2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Wonderful Collection of Recipes,
This review is from: Williams-Sonoma Family Meals: Creating Traditions in the Kitchen (Hardcover)
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This is a great cookbook with straight-forward, easy to follow recipes. The book contains extremely traditional recipes (mac and cheese, mashed potatoes, french toast), as well as some more unique offerings (roasted plums with cream, butternut and bacon pasta). Most of the recipes contain less than ten ingredients, and almost all the ingredients were ones that are easy to obtain, if not always ones that I keep in my house. There are beautiful photos on almost every page, with the ingredients, final products, and intermediary steps depicted. The only downside of the photos is that they aren't captioned, so it's occasionally unclear what's being shown.
The cookbook is divided into ten sections: breads & pastries, dairy, eggs, fruit, vegetables & herbs, seafood, chicken, meat, pasta & grains & legumes, and sugar & spice & chocolate. Each section begins with an introduction to the main ingredients necessary for that section. The breads & pastries section describes flour and rising agents, with information on different types, what the ingredients do, and how to store them. The seafood section describes how to know if seafood is fresh, how different types differ, as well information on cuts of fish. After the introduction, each section proceeds with ten to fifteen recipes.
Overall, I'd say this is an excellent general cookbook. I don't think it does much to get families into the kitchen together or to create family traditions, both of which seem to be the purpose of this particular cookbook. Aside from a few photos of cute kids helping in the kitchen and some brief anecdotes about the author cooking with her family, the book doesn't really directly address the issue of families cooking together. But if you're just looking for a really nice, attractive, informative cookbook, this is for you.