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Customer Review

23 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Can I give a Wow!, November 23, 2009
This review is from: America's Most Wanted Recipes: Delicious Recipes from Your Family's Favorite Restaurants (America's Most Wanted Recipes Series) (Paperback)
Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy! I saw this cookbook, flipped through it, said Wow, and put it in the shopping cart! "America's Most Wanted Recipes: Delicious Recipes from Your Family's Favorite Restaurants" is one of those Must-Have cookbooks!

Except for the cover, there is not a single photo of a single recipe in this 267-page cookbook. Not one, yet one of the most important determiners of buying a cookbook is plenty of photos showing me how the prepared dish should look. In this case, however, photos are not needed. We already know what the dish looks like--it is from one of our favorite restaurants!

An example: MACORONI GRILL, one of my favorite restaurants, has eight recipes in the line-up, one of which is Sesame Shrimp, an Asian-inspired dish, as well as their recipe for Focaccia.

IHOP's Swedish Pancakes, one of only two dishes I always order, is included. Wow! (I don't order anything else because this is what I want every time!) Or Baked Potato Soup by HARD ROCK CAFE.

Basic information:
Over 200 recipes from 57 restaurants

A website which connects you with Ron Douglas's recipe website.
How Douglas obtained the recipes

A way to save money is to cook at home
Eating at home is often healthier than eating in restaurants through substitutions.

Three pages of cooking tips, including "For a juicier hamburger, add a little cold water to the beef before grilling" and "A roast with a bone in will cook faster than a boneless roast. The bone carries the heat to the inside more quickly."

Other pre-cooking topics include: Cooking terms, guidelines for buying fresh vegetables and fruits, description of flavor and use of various spices and herbs, and shelf life for herbs.

The index is most beneficial as well and includes measurements, recipes listed by category (they are arranged alphabetically by restaurant in the book proper), trademarks, and restaurant web sites (a favorite to be sure).

For a complete list of all restaurants and their recipes, refer to the first reviewer's review.

Here are a couple of teasers: CHILI'S Salsa, the SOUP NAZI's Crab Bisque and Cream of Sweet Potato Soup and one more, the famous Indian Mulligatawny Soup (you know, the Soup Nazi, as seen on Jerry Seinfeld), BOSTON MARKET's Meat Loaf, and one more: Meatbals by CARRABBA's ITALIAN GRILL.

No, just one more: My personal all-time favorite recipe in the world: OUTBACK STEAKHOUSE's Marinated Steak. Wow!

See, I told you this is a Wow cookbook!
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Showing 1-10 of 18 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Nov 24, 2009 9:19:42 AM PST
Gio says:
You'd expect me to be skeptical, wouldn't you, Judy? Don't take it personally. I'm a devout food snob.

When I was in my twenties, living in a 'community' of war protesters, we all decided to have a "Bad Kharma" potluck, each of us cooking up exactly the food we'd most dread if and when we were 'restored' to our extended families. I cooked 'tamale pie'. I have the feeling that this cookbook was assembled by someone else who attended that famous potluck.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 24, 2009 11:07:19 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 24, 2009 11:07:48 AM PST
Maybe... but I do appreciate your reading and responding. I always like to hear from you, Gio.

Posted on Nov 25, 2009 7:08:13 PM PST
H. Schneider says:
what's a soup Nazi? (reminds me of a standard fav joke of the expat 'community' in Indonesia when I lived there: Nasi Goreng became Nazi Goering)
one of the rules about eating out that I believe in but keep breaking for practical reasons is: never eat in a restaurant that uses photos on the menu.

Posted on Nov 25, 2009 8:28:53 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 25, 2009 8:30:20 PM PST
Other than the possibility of those little mini-cabbages, there is little I will not eat, so this book would probably work for me. While I may skip the IHOP dish, I certainly find nothing wrong with Outback's steaks. We enjoy eating there often. We cannot always do it, but we in general try to avoid any of the chain places, but Outback is an exception. (I loath the Olive Garden..it is such a chick place...grunt, grunt).

Nice review...interesting book! I will keep my eye out for this one.

Sigh...now if I could just find the recipe for the cheeseburgers that were made at The Hill Top Café, (near Cassville, Mo., about four miles from Roaring River and right on the road that headed the back way to Mineral Springs and Jenkins; not far from which I eventually shot my first Quail a few years later) right after the War (that is WWII), and if you ordered them to go they were wrapped in wax paper, then I would die happy. I can still remember even the smell of the wrapping paper! They are the first restraint food I can remember eating as a little boy and were a major big time treat. They were considered expensive to the extreme at the time, being sold for .25 cents each, whereas a normal burger in town sold for .15 each. I would also be interested in finding the recipe for the Banana Pie served at Mandrell's Café in Exeter, Mo at about the same time.

don

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 25, 2009 9:12:51 PM PST
Don, do you realize you could write a book after compiling your own list of people's favorite recipes, not from well-known restaurants, but from those popular locales so favored by the local folk! How 'bout it?

Posted on Nov 26, 2009 8:27:44 AM PST
Karen Joan says:
YUMMY!!! Your review makes me hungry. Happy Thanksgiving, Judy!

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2009 3:44:29 PM PST
Happy Thanksgiving back to you, Karen!! I thought this book has enough good recipes to be well worth the price!

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 27, 2009 9:28:06 PM PST
You know that has been discussed here. I have two writing projects going right now and if and when I ever complete them...well maybe...it would be fun.
don

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 27, 2009 10:59:14 PM PST
Writing? You have writing projects? May I ask about what? Two? One more than one? I am impressed, Don!

H, what's wrong with photos? IHOP uses them and that's some good food!

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 28, 2009 7:27:34 PM PST
H. Schneider says:
Hey J, re the photos: most of the time places who use photos for their menus serve trash; I know that there are exceptions and that in some places there are good reasons for the photos, mainly in multicultural clientele situations, eg a Chinese restaurant catering to Westerners etc.
But I like to preserve my snobbish dislike for the style...
H.
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