Customer Reviews: Cooking Club: Great Ideas and Delicious Recipes for Fabulous Get-Togethers
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon January 26, 2011
'Cooking Club' gives you ideas and instructions on how to set up a cooking club. Several theme parties are included, each having 8 recipes and a cocktail. The basic themes and recipes included are: breakfast, New Orleans food, India, spring, Greece, grilling, Italy, Hawaii, Thai, autumn, Latin America, comfort food.
The ladies introduce how they started their cooking club and give guidelines

This is more of a cooking club guide although there are recipes and ideas for mainly international theme parties. There are tips throughout, i.e. how to hold a successful party. The book itself is small, but the recipes are easy to read with the exception that they continue from page to page, so that many times you have to turn the page to finish a recipe. The book itself can also be somewhat hard to hold down so that you can work on the food without holding the book itself. They are not simple comfort food, but not all that difficult to prepare.
This would be a book for those who do want the instructions to form a cooking club, or some ideas for internationally themed dinners.
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on June 2, 2009
This cookbook is a must have for all who love to cook and/or entertain. I enjoyed the history of the food and how the authors tied the food to the cultures they originated from. The recipes I have tried have been delicious. The recipes are easy to follow and if an ingredient is hard to find an alternative is offered.
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VINE VOICEon July 8, 2009
I was so excited to get this cookbook. Based on the front cover and the short exerpt it leads you to believe it's a wine club cookbook with a few recipes because of all the raised glasses...but the front cover is totally misleading, it needs a completely new revamped cover for this cookbook.

This cookbook is primarily about getting together and cooking and sharing with others who have like cooking interests. The cover only shows two women clearly and the rest are completely hidden by wine glasses and arms. The predominent center is just a grouping of wine glasses and background trees. Whoever Rosebud Eustace is should be fired. This cover will keep people from buying this book because they'll think it's just a wine club cookbook when it fact that's completely opposite. This is a great cookbook so don't let the cover mislead you, it really has nothing to do with wine.

There are 12 parties planned, one for each month. The parties are: Breakfast and Egg-citing Conversation, Delicious Foods of New Orleans, India one spice at a time, Spring has Sprung, Greece is the word, the Grill of Victory, Sunday Italian Dinner, Hawaiian Luau, One Night in Bangkok, Autumn Leaves, Holy Mole, Fuzzy Slippers and Comfort Foods.

The premise is you get 8 like minded cooks and either everyone cooks together at the hosts' house or you divide up the recipes and bring each dish potluck style to the host house. There is usually one cocktail recipe for each menu.
There are lots of good ideas for setting up your own cooking club, by-laws and other necessary information so nobody gets stuck with a big chunk of the tab and the meals are fairly distributed among each person.

There are also stories about other cooking clubs around the world. It was the most interesting part of the book. The pictures in the book are few and far between and they have nothing to do with the chapters or the food. The one picture for the Sunday Italian dinner chapter is a group of people drinking wine and eating asparagus. The recipes are actually for Limoncello Coolers and there's not a recipe for anything close to asparagus, in fact the recipes are an antipasto platter, calamari, and risotto. Hummmm....

The Spring Garden Party has recipes for a yummy chilled asparagus soup, spring vegetable bagna cauda and potato-leek gratins baked in cream. The month for Greece has recipes for feta stuffed figs, avgolemono soup, rack of lamb, and imam bayildi. There are lots of tasty and elegant recipes in this cookbook.

Another good cookbook if you're into cooking clubs is Do It for Less! Parties: Tricks of the Trade from Professional Caterers' Kitchens it has 9 different party themes and is not limited to 8 people, it can be adjusted upwards of 75 with no problem. All recipes can be divided up for all cooked together in a group kitchen setting. Some cooking clubs even rent local VFW's, or the school to have their monthly dinner clubs.

Another one I like is The Cooking Club Cookbook: Six Friends Show You How to Bake, Broil, and Bond. It has more straight forward recipes that would appeal to all food types and not just gourmet.

If you're into neighborhood gatherings where you do want casual, finger foods then try Block Parties & Poker Nights: Recipes and Ideas for Getting and Staying Connected with Your Neighbors. It's not really geared for cooking clubs but it is a nice potluck type cookbook.

I also like The South Beach Diet Parties and Holidays Cookbook: Healthy Recipes for Entertaining Family and Friends because it has party recipes for tons of different types of parties from Tuscan Night, Super Bowl bashes, Valentine's, Cinco de Mayo and on and on. The recipes are only geared for 4 so your group would have to double, triple, etc to make it work.

Overall the Cooking Club cookbook is OK. Once they get the front cover and other pictures revamped on the reprint it will flow much better. I love the short stories about cooking clubs around the world and found the information for setting up your own cooking club to be invaluable so from that standpoint it's a must.
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