fresh Pineapple Margaritas:
Peel and core 1 small ripe pineapple (about 3-1/2 pounds); cut half of pineapple into rough 2-inch chunks (reserve remaining half for another use). Puree in workbowl of food processor with steel blade until smooth and foamy, about 1 minute. Follow recipe for Fresh Margaritas, omitting zest and steeping process, reducing lemon and lime juice to 1/4 cup each, and adding 1/2 cup pureed pineapple to juice mixture.
Fresh Raspberry Margaritas:
To make strawberry margaritas, substitute an equal amount of hulled strawberries for the raspberries.
Follow recipe for Fresh Margaritas, omitting zest and steeping process and pureeing 1 cup fresh raspberries, lime and lemon juices, sugar, and salt in workbowl of food processor fitted with steel blade until smooth. Strain mixture into pitcher or cocktail shaker; continue with recipe, educing Triple Sec to 1/2 cup and adding 1/2 cup Chambord (or desired raspberry liqueur) to juice and tequila mixture in pitcher.

Serves 2 to 3

If you need to double this recipe, cook two batches of home fries separately. While making the second batch, keep the first batch hot and crisp by spreading the fries on a baking sheet placed in a 300-degree oven. The paprika adds a warm, deep color, but it can be omitted. An alternative is to toss in 1 tablespoon minced parsley just before serving the potatoes.

2-1/2 tablespoons corn or peanut oil
1 medium onion, chopped small
1 pound (2 medium) Yukon Gold or all-purpose potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1-1/4 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 teaspoon paprika
Ground black pepper

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in 12-inch heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. Add onion and sauté, stirring frequently, until browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer onion to small bowl and set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, place diced potatoes in large saucepan, cover with 1/2 inch water, add 1 teaspoon salt, and place over high heat. As soon as water begins to boil, about 6 minutes, drain potatoes thoroughly in colander.
  3. Heat butter and remaining 1-1/2 tablespoons oil in now-empty skillet over medium-high heat until butter foams. Add potatoes and shake skillet to evenly distribute potatoes in single layer; make sure that one side of each piece is touching surface of skillet. Cook without stirring until one side of potatoes is golden brown on bottom, about 4 to 5 minutes, then carefully turn potatoes with wooden or heatproof plastic spatula. Spread potatoes in single layer in skillet again and repeat process until potatoes are tender and browned on most sides, turning three or four times, 10 to 15 minutes longer. Add onions, paprika, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, and pepper to taste; stir to blend and serve immediately.


Despite this pie's name, we found that tasters could not tell the difference between pies made with regular supermarket limes (called Persian limes) and true Key limes. Since Persian limes are easier to find and juice, we recommend them.

Lime Filling
4 teaspoons grated zest plus 1/2 cup strained juice from 3 or 4 limes
4 large egg yolks
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk

Graham Cracker Crust
11 full-size graham crackers, processed to fine crumbs (1-1/4 cups)
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

1-1/2 cups whipped cream, made with 1 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar but without vanilla and whipped to stiff peaks
1/2 lime, sliced paper thin and dipped in sugar (optional)

  1. For the Filling: Whisk zest and yolks in medium bowl until tinted light green, about 2 minutes. Beat in milk, then juice; set aside at room temperature to thicken.
  2. For the Crust: Adjust oven rack to center position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Mix crumbs and sugar in medium bowl. Add butter; stir with fork until well blended. Scrape mixture into 9-inch pie pan. Press crumbs evenly onto bottom and up sides of pie plate. Once crumbs are in place, line pan flush with large square of plastic wrap, and use spoon to smooth crumbs into curves and sides of pan. Refrigerate lined pie plate 20 minutes to firm crumbs. Bake until lightly browned and fragrant, about 15 minutes. Transfer pan to wire rack; cool to room temperature, about 20 minutes.
  3. Pour lime filling into crust, bake until center is set yet wiggly when jiggled, 15 to 17 minutes. Return pie to wire rack; cool to room temperature. Refrigerate until well chilled, at least 3 hours. (Can be covered with lightly oiled or oil-sprayed plastic wrap laid directly on filling and refrigerated up to 1 day.)
  4. Decoratively pipe whipped cream over filling or spread evenly with rubber spatula. Garnish with optional sugared lime slices and serve.
Copyright © 2001 by the editors of Cook's Illustrated.

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America's Test Kitchen Cookbook 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I bought the book a while ago because I loved the show, but never had enough time to try any of the recipes. Now with some time on my hands I decided to put the seasons fruit to good use. After trying an old family recipe for Blueberry muffins,I found it too dry so I went looking for another and picked up this book. The Blueberry Muffin recipe wasn't exactly what I was looking for, but I found it to be better than what I wanted. I'm a believer of America's Test Kitchen and plan on collecting the books.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is great. The TV show that it comes from is informative and interesting. While many recipes are the same as those in The Best Recipe, there is additional information and more pictures. Sometimes the recipes are just a little different. For those who want to try Cook's Illustrated's cookbooks, this would be a good one to start with.
Guest More than 1 year ago
America's Test Kitchen is a well written, informative cookbook. It provides anyone who wants to cook with good recipes and explanations as to why the recipe includes certain ingredients and steps. I recommend this cookbook to other cooks.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Cooks Illustrated continues to publish books that simply restate what they stated in The Best Recipe. If you want virtualy everything they have do offer buy that. This book is thrown together from a TV show and offers very little new or interesting. A mediocre effort.