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185 of 189 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Cooking for 1 cookbook
I have several other "cooking for 1" cookbooks and have found many good recipes there. But this is the cookbook I've been waiting for. Ms. Jones has shown me how to take ingredients that cannot be purchased in small quantities and re-use these imaginatively to create entirely different meals.

For example, a pork tenderloin becomes a small roast, scallopine, a...
Published on October 4, 2009 by Cathy

versus
161 of 191 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Delightful read but recipes are common and old fashion.
I purchased this book last night at Barnes and Noble after reading about it in O Magazine. Judith Jones writing style is a delight and I enjoyed reading her narrative and folksy hints throught the book.

Unfortunately, I found the recipes in the book to be either common or old fashioned. Many of her main meals dishes call for beef or pork. A few called for...
Published on October 1, 2009 by C. Carter


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185 of 189 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Cooking for 1 cookbook, October 4, 2009
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This review is from: The Pleasures of Cooking for One (Hardcover)
I have several other "cooking for 1" cookbooks and have found many good recipes there. But this is the cookbook I've been waiting for. Ms. Jones has shown me how to take ingredients that cannot be purchased in small quantities and re-use these imaginatively to create entirely different meals.

For example, a pork tenderloin becomes a small roast, scallopine, a gratinate, hash, and stir fry. Her examples have encouraged me to improvise myself. I can envisage a BBQ pork sandwich, a pasty with leftover pork tenderloin, skirt steak and potatoes.

She encourages playing with the recipes to create a meal exactly to your own tastes. Several of her recipes also include vegetable substitution recommendations allowing for seasonal meals. Or, if you're like me and can't stand a particular vegetable then you can swap it for something more palatable.

This cookbook creates a solid foundation for enabling a cook's creativity. Highly recommended.
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96 of 98 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring, October 23, 2009
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D. G. C. (Irvine, CA United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Pleasures of Cooking for One (Hardcover)
This book is absolutely perfect for anyone who finds themselves cooking for one or two people. Not only are the recipes absolutely wonderful, the recipes for using left-overs are also great. Jones shows you how to shop, stock your pantry and freezer, and make wonderful meals for yourself that don't take forever yet taste like they did. I have over 50 cookbooks, and this is the one I find myself turning to again and again for my daily meals. This is real food - no processed shortcuts, no sacrifices. If you like to cook but think its too much trouble for just one person, get this book and you will have fun in the kitchen again.
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170 of 179 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rest assured, this is not just for singles., October 1, 2009
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This review is from: The Pleasures of Cooking for One (Hardcover)
Judith Jones is truly "having a moment," which is a wonderful thing. This new book is sort of an offshoot of her earlier memoir, which had a short but terrific recipe section. It is a sublime book--thoughtfully designed, detailed but not pedantic, practical, accessible, utterly personal, and completely charming. I'm not sure there is another book out there like this one, which takes us shopping and then into the kitchen to make the most of both common items and ingredients or dishes it might never have occurred to us to try. I can't wait to try most all of them. Of course, a little simple math will ratchet up a recipe for 1-2 to a recipe for 3-4 and so on--so this is absolutely a book for all cooks. The author does, however, sympathize with the plight of the single shopper and eater--supermarkets usually work to package more than we can possibly eat at one sitting. Short of a perpetual dinner party, what is the solution? Stretch the goodies over two or three completely different meals (trust me, this is NOT the same thing as just having leftovers). The title says it all--cooking for one should be every bit as pleasurable as cooking for others--maybe better, as the gaffes become your little secrets (and they are no less tasty). I would add that although the book is beautifully printed on high-quality stock and will make a truly fine gift (I do not work for the publisher--honest), it's no coffee table book. The size is perfect--it'll fit on the counter easily, although you might want one of those stand-up plastic stands to keep it open (and protect it, if that's important to you). All in all, one of the most thoughtful and user-friendly cookbooks I've ever encountered. I read it cover-to-cover, like a novel. Next I'm going shopping.
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47 of 49 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars like a long conversation with a friendly, experienced home cook, December 6, 2009
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This review is from: The Pleasures of Cooking for One (Hardcover)
I love this book. It is practical and concrete, and addresses my main problem in the kitchen: how to cook for one without either boring myself to tears eating the same leftovers for a week, or wasting food by letting it rot in the 'fridge while I get take-out because I crave variety.

