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Anyone Can Cook (Better Homes & Gardens Cooking) Ring-bound – October 2, 2007

4.7 out of 5 stars 43 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This all-purpose, accessible book provides great information in a visual, easy-to-find-in-an-instant format. More than 550 recipes—appetizers through desserts—are illustrated by 1,000 helpful photographs that effectively demonstrate techniques in addition to showing finished dishes. The opening section covers everything from where to find ingredients in a grocery store to the method for cutting up a pineapple or to chop nuts. Recipes are all labeled with a skill level range from absolute basic to more inventive (but still simple); there's a straightforward Guacamole a couple of pages away from Avocado-Feta Salsa; and basic French Toast right before Stuffed Croissant French Toast. The editors anticipate questions and either answer them on the page with the recipe (with the Herbed Leek Gratin, for example, is an explanation of What's a gratin?) or direct them to the location in the book where a technique or ingredient is described, via an Ask Mom box on the bottom of each page. (A box on the Herbed Leek Gratin page points to answers for What is a leek? How do I prepare leeks? How do I snip fresh herbs?) It's a great resource for beginner cooks. (Oct.)
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Product Details

  • Series: Better Homes & Gardens Cooking (Book 20)
  • Ring-bound: 506 pages
  • Publisher: Better Homes and Gardens; 1 edition (October 2, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0696232936
  • ISBN-13: 978-0696232930
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 2.5 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #121,691 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Ring-bound
This book is exactly what i have been looking for. I have purchased many cookbooks that make a promise to be easy and help me achieve edible food, but all have failed. This book is amazing! The tips at the bottom of every recipe are exactly what every new cook needs in a cookbook. How do I de-seed a tomato? Well the tips at the bottom tell me exactly what page to refer to so that I can complete the recipe with ease. There are easy recipies, and then some tougher recipies I can grow into.

The front section that offers advice on kitchen utensils, bakeware, cookware, and other kitchen tips is the most helpful to a new cook. There are plenty of pictures and practical advice to make cooking no so scary and overwhelming. There is even a breakdown on popular drinks and cocktails for when entertaining.

This book has recipies and tips that will benefit someone just moving out on their own or leaving for college as well as new couples or anyone who wants to entertain. I have to say this is by far the best cookbook in my collection, and I can see myself using it for a lifetime.
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Format: Ring-bound Verified Purchase
I just bought Anyone Can Cook for a recently-retired family member who's as unfamiliar around the kitchen as I am in an auto shop. I wanted something with a solid foundation and ample descriptions of basics such as choosing, storing, and prepping fruits and veggies (a step which is often overlooked in "regular" cookbooks), a primer on kitchen tools (knives, utensils, appliances), and step-by-step guidance in addition to easy-to-prepare recipes. The first hundred pages or so are devoted to the differences between produce and tool tips (red, yellow or white onions? Cremini, enoki, button, morel, or portabello mushrooms? Springform or cake pan?). Also, recipes are ranked according to skill level, with 1 being easiest and 3 being easy.

Enter Better Homes and Gardens: Anyone Can Cook. Like millions of other housewives, I grew up using the Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook, and have several reincarnations, so I had no reservations about investing in Anyone Can Cook. Its organization is similar to the traditional BHG cookbook; i.e., appetizers, soups, salads, meats (including detailed charts of the various cuts), poultry, veggies, desserts, breakfast and more. However, many of the recipes are simplified and rely heavily on store-bought shortcuts such as refrigerated dough and precooked meats (in that respect, it reminded me of Betty Crocker Quick and Easy Cookbook: 30 minutes or less to dinner (Betty Crocker Books), so if you're put off by the idea of using so many processed foods in your recipes, you might want to invest in the original BHG cookbook.
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Format: Ring-bound
As someone who has been cooking on their own for years, I was concerned this book would be strictly for a true novice. I am happy to report that I was mistaken. Although I would contend that this book would make an excellent high school graduation gift for a young person first leaving home, or a great bridal shower gift for the new, inexperienced bride (or groom, I suppose), this book contains recipes with a depth enjoyed by even those who would considered themselves well seasoned, in manning the stove.

I found the tips, whether they be on cooking utensils, or how to prepare ingredients, interesting enough for a veteren, yet easy enough for even the most inexperienced chef-in-training. The recipes ranged in difficulty from very easy to moderately difficult without being boring in the least. The recipes herein, despite their ease, would make a proud presentation on any dinner table. From breakfast to after dinner cocktails, this book covers it all in an easy to digest format. Truly, Anyone Can Cook!
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Format: Ring-bound
This is a wonderful cookbook that I highly recommend!

The first section is titled "Intro to Cooking." The description reads, "Here's everything you need to know about what to stock, how to shop, how to chop, and more -- a starting point you'll return to again and again." It explains cooking methods and terms, cooking techniques, equipment (includes pots & pans, appliances, gadgets, etc.), fruits and vegetables (buying, storing, cleaning, cutting information) and ingredients/pantry (even giving basic information on how long things like flour, rice, etc. are good for, where you can find them in your grocery store, and how to store them at home). I'm thinking I can learn right along with my daughters! This section is incredibly helpful (lots of photos and descriptions) on how to do even the most basic kitchen tasks.

The other chapters are: Any-Day Appetizers & Snacks, Satisfying Sides, Breakfast Anytime, Slow & Savory Meat Main Dishes, Quick-to-Fix Meat Meals, Market-Fresh Fish and Shellfish, Platefuls of Pasta, Rice & Grains, Make-It-a-Meal Salads, Bowls of Soups & Stews, That's a Wrap, Sandwich or Pizza, and Something Sweet. Each page has an "Ask Mom" section at the very bottom which tells you which pages to turn to if you don't know how to do certain tasks, like seed and peel an avocado, chop an onion, snip fresh herbs, juice a lemon, how much juice does one lemon yield?, what is a garlic clove?, how do I mince garlic?, how do I peel tomatoes?, how do I seed tomatoes?, how do I chop a tomato? and how do I handle hot chili peppers? There are tips and info scattered throughout the book as well.

The recipes are rated 1, 2 or 3 depending on difficulty level.

Maybe even *I* can cook now!
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