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Cover & Bake (Best Recipe) Hardcover – September 30, 2004

4.3 out of 5 stars 48 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 338 pages
  • Publisher: Cook's Illustrated; 1st edition (September 30, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0936184809
  • ISBN-13: 978-0936184807
  • Product Dimensions: 11.2 x 8.6 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (48 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #257,545 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Richard W. Miller on November 15, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I own all 12 volumes of the "Best Recipe" cookbook series as well as all other volumes issued by Cook's Illustrated. I purchased all of them as they were issued. When the fourth volume in the Best Recipe series, "American Classics", was issued, their began to emerge complaints concerning Cook's repeating recipes from volume to volume.The tacit accussation was that Cook's was dishonestly repackaging already published material for additional profits. The review by Hoc Stercus, below. seems to be levelling this same accuasation at the current volume, "Cover and Bake". I would like to put this notion to rest once and for all. Each of the issued volumes (as does "Cover and Bake") has presented a plethora of new recipes and useful culinary information. They have also included pertinent recipes (and other information) tested and presented in previous volumes in the series, as they should. For example the best recipes for stove-top and baked macaroni and cheese were presented way back in the first volume of the series. Since the subject of "Cover and Bake" is just these sorts of recipes, would it be fair of Cook's Illustrated to omit these classic casserole recipes and refer the reader to a previous volume ? This would be the height of dishonesty and profit grubbing. Or do you think perhaps that Cook's, for the sake of novelty, should offer a recipe for mac & cheese other rthan the best the've developed to date? When I want the best recipe for fried chicken, I would be disappointed if it did not appear in the volume "American Classics" simply because it was published at an earlier date in the first book in the series. I expect such classic recipes to appear in all of the volumes to which they are appropriate. There is inevitably some overlap in volume coverage (e. g,.Read more ›
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Format: Hardcover
I love to cook. I love to eat good food. But, I have a job, a preschooler, an old house, elderly relatives that need my help...the list goes on. Life is too busy for all of us and we are all guilty of making poor food choices because of our lack of time.

I'm not going to repeat the praise offered by other reviewers; I concur with all of it. The reason why people should buy this book (or give as a gift) is because each and every recipe has detailed instructions for making these dishes ahead of time and refrigerating or freezing them. Most of the dishes can be frozen for at least one month, many for two or even three months. And, best of all, they taste great no matter when they eat them.

This cookbook has made my busy life simpler. I love to share good food with my friends and family, and Cover & Bake makes that easy to do. I have relied on recipes from Cook's Illustrated for years and now, when I'm at a time in my life where time is scarce, I can continue to produce great food in a short period of time.

Just a sampling of how I've been able to utilize this book:

1. Spend one day every month preparing 4-5 casseroles that go straight into the freezer.

2. Make one "fresh" casserole each week that is eaten right away.

3. Prepare the food for a party 2-3 days in advance so my final hours before the party are focused on cleaning up after my preschooler!

4. Share one casserole each week with elderly relatives; I can even make up individual sized portions easily.

5. Made a few casseroles for a friend's freezer while she was recuperating in the hospital.

6. Shared a few casseroles with a friend who was at home with her new baby.

This is a great cookbook to have, and great cookbook to give away. I am excited by it.
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Format: Hardcover
The Cooks Illustrated web-site said that over 60% of the recipes in this book are new. I only have one other CI book, but I get the magazine (for a long time), and most of them are new to me.

I am very happy with this cookbook. I have cooked from it several times a week since I received it 2 months ago. So far, I would like to make most of the recipes again. A few I didn't care for, but probably because they were not my tastes, not because they were bad recipes.

The techniques used in this cookbook are great and can be used in your own recipes. For example, they suggest to only partially cook raw chicken in your sauce, etc., as opposed to adding diced cooked chicken, like so many casserole recipes require. The chicken tastes so much better this way.

In addition to casserole recipes, there are great recipes for making meals all in one skillet, recipes for using in your slow cooker, and some great breakfast dishes. There is also a good chapter on side dishes.

Another feature I appreciate is the "planning ahead" that accompanies most recipes. It tells you exactly what can be done ahead, and how to adjust the cooking time if you do. This is something they rarely discuss in their magazine, and I am happy they tackled this, because it will be very helpful for entertaining.

There are recipes using meat, poultry and seafood. There are also quite a few good vegetarian recipes, like tamale pie, vegetable pot pie, sopa seca, plus side dishes and some of the breakfast casseroles. They say in the book that they made some of these recipes from scratch, and I believe it. There is some real creativity in here, while at the same time you are getting recipes for some old standards you would expect, like mac n' cheese and pot pies.

If you like casserole type dishes, and/or if you like Cook's Illustrated recipes, I highly recommend this book. It is a new favorite of mine.
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