- Paperback: 256 pages
- Publisher: Clarkson Potter; First Edition edition (March 29, 2005)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1400082536
- ISBN-13: 978-1400082537
- Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 0.8 x 9.1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 159 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #381,665 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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30-Minute Get Real Meals Paperback – March 29, 2005
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From Publishers Weekly
Part of Ray's appeal to legions of Food TV fans is her loose, nonnitpicky approach to cooking at home. Every meal she presents can be prepared in 30 minutes or less, and she consistently emphasizes simplicity and nonfussiness. So it's no surprise that Ray's contribution to the supposedly waning low-carb cookbook genre does not strictly adhere to the diet. Ray adores carbohydrates—"I cannot and will not eat without them"—and she believes consuming them "in moderation" is a healthy option. This selection of recipes, then, does include pasta dishes, but Ray wisely makes them heavy on the meat and vegetables and low on pasta (a half pound for every four entrées). Her devoted viewers will delight at the prospect of Bucatini with Sausage, Peppers, and Onions; Creamy Polenta and Bolognese Sauce; and Eggplant and Wild Mushroom Pasta with Ricotta Salata. Other chapters are just as appealing, offering ideas for main course salads, as well as meat and fish dishes, burgers, soups, snacks and desserts. In keeping with her low-maintenance style, Ray is lax with her instructions, calling for "a couple slices of smoked salmon" in one recipe, and "2 tablespoons vegetable oil (eyeball it)" in another. Ray's standard chatty demeanor, which comes through loud and clear, coupled with interesting, varied recipes, make this book a winner. (Apr.)
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About the Author
Rachael Ray appears daily on the Food Network as host of 30-Minute Meals, $40 a Day, and Inside Dish. She is the author of eight bestselling cookbooks, most recently Cooking Rocks! and Cooking ‘Round the Clock. Rachael lives in the Adirondacks.
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To the 1st, I say this is classic RR. Sure, the burgers are bun-less, but still delish ;) If you feel put off by the amount of fat used in the recipes and believe it is unhealthy, I would suggest reading one of Gary Taubes' excellent books (Good Calories, Bad Calories,Why We Get Fat: And What to Do About It (Vintage)) in order to understand how fat, even saturated fat, is not as bad for you as you may think, especially once you reduce your daily carb intake. All in all, RR's book will introduce you to the low-carb lifestyle without pushing you out of your comfort zone.
To the 2nd, I say this is as good as it gets. Although RR mentions in the introduction that this is her take on no-carb, the book is not that hardcore, and in fact rather flexible - there's even a section of pasta recipes, which you could ignore, save for very special occasions, or even adapt to suit you (replace the pasta with a low-carb alternative, such as zucchini strips). If this is your first RR cookbook, you may be daunted by the rather long ingredient lists - don't be. Each recipe is packed with flavor in the form of herbs & spices, and most of them are chock-full of non-starchy veggies, and can thus be served without any side dishes. Moreover, I find that even if I skip a secondary ingredient here, replace another there, the result is still as good. Also, RR tends to use a standard set of staple ingredients, which makes things rather easier IMHO.
All in all, I think RR's book trumps all other low-carb cookbooks in my library. In addition to what I mentioned above, another reason for this is that none of her recipes uses hard-to-find ingredients that one may come across in other low-carb cookbooks. One drawback is that she uses a lot of cheese (there's even a chapter on dips, with several fondue variations); although I love cheese (and it's low-carb), I've been advised to cut back on it since it produces a high insulin response. I guess the best thing is for each person to try it out and see how their body responds.
Finally, although the Kindle version that I bought has links to each chapter at the beginning as well as an index with links at the end, I would have liked to see a list at the beginning of each chapter with links to every one of the recipes in that section. It's a feature that unfortunately I've only seen in a handful of Kindle cookbooks, but it really makes a reader's life easier.
I've only tried one recipe - Bucatini with Sausage, Peppers, and Onions. For those of you who are complaining that these recipes are no good, you obviously have not tried this one. It's super healthy but delicious.
If you're having problems finding ingredients, go online and find substitutes. For goodness sakes. Get creative.
The main complaint I have is that I haven't tried more of the recipes because I have no idea what I am making since there are no pictures. Thus, I don't know if something looks like something I would enjoy. Perhaps referencing a website with pictures would help??
Anyway, what people are saying about recipes taking more than 30 minutes is true, unless you have a food processor.
A couple of sugestions for Rachel. A "shopping list" of her most used ingredients or unusual ingredients would be helpful. I don't keep some things in my cupboard such as Smoked Chili powder or shallots in my fridge. Also more suggetions for substitutions for the more unusual ingredients (dried mushrooms etc) would help many out too.
I have found myself using more fresh herbs and plan on growing some in my garden this year and using things such as fresh garlic and onion rather than relying on dried or prebottled versions which has made my cooking tasteier. I also have been able to adapt most recipes so that I, a low carber and my husband, a heart disease sufferer can enjoy them at the same time as my 16 year old son. I add rice or pasta to the menu for them and still can enjoy the meal myself