The book reads like a relaxed conversation with an experienced home cook who is generously sharing her expertise. It's not just about cooking, it's about meal planning - how to use the leftovers from one meal to make something completely different and delicious the next night. Intermixed in there are some great traditional recipes that teach classic cooking techniques. Some of these I knew, but some I didn't.

I love that it's not just a bunch of fussy recipes where everything has to be measured exactly. She doesn't have you jamming fresh herbs in a tablespoon. She suggests a splash of this, a pinch of that. She encourages creativity and ingredient substitutions. She's not just giving you recipes to follow, she's teaching you how to think like she does - how to solve the problem of meal planning and cooking for one.

There's another subtle message in this book that's very important: the self-respect implicit in this fundamental form of self-care. This jumped out at me because I help people with emotional eating, and so much of emotional eating comes from lack of self-care, from feeling you don't deserve your own time and energy. She talks about this in the introduction, where she lists the reasons that people don't make nice meals for themselves: "Yes, I like to cook, they say, but I like to cook for OTHERS, to give my friends pleasure. Why would I want to go to all that trouble just for me? My answer is: If you like good food, why not honor yourself enough to make a pleasing meal and relish every mouthful?" I agree!

I highly recommend this book. Even those cooking for more than one will find it useful. What home cook doesn't need ideas for creative ways to use leftovers? This book teaches how to look at home cooking as a process, rather than a series of discrete meals. And it shows you how home cooking can be relaxing and creative rather than a chore.

Sheryl Canter
Author, Normal Eating for Normal Weight
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28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply Wonderful, February 20, 2010
This review is from: The Pleasures of Cooking for One (Hardcover)
I am almost never moved to write a review. It always seems like a lot of trouble. However, my mother heard about The Pleasures of Cooking for One on NPR and immediately thought of me. She bought this book for me as a present. I told her later that in my kitchen, you can always tell which cookbooks are loved, since the pages stick together, and The Pleasures of Cooking for One was sticking after about 3 weeks of use.

As a single woman, living alone, who cooks dinner for herself every night, I am always on the lookout for cooking-for-one-or-two type cookbooks. I am not into eating chili for 5 days straight; I like variety. Judith Jones does a wonderful job of showing you how to take larger cuts of meats and reinvent them throughout the week to have completely new meals. Another reviewer mentioned "leftovers" and I don't think this is really accurate. You use the leftovers to create something new and different. I don't think I have had a single recipe that has turned out poorly. I will grant you (after reading other reviews) that there are some recipes I will probably never make (veal kidneys come to mind). This is because A) I wouldn't know where to find a veal kidney B) I am kind of afraid of kidneys and C) I am not so happy politically with eating veal. That said, most of the recipes in this book are NOT veal kidneys. They are fish and chicken and pork and eggs and steak and veggies. Don't let a couple kidney recipes put you off.

