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A Man, a Can, a Grill: 50 No-Sweat Meals You Can Fire Up Fast Hardcover – Bargain Price, May 16, 2003

4.2 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews

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--This text refers to the Board book edition.

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This gimmicky cookbook, printed on the stiff, cardboard pages more often seen in picture books for infants, offers a set of exceedingly easy recipes for the fellow whose favorite kitchen tool is the can opener. Promising to make any man "king of the grill," Joachim (A Man, A Can, A Plan) presents recipes in simple equations, with photographs of all the main ingredients stacked in basic, arithmetical order (in other words, one barely needs to know how to read): a can of beer plus a can of chopped jalapenos plus a flank steak plus flour tortillas (along with a few seasonings and garnishes) renders a plate of reasonably tasty Beer-Flamed Fajitas; a can of chicken broth plus a can of light coconut milk plus a lime plus some boneless chicken breasts and spices makes Spicy Bangkok Birdies. Running alongside the images are drill-sergeant directions on how to combine the ingredients: "In a big bowl, nuke everything but the chicken....Dump in the chicken....Fire up your grill," run the Bangkok Birdies instructions. With ingredients ranging from soda pop to SPAM (Pakistani Pork Chops call for the former, while the latter appears in SPAM Cordon Bleu and Mushroom SPAMwiches), and from Pringles to refrigerated pizza dough, this is not a book for the seriously health conscious, though fat and calories are listed and are often reasonable. Rather, it seems geared toward the busy good ol' boy craving a manly meal, to whom a "perfectly roasted whole chicken...with an open beer can stuck up its...um...orifice" (the recipe for Beer-Can Chicken) sounds appealing.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Board book edition.

Review

“Twenty years ago, the first chicken I ever cooked on a grill burst into flames before I opened the lid to turn it. I wish A Man, a Can, a Grill had been there before that happened. Thanks to David Joachim, I'll never set a chicken on fire again.” ―Don Mauer, author of A Guy's Guide to Great Eating

“These easy, flavorful recipes for the grill are streamlined and smart. Real food--so good that no one will ever guess your secret is in the can.” ―Andrew Schloss, author of Cooking with Three Ingredients and Dinner's Ready

--This text refers to the Board book edition.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 46 pages
  • Publisher: Rodale Books (May 16, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1579547672
  • ASIN: B000QUUTR8
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.1 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #728,925 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Board book
This sturdy paperboard cookbook, presented by Men's Health magazine, is geared for guys who are novices at cooking and looking for easy meals to prepare on the grill. These 50 recipes, each of which is enhanced with ingredients out of cans, include beef, chicken, fish, pizza, pork, Spam, turkey, and veggies. Among the recipes are beer-can chicken, red-hot ribs, Dr Pepper-glazed ham, teriyaki turkey, and spuds on a stick.
The main ingredients and the finished product are illustrated with photographs. The book includes nutritional information, tips on the art of grilling, and a generous dollop of humor. Some of these recipes might be a little tricky for the novice cook to prepare, considering the unpredictability of a grill's flames and heat level, but there are still plenty of foolproof meals here beyond basic burgers and chicken that are great for feeding (and impressing) guests.
Eileen Rieback
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Format: Board book
Let's face it, we all love being a little creative in the kitchen or around the grill every now and then. Who would have thought ordinary canned cola or beer would add great taste to the best meats on the grill? Mix a budweiser with worcestershire sauce, grilling mix, and a small jar of chopped jalapenos and you have a wild barbecue mix making you believe you may be out in the Caribbeans. Or a can of sloppy joe barbecue sauce mixed with jalapenos. There are recipes a plenty guaranteed to fire up your taste buds.
Author David Joachim, who also penned A MAN, A CAN, A PLAN gives many great tips for perfecting your roastings for the grill. This book is a real must for anybody inviting guests over for a summer barbecue. Whether it's steak fajitas doused in beer, a rotisserie chicken grilled with a can of budweiser up the (orifice), or ordinary St. Louis Style Ribs - there are no limits as to what an ordinary can will do to add flavor to your favorite dishes. Highly recommended for any barbecue chef wannabes out there!
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Format: Board book Verified Purchase
I bought this book to help me lend a hand at home to my wife with cooking. I'm pretty hopeless as a cook; she's been the primary one for our family for 25 years.

On the plus side, the meals in this book are easy to follow, very tasty, and the wife genuinely appreciated the gesture. The entree ideas are clever and make a little effort appear like someone who's actually talented at cooking.

On the minus side, the meal ideas are all entrees - so don't forget a seasoned bag of frozen veggies and starch side like a baked potato or rice-in-a-microwave bag. Also the heavy cardboard pages mean there aren't 100's of ideas in here (that's actually a plus - I'd rather have 15 great meals to choose and rotate from than 150 mediocre ones). Still, I'd like to have a bit more variety.

One unintentional minus - my kids like some of the meals so much, it's actually annoyed my wife a little when they sometimes chant "daddy cook! daddy cook!".
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Format: Board book Verified Purchase
This item shipped quickly and was used right away by a son in college. He loved it and the recipes were very easy. The only reason not 5 star is I had the impression that this used only a couple of ingredients and it turns out there are items they expected him to have on hand.
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Format: Hardcover
During the summer and fall of 2011 I made all 50 recipes in the book "A Man, A Can, A Grill" and blogged about it - [...]. It was kind of a man-version of the "Julie and Julia" blog (and movie) where Julie Powell, a fan of Julia Child, made every recipe in her "Mastering the Art of French Cooking" cookbook. I just ripped off the idea, but gave full credit where credit is due.
Of the 50 recipes there were five my wife and I actually LIKED. (1) Big Ball of Shrimp Scampi, (2) Pocketful of Spam (except it would be better with HAM!) (3) Spam Goes Hawaiian (basically Spam Kabobs - make it with HAM!), (4) Buffalo Chicken Pizza (except make it with Boboli bread or some other prepared pizza dough. The pizzas in this book end up looking like autopsies!) and (5) Jah Mon Jerk Pork Chops. The rest left us with questions:

1) What should we eat WITH IT (the book gives little advice about side dishes, and when it does they were not much to OUR liking).
2) Why so much BEER marinade?
3) Must EVERYTHING be marinaded? Why not some basic rubs or why does he not recommend smoking anything?
4) I get that the title says "A Man. a CAN etc." but why use SPAM in a can when ham tastes and grills so much better?
5) Why do so many of the recipes mix tomatoes and fruit?

Toward the end of the adventure, I found myself checking OTHER books. If for example, the recipe was to be Chicken Breasts and Cherries, (YUK!!!) I'd look in the Weber Big Book of Grilling to see what THAT said about chicken and fruit. Often when I did this cross-check the second recipe was vastly better, so I would go with that. Of course, that's not how it was done in Julia and Julia I'm afraid! She followed every recipe to the letter.
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Format: Board book
Looking through this "cookbook" I was amazed that it would be promoted by Men's Health Magazine. A majority of the ingredients for the recipes require processed and/or canned goods high in both fat and sodium.

Anyone who is motivated enough to read a recipe and follow the instructions can do better than what is offered here. With the thick, kid-book like pages, the book seems geared more to a teen. The draw back, however, is that each recipe requires a trip to the store as the ingredients are not something typically stocked at home.
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