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Rachael Ray's Big Orange Book: Her Biggest Ever Collection of All-New 30-Minute Meals Plus Kosher Meals, Meals for One, Veggie Dinners, Holiday Favorites, and Much More! Paperback – November 4, 2008

4.3 out of 5 stars 122 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Book Description
In the 10 years since she served up her first 30-minute meal--and thousands of delectable dinners later--Rachael Ray has learned just about all there is to know about getting a great tasting meal on the table in a hurry, whether it is one of her patented 30-minute miracles or something just a tad more involved for a special gathering. Rachael’s Big Orange Book is the ultimate resource for busy cooks. Need kitchen inspiration? It’s all here and it’s all new--and bigger than ever!

Just one for dinner tonight? Forget the cold cereal. Rach has a chapter of recipes that make dining on your own a thoroughly civilized occasion, with great meals that won’t leave you with a fridge full of leftovers. Vegetarians on the guest list? No problem! Choose from dozens of meat-free meals that are every bit as satisfying as your tried-and-true standards and savory enough to please the carnivores in your crowd. Observing a Kosher menu? Check out the selection of menus just for Kosher cooks, all ready in less than, you guessed it, 30 minutes. There's even a mother lode of burger recipes for fans of the bun—so many options you could make a different burger every day for a full month!

In addition to her latest 30-minute creations, Rachael has put together an array of menus and recipes for easy entertaining, from quick snacks to serve for game night and easy hors d’oeuvres, to soup-to-nuts menus for her favorite holidays and special occasions. Whip up a pasta buffet for a special mom on Mother’s Day, please a crowd with a super-simple Oscar party menu, and give thanks for not one but four fantastic menus that keep holiday stress to a minimum by getting you out of the kitchen in record time.

Best of all, these recipes have all the huge flavors you’ve come to expect from Rachael, with something to please every taste--and every food budget. You’ll even find the treasured family recipes that Rachael and her husband, John, have enjoyed for years; see if they don’t become beloved family traditions in your home as well. Whether this is your first introduction to cooking the 30-minute way or you are a long-time convert, you’ll find irresistible new recipes here to make the most of every second you spend in the kitchen.

Rachael Ray's Smoky Tomato Soup with Mini Grilled Cheese and Bacon Sammies
Sammie nights are always fun; this one brings out the little kid in me. --Rachael Ray

Smoky Tomato Soup with Mini Grilled Cheese and Bacon Sammies
(Serves 4)

1 tablespoon EVOO (extra-virgin olive oil)
4 slices smoked bacon, chopped
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 onion, chopped
3 celery stalks, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
Salt and pepper
4 cups chicken stock
1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram or oregano
1 (28-ounce) can crushed
fire-roasted tomatoes, partially drained (if you only have diced or whole fire-roasted tomatoes, don't sweat it; it all gets ground up later)
1 teaspoon sugar
2 teaspoons hot smoked paprika, 2/3 palmful
1/4 cup heavy cream
Butter, for the skillet
16 slices of party-size rye, pumpernickel, or whole wheat bread, such as Pepperidge Farm
8 square slices of extra-sharp cheddar cheese, 1/4 inch thick
3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives
1-1/2 cups (a single-serving bag) white cheddar popcorn

Heat the EVOO in a medium soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the chopped bacon and cook until crisp, 2 to 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the crispy bacon to paper towels to drain and reserve for the mini grilled cheese and bacon sammies.

To the same pot, add the garlic, onions, celery, and carrots and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 5 to 6 minutes, until the vegetables are tender. Scoop the veggies into a food processor, add about 1/2 cup of the chicken stock and the marjoram, and puree until smooth. If the tomatoes you are using are whole or diced, add them to the processor with the veggies and puree.

Return the pureed veggies to the pot, place back over medium-high heat, and add the remaining chicken stock, the crushed or pureed fire-roasted tomatoes, the sugar, and the smoked paprika. Bring the soup up to a bubble, stir in the cream, and keep warm over low heat while you make the sammies.

Heat some butter in a large skillet over medium heat. While the butter is melting, lay 8 of the bread slices on a cutting board. Top each one with a slice of cheese, a sprinkle of the reserved bacon, some chives, and another slice of bread. Transfer 4 of the mini sammies to the hot skillet and cook until the sandwich is toasted on both sides and the cheese is melted. Repeat with the remaining 4 sammies.

Serve the smoky tomato soup with some popcorn floating on top and the grilled mini grilled cheese and bacon sammies alongside.

Rachael Ray is a bestselling author and the host of Food Network's popular 30-Minute Meals and Tasty Travels as well as her daytime syndicated show, Rachael Ray. She is also the founder of Yum-o!, a charitable foundation dedicated to helping parents and children develop a healthy relationship with food. This is her fourteenth cookbook.

