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Melissa's Everyday Cooking with Organic Produce: A Guide to Easy-to-Make Dishes with Fresh Organic Fruits and Vegetables Hardcover – April 26, 2010

4.8 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. In this invaluable guide to fresh produce, food columnist Thomas (Melissa's Great Book of Produce) proceeds alphabetically through 56 popular fruits and vegetables, offering tips on varieties, buying year-round, and proper prep and storage. The real bounty, though, is the recipes-more than 400-that give readers copious suggestions for those persimmons, leeks, or eggplants that look so tempting at the market, and so perplexing on the kitchen counter. While obvious applications such as salads are included, Thomas's recipes are anything but phoned-in: cooks with too many cherries can use them in Cherry, Chocolate and Toasted Almond Ice Cream or as a relish for a grilled pork tenderloin; fresh ginger can be used to liven up Chicken Saté with Peanut Sauce and Cucumber Raita; and even the spinach-averse will reconsider when facing Linguine with Baby Spinach and Blue Cheese, complemented by toasted pine nuts, fresh basil, and prosciutto. Thomas even ventures beyond mains and sides to include a tasty Kiwi Martini and White Sangria, as well as a Nectarine Barbecue Sauce, basic carrot vinaigrette, and easy-to-accomplish pickled shallots.

Review

[STARRED REVIEW] In this invaluable guide to fresh produce, food columnist Thomas (Melissa's Great Book of Produce) proceeds alphabetically through 56 popular fruits and vegetables, offering tips on varieties, buying year-round, and proper prep and storage. The real bounty, though, is the recipes-more than 400-that give readers copious suggestions for those persimmons, leeks, or eggplants that look so tempting at the market, and so perplexing on the kitchen counter. While obvious applications such as salads are included, Thomas's recipes are anything but phoned-in: cooks with too many cherries can use them in Cherry, Chocolate and Toasted Almond Ice Cream or as a relish for a grilled pork tenderloin; fresh ginger can be used to liven up Chicken Saté with Peanut Sauce and Cucumber Raita; and even the spinach-averse will reconsider when facing Linguine with Baby Spinach and Blue Cheese, complemented by toasted pine nuts, fresh basil, and prosciutto. Thomas even ventures beyond mains and sides to include a tasty Kiwi Martini and White Sangria, as well as a Nectarine Barbecue Sauce, basic carrot vinaigrette, and easy-to-accomplish pickled shallots. (Apr.) (Publishers Weekly, April 19, 2010)
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; 1 edition (April 9, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470371056
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470371053
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 1 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #679,859 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
[...] cook book review :

Melissa's Everyday Cooking with Organic Produce is not just a cookbook. It's also a field guide for organic produce. You'll find information on how to select the ripest, freshest produce, how to save money by buying seasonal produce, tips for preparation, nutritional information, and much more!

The recipes are simple enough that anyone should be able to make more delicious meals from now on by using Melissa's Everyday Cooking with Organic Produce. You'll find tips for making meatless dishes, and there are "Cooks Notes" for most recipes, which provide additional information to insure that the recipe will turn out as anticipated in everyone's kitchen.

If you're looking for a great guide for selecting, buying, and preparing organic (or even just fresh) produce, this is a wonderful choice. The illustrations are great and you are definitely going to learn a lot from this one.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
What a delight to open this book and learn more about organic fruits and vegetables. I saw this book listed on the NPR site as one of the top 10 summer cookbooks. Since following Cathy Thomas' articles in the Orange County Register I knew I would be in for a treat! She has a way of capturing her readers with a story -- and always interesting recipes.

Little did I know when I ordered it how much I would learn about each item listed. The produce is covered in an alphabetic format making it ever so easy to find information about a specific item. Then, each item starts with the same format: buying and storing, prep and use followed by item availability, serving suggestions and recipes that includes NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION.

Just browsing through I found some helpful hints, like how to store cilantro. I always find it discouraging when the cilantro spoils in a couple of days. Now I know how to store it so it will last 7 - 10 days. And did you know that using citrus zest from non-organic produce includes the wax. I never thought about that...now I do.

Another great feature is the listing in the front that includes seasonal availability of produce. Since I plan to give this as a gift for some non-California based family and friends I like that the produce listed is readily available nationwide.

Get this book for yourself, sit down with an organic seasonal fruit and enjoy the journey. You'll want to share the book -- and the treats you'll create from it.
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Format: Hardcover
Finally a book that shows me how to cooking a full organic meal using accessible and seasonal items that I can find at my local supermarket!

Greet recipes, beautiful photos and a lot of information I was not aware about regarding the care taken to grow Organic Produce.

I been reading other organic books, but this is the best yet!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As a mother of 2 I find nothing more important than feeding my kids healthy, organic meals! The only problem is that it can be expensive and time consuming! This book is my solution for those problems. I'm blessed with girls that will eat ANY vegetable I put in front of them, but lets be honest, roasted or steamed brocolli 3 times a week can get boring. I spend a fortune every week in fresh produce (artichokes, sweet potatoes, brocolli, asparagus, etc) but 1/2 of it would goes to waste, usually because who the heck has the time after a long days work to sit and figure out what to do w/the darn artichokes you purchased. Its a heck of a lot easier to buy frozen veggies/open a can and serve that. Well, this book has saved me from that!!! Lets say you have asparagus in the fridge or some left over squash you want to use. Just turn to that page and there are 4-5 recipes waiting for you! From the helpful hints in the beginning of each section (easy preperations, what to serve each selection with with) to HEALTHY, QUICK MEALS that you family will love, this book is a savior!!!!!!!!! I would be lost without it, especially in the summer after many trips to the farmers market! So, hurry, dont think about it any more, just buy it! You will NOT regret it!

P.S. My only complaint is that there are not more recipes. I would love to see 10-15 recipes per item, but who wants to buy a 500 page cookbook. I'm hoping for a second book coming out soon!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a truly wonderful book.Not only do you get information on
picking out the best produce, but also how to cook it.
This book is on my counter every day and I refer to it all the time.
Very, Very informative and I have been married and cooking for my
family for 51 years. I wish I had had this book 51 years ago.
Cathy Thomas writes in such a way you can't wait to try one of her
receipes.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I chose this book because I know the author and enjoy her creative, entertaining approach to cooking/eating healthier meals. She convinces you to take the plunge with simple methods and perfect pictures.
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By alice on January 2, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I like the book. It has lots of imformation and great recipies. Only downside for me was lots of ingredients in some of the recipes. I'm a more simple cook. I have made some of the recipes and they are very delicious.
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