I think the thing I like about this book is how much I have been encouraged to experiment and how many basic techniques I have become comfortable with. I am much more at ease just splashing a little wine into a pan to make a pan sauce instead of carefully measuring out 2 tablespoons of it. I am not a great cook. I am a practical, get-it-on-the-table type cook. During the week, if I can't have it on the table in 30 minutes, it probably won't get made. This book has fed me now, nearly every night, for two months. Always something different, generally easy to put together, and at the end of the week, I don't have mounds of leftovers rotting in the fridge because I didn't feel like eating them. This is a wonderful cookbook.
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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars lovely little real world book, September 27, 2010
By 
J. Janssen (San Diego, CA USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Pleasures of Cooking for One (Hardcover)
Before I write a review I usually try to look over any negative comments made by others. I do this when I feel very positive about an item but don't want to just subjectively heap praise without taking into account something someone else has a legitimate issue with; and so it is with this little gem. A few readers didn't like the recipe selection ..... one claimed the recipes were "common and old fashioned". Fair enough, people don't have to, nor should they, like the same food, but I think the critics are missing the point. The book is about cooking for oneself many nights of the week for possibly an extended period of time. This is a reality that anyone could find themselves in at one time or another. The essence of this book is how does one pare down and prepare interesting dishes that one has made for most of one's life without wasting an abundance of food or caving in to the frozen food section of the local supermarket. To that end I think it succeeds admirably. It's written with style, wit and panache by a lady who has edited some of the most skilled and well known food writers of the last 50 years. The menu items are just about perfect for my taste and decidedly not trendy or cutting edge; just simple little classics like Boeuf Bourguignon, a fish filet in parchment, broiled chicken, fennel-apple-walnut salad, leek and potato soup.... the list goes on and on. You can almost imagine Julia Child fixing herself exactly these meals on the rare nights when she wasn't being feted at one venue or another. This is a lovely little book, filled with "small plate" recipes and basic pantry/tool needs to have on hand. The writing is deft and enjoyable even if you don't know a sauce pan from a soup pot. If you find yourself single and like to cook, buy this book.
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31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Frugal Widow's Guide to Eating Well, December 27, 2009
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This review is from: The Pleasures of Cooking for One (Hardcover)
Before finding this book (initially at my local library), I wanted to write a cookbook for other widows about cooking for one in a healthy and frugal way. Judith Jones has written a far better book than I envisioned--not surprising in that she was Julia Child's editor at Knopf. I cooked from the book within eight hours of acquiring it, and purchased it from Amazon before the week was out. I've now made more than ten meals from the recipes in this book and they are all absolutely wonderful. Her genius lies in knowing exactly how much trouble a cook will go to when cooking for one.
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Enticing and Useful, February 22, 2010
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xine48 "xine48" (Barrington, Ilinois) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Pleasures of Cooking for One (Hardcover)
I found this cookbook to be delightful. I am a great cook, but being alone and working 11+ hrs a day I seldom cook on weekdays. It is usually a bowl of cereal or some cheese and crackers. This is a pathetic existence. Last week, I made a souffle and had a green salad, it was heaven. I never would have thought of doing it just for me and it only took 30 minutes. I read some of the more critical reviews and quite frankly don't understand them. Since when is classic cooking old fashioned. I don't eat tongue (yuck) and don't eat veal unless I can find it free range which is difficult. But I use a cook book as inspiration. I can always redo a recipe to my preferences. How incredibly boring to have to follow a recipe exactly, Ms. Jones encourages you to deviate as do I. As for leftovers, I love them and like new ideas. I have no problem giving this book 5 stars.
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161 of 191 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Delightful read but recipes are common and old fashion., October 1, 2009
This review is from: The Pleasures of Cooking for One (Hardcover)
I purchased this book last night at Barnes and Noble after reading about it in O Magazine. Judith Jones writing style is a delight and I enjoyed reading her narrative and folksy hints throught the book.

Unfortunately, I found the recipes in the book to be either common or old fashioned. Many of her main meals dishes call for beef or pork. A few called for liver or sweet meats. I'm not a big fan of red-meat so many of these recipes did not appeal to me. Seafood recipes called for mussels, lobster and fish varieties that are not easily available to me. Her recipes for Indian or Asian style dishes didn't have the same intense flavors as recipes found in Indian/Asian cook books.

I found that the best recipes and hints in the book were featured in the O Magazine article. I'm torn as to whether I'm going to keep this cookbook as I enjoyed the read but was not impressed with the recipes.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love this Cookbook, December 24, 2009
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This review is from: The Pleasures of Cooking for One (Hardcover)
I have already tried a few recipies from her book and I am very pleased. It is training me to cut down on what I buy and how I cook. I'm not throwing out as much food. I would highly recommend this book to anyone living alone.
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The Pleasures of Cooking for One
The Pleasures of Cooking for One by Judith Jones (Hardcover - September 29, 2009)
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