From Publishers Weekly

Ray offers up her biggest collection of recipes to date. Dedicating whole chapters to kosher and vegetarian meals, meals for one, burgers, holiday menus, starters and appetizers, her trademark 30-minute meals and more, Ray covers the gamut in this tome named after her favorite color. Recipes are designed for cooks of all levels, and meals with more than one course are marked so that cooks can maximize time and effort. Dishes range from the familiar, such as a weeknight pot roast, to the more ambitious lemon and garlic chicken with grilled prosciutto-wrapped asparagus served with a pesto three-bean salad. Ray includes something for every appetite, from the hearty Buffalo chicken chili mac and sausage mushroom ragu with rigatoni to the more refined tomato and shrimp salad with horseradish dressing. She also includes family hand-me-down recipes and dishes that require longer than 30 minutes. Lavish photographs accompany each dish, making even the simplest meal mouthwatering. With its attractive package and moderate price tag, Ray's multitude of fans will flock to this extensive collection, making it a great holiday gift purchase. (Nov.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 360 pages
  • Publisher: Clarkson Potter; First Edition edition (November 4, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307383199
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307383198
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 0.9 x 9.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (122 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #224,121 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Rachael Ray is a New York Times bestselling author of more than twenty cookbooks. She is the host of the Food Network's 30 Minute Meals and Rachael Ray's Kids Cook-Off, as well as the Cooking Channel's and the Food Network's Week in a Day. She is also the star of the syndicated talk show Rachael Ray; founder and editorial director of her own lifestyle magazine, Every Day with Rachael Ray; and founder of the Yum-o! organization.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Why the title? Ray herself says (Page 8): "It's orange simply because orange is my favorite color." Simple enough! This has the normal complement of 30 minute meals. However, there are some features to this volume that attracted me to order it: vegetarian meals, holiday menus, some recipes longer than 30 minutes (breaking out of one's mold is a plus to me), Kosher meals. The vegetarian is especially important for me now, since my family is asking me to develop some more vegetarian meals (more on this below). The recipes here are doable by amateur/wannabe chefs. From an earlier cookbook of hers, I found that I could make some tasty meals without a lot of heart palpitations.

This cookbook is well over 300 pages long, so I don't aim to give a comprehensive detailed review (would take too many words). What I'd like to do here is focus on a few recipes and use these as examples of what this cookbook provides. The contents:

30-minute meals
Entree burgers
Vegetarian meals
Kosher meals
Meals for one
A little more than 30 minutes--but worth it
From my family to yours
Starters and snacks
Holiday menus

30-minute meals: "That's Shallota Flavor Spaghetti" (ugh for the bad pun!). A meatless pasta dish (consistent with my family's wishes). Extra virgin olive oil (what Ray calls EVOO), butter, garlic, shallots, salt and pepper, spaghetti (she calls for wheat, but that would not be necessary), parsley, and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. Very simple to make. I have not yet tried this, but looking at the recipe, this is a "can't miss" recipe.

"Roasted Pork Tenderloins with Escalloped Apples." My family wants me to lay off pork tenderloin. But this recipe might change their minds!
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Format: Paperback
I like that this cookbook is actually one of hers that you can read. The print isn't orange on a blue background. And the pages in this cookbook are heavy quality instead of that recycled, matte stuff.

These recipes seem a little better than some of her past productions in that these recipes actually have ingredients that you can buy. The Golden Ice Cream Cakes were very cute and tasty and easily made with store bought ingredients. She put these in the Oscar Night Party section but these would be very cute birthday cakes.

I also liked the red, white and blue slaw and thought it very tasty with the bleu cheese crumbles added. I would have not thought of that on my own. The recipe for the German Cheese and Beer Fondue I had made before from the food network website but am glad it's in this cookbook. It's a very good cheese fondue.

The Thanksgiving meal suggestion was Turkey Sweet Potato Shepherd's Pie. It's something I will definitely make but after Thanksgiving using the leftovers. It calls for a banana so we'll see what twist that gives this dish. The butternut squash riscotto I had made from one of her other cookbooks so I see it's included here as well.

This is truly a big book. Over 350 pages...worth the money per recipe unlike her little books she put out a couple of Christmas' ago. The pictures are good quality though there are only a few.

This would make a great Christmas gift combined with one of her garbage bowls and Sutoku knife. What a cute under the tree gift. What I like about having the vegetarian section is that I don't think it's meant for vegetarians to purchase but for the meat eater who wants to eat less meat on occasion.
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Format: Paperback
If you watch Ray's show or have other cookbooks by the author, and you looked through Rachael Ray's Big Orange Book without glancing at the cover, you would immediately know it was hers. To begin with, it's loaded with her unique language--EVOO (extra virgin olive oil,) "sammies" (sandwiches,) and more.

The largest section of the book is comprised of Ray's famous 30 minute meals. This section is broken down to soups & sammies, pasta, chicken, beef, ham & pork and fish.

Ever since my husband got back from a business trip in California and told me about a delicious meal of fish tacos, I've been experimenting. So, when I saw "My-oh-mahi tacos," I had to try them. They were delicious! The best part was that the recipe has you first wrap the filling with a corn tortilla, then a flour one. I think the corn tortillas taste and texture are great, but I hate how they always break, spilling taco contents everywhere. With the flour tortilla wrapped around it, everyone plays nice and stays inside.

There is a vegetarian chapter. Now, I assume if you are a vegetarian, you would not buy this book for the one chapter. However, be warned if you make Winter Greens Pasta for a vegetarian eater--the recipe calls for ANCHOVIES! Anchovies are FISH--therefore, this is not strictly a vegetarian dish.

Other chapters include kosher, family recipes, entree burgers, starters and snacks, holiday menus and dishes that take more than 30 minutes to prepare.

I also made Broken Florentine Lasagna Bake, because I love swiss char and am always looking for new ways to prepare it. This was very good and a very healthy meal.


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