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Dinner: Changing the Game Hardcover – March 7, 2017
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"The recipes in Melissa Clark’s Dinner are everything I want for my dinner. Dishes which are familiar but fresh, approachable but exciting. The tone of the book is also just the sort of company I’d want around my table: Melissa is experienced enough in the kitchen to know that being relaxed is the only way to approach the evening meal. It should be fun, it should be easy, it should be delicious."—YOTAM OTTOLENGHI
“Melissa Clark has an extrasensory ability to divine what we want to eat and a secret knowledge of how to take a familiar dish and make it just a little more interesting. In following her lead, dinner gets more delicious and we become better cooks.” —PETER MEEHAN
“Dinner is an expertly useful tool for the home cook. Melissa Clark has stripped away fussiness and pretension and replaced it with sensibility and flavor. This is food that you will absolutely crave!” —MICHAEL SOLOMONOV
“Brilliant, vibrant, doable ideas that will change the way you think about dinner. You’ll cook out of this book for years. Empowering.” —DIANA HENRY
“Melissa Clark will take your tired dinner repertoire, shake it out, and give it a transfusion of enthusiasm, flavor, and whip-smart efficiency. In Dinner, she takes the timeless task of cooking pleasing yet inspiring dinners and waves away the challenge. Dinner won't get Melissa —or you—down. She had me dreaming of kofte and kimchi pork chops, coconut rice noodles and green aioli chicken salad.” —AMANDA HESSER
"Melissa Clark, cooking columnist at The New York Times, [has] become the culinary equivalent of Walter Cronkite: the most trusted name in America. In our kitchen, the pages of her newest book, Dinner: Changing The Game, has already been splattered with several years’ worth of sauce and oil—and the book was just published in March. It is, stated baldly, a terrific and terrifically practical book, with dishes that span global influences, unabashed about its bold spicing, with a one-baking-sheet ethos that advocates for both convenience and melding of pan juices."—KEVIN PANG
"Clark’s book — shot by Eric Wolfinger, the LeBron James of food photography — seems to solve every dinner problem from the rote “It’s 6:00 — what do I make for the kids?” to the head-scratching “What do I make for my fancy friends?” Here’s the crazy thing, though: Often the answer to both questions is the same recipe."--The New York Times
"Over 200 why-didn’t-I-think-of-that recipes that could be on a table near you in under an hour."--Bon Appétit
"[Clark] wants to empower home cooks to tinker with her recipes, not just follow them."--Food & Wine
"The New York Times's superstar wants you to know that killer single-pot meals are dead simple."--Esquire
"Unlike her contemporaries, Clark has a good pulse on the cooking techniques du jour."--Eater
"Dinner maps out a week of realistic at-home dinners that transform throughout the week." --Bon Appetit.com
"Dinner is here to help you streamline your weeknight cooking strategy, master new techniques and support you when you call scrambled eggs dinner. In fact, it'll tell you to go right ahead and add smoked trout and silky cream cheese."--Tasting Table
"This new cookbook overflows with such touches that transform a soup or salad into a satisfying meal, as well as clever twists and why-didn’t-I-think-of-that flavor combinations."--Publishers Weekly
"With Clark as mentor, the dinner game has changed--and you're the winner."--Bookpage
"A stellar collection of low-effort, high-impact meals."--Library Journal
"Clark has perfected the quickly prepped dinner hustle...even though the meals are essentially thrown together, they look pretty gourmet on the plate."--Well + Good
"Inventive flavor-packed twists on classic meals using just a few unique ingredients."--Closer Weekly
About the Author
Melissa Clark is a staff writer for the New York Times, where she writes the Food section’s popular column, “A Good Appetite” and stars in a weekly complementary video series. The recipient of both IACP and James Beard awards, Clark appears frequently on “Today” and on public radio. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and daughter.
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Melissa Clark has yet to let me down.
Confession: I'm a long-time fan of Clark's. My husband and I own two of her other cookbooks and frequently make her recipes from The New York Times' Cooking website. Some of those recipes (or similar versions) appear in this book, such as the anchovy chicken and the spicy pork noodles with ginger and bok choy. The anchovy chicken achieves maximum flavor from minimal effort and is a frequent weeknight dish, while the noodles are more of a tasty weekend project.
Most of the recipes, however, are new to me. The spicy Mexican Tortilla soup was the answer to my long search for an authentic-tasting version on a weeknight time frame, made easier by purchasing pre-made tortilla strips. (Passed muster with Mexican husband!)
The jalapeño-honey skirt steak was another winner that came together quickly and gave sweet heat to an old favorite.
Since we've only had this book for three days, I look forward to cooking my way through the rest of it, although her time frames for certain recipes are perhaps a little optimistic for all but very experienced chefs. Clark's introduction is fairly candid about the fact that time estimates are aspirational until you've cooked something a few times and suggests wine as a way to zen out and embrace the process. (Yes, please.)
As for ingredients? Some of them (sumac,
Pomegranate molasses) probably aren't in your pantry. However, Clark usually mentions substitutions, and an ingredient will frequently be used in more than one recipe. Push yourself! It's worth it!
After all, the title is "Changing the Game," not "Same old stuff."