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Mark Bittman's Quick and Easy Recipes from the New York Times: Featuring 350 recipes from the author of HOW TO COOK EVERYTHING and THE BEST RECIPES IN THE WORLD Paperback – May 22, 2007

4.5 out of 5 stars 40 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Culling 350 recipes from his New York Times "The Minimalist" column, Bittman offers a go-to volume for anyone who enjoys cooking simply. His recipes are easy to follow and execute, but they maintain a level of sophistication and freshness that many super-quick cookbooks lack. All recipes are marked with a realistic estimate of how much time they require, start to finish: Chicken with Coconut and Lime takes 20 minutes; Sparkling Cider Poached Fish takes 15 minutes; Coq au Vin with Prunes takes an hour. Several of the longer-duration entries don't require much hands-on work; the Bread Pudding with Shiitake Mushrooms, requires "about 1 hour, largely unattended" and the Braised and Brown Lamb with Peaches needs "about 1 ½ hours, largely unattended." Simple sauces, condiments and desserts such as Dried Fruit Poached in Port and Ginger Pots de Crème round out the selection of mostly dinner-appropriate recipes, which are perfect for home cooks who want to put tasty, impressive meals on the table frequently and without much fuss. (May)
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Review

“Mark Bittman's quick and easy recipes are much more than that, a definitive collection that takes as little as a half hour and results in truly remarkable food. That alone should empower you to drive past the take-out place and do some cooking.”
—Mario Batali

“Some cooks enjoy giving the impression that their work requires esoteric language and complicated skills. Mark Bittman is just the opposite. He is devoted to making it clear that great food can be created with few ingredients and a minimum of effort.”
—John Willoughby and Chris Schlesinger, coauthors of The Thrill of the Grill and License to Grill


"Mark Bittman makes great everyday cooking and eating possible in a harried world. He is a master of streamlining good food down to its essence without losing a jot of taste. Mark understands and loves exceptional food and enjoys cooking it. Under his tutelage, we can, too."
-Lynne Rossetto Kasper, host of The Splendid Table® on PBS and author of The Italian Country Table
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Clarkson Potter; First Edition edition (May 22, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0767926234
  • ISBN-13: 978-0767926232
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #247,581 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Lynn Harnett VINE VOICE on January 3, 2008
Format: Paperback
Featuring 350 recipes from Bittman's "New York Times" column, "The Minimalist," and originally published as three cookbooks - "The Minimalist Cooks at Home, "The Minimalist Cooks Dinner," and "The Minimalist Entertains," this well-organized, no-nonsense paperback caters to the home cook with its emphasis on simple, fast, fresh, and delicious.

From Garlic Soup with Shrimp to Pear and Gorgonzola Green Salad with Walnuts, to Herb-Rubbed Salmon, Pot Roast with Cranberries, Fast Potato Gratin, Pasta with Clams and Tomatoes, and Sautéed Bananas, Bittman provides simple directions and numerous variations which inspire the cook to branch out with his or her own ideas.

A simple Asian-style Cucumber Salad becomes dinner with the addition of chicken or scallops and maybe some jicama, apples, bean sprouts or watercress. Braises change character with a change of herb, an addition of butter, or a tweak of technique, like caramelizing the onions rather than simply softening.

Bittman ranges across the world with dishes like Lemongrass-Ginger Soup with Mushrooms, Grilled Chicken Thighs with Sauce au Chien, Lamb with Peppers and Yogurt Sauce, Cauliflower with Garlic and Anchovy, Curried Tofu with Soy Sauce, Pasta Risotto Style.

There's plenty of homey familiar fare too - Creamy Mushroom Soup, Fastest Roast Chicken, Deviled Chicken Thighs, Braised Pork with Turnips, Spaghetti Carbonara, Maple Bread Pudding and more. Time estimates are accurate for the organized cook and although not all dishes can be on the table in 30 minutes or less, few require more than 20 to 30 minutes actual prep time.

This is a book for every kitchen, every day.
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Format: Paperback
I received Mark Bittman's Quick and Easy Recipes for Christmas. I am an avid cook, but find that lately I don't have the time or energy to cook a full meal when I get home from work. Mark's book makes cooking a delicious meal easy and accessible.

Additionally, the recipes use common ingredients--and a limited number of ingredients per recipe. For example, Chicken Curry in a Hurry calls for 4 ingredients: vidalia onions, curry powder, chicken breasts, and sour cream (excluding cooking oil, salt, and pepper: too ubiquitous to be considered ingredients). Egg Drop Soup calls for 5 ingredients: chicken stock/broth, eggs, soy sauce, sesame oil, and scallions.

I recommend this book both to novice and experienced cooks that are looking for a go-to cookbook with reliable recipes.
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Format: Paperback
This book was typeset with all the ingredients and recipe notes in a very light tan ink color. In the Kindle version this translates to a very, very light gray. Do not buy the Kindle version of this book without trying the sample first to see if you can live with that. My husband and I decided we could not.
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Format: Paperback
This book appears to be contain the recipes from two previous NYT recipe compilations by Mark Bittman, "The Minimalist Cooks Dinner" and "The Minimalist Cooks At Home", possibly along with some new material (the cover copy also says it contains "The Minimalist Entertains", which I never got). I no longer have my copies of those Bittman books, so it is hard to certain. Since those collections were $25 hard backs and this is a $19 trade paperback, the savings are obvious, and any Bittman fan who doesn't have the "Minimalist" books will want to pick this up posthaste. The one draw back is that the design for this collection isn't as plush - no food photography, and no shiny pages. I also can't say how much overlap exists between the NYT "Minimalist" columns and "How To Cook Everything", since I don't have the Big Book (I was doing fine with the two "Minimalist" collections I had before they were lost in a move). Readers with a limited budget or minimal shelf space may need to compare this book with HTCE (and possibly "The Greatest Recipes In The World") to see if they really need or want this book.

But boy, I sure did like my two "Minimalist Cooks" collections, so I am delighted to have this compilation. Bittman makes even formidable sounding dishes sound approachable and his calm, spare, economical style makes me want to break out the pots and knives and have at the recipes without delay.

Some people might bridle at this as another "repackaging" of the Bittman brand name, but this particular collection just makes me happy.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I love this cookbook and go to these kinds of recipes most often. While I have to agree with one of the reviewers that I do prefer cookbooks with pictures, Bitmann's Quick & Easy is wonderful for last minute great ideas. I attended a culinary writing seminar 3 years ago and when I brought up this publication with the published instructor and her agent, I was just about laughed out of the room. "Pour and dump," they said, "is not culinary expertise." I beg to differ. I think it is the highest form of culinary expertise: to take what is already in your kitchen and perform magic. This is exactly what Bittman has done, given us a manual for creating magic out of simple, everyday ingredients. While I do not live in an urban center with all kinds of fresh fish, for example, available to me on my way home from work, I AM looking for an easy way to create something smashing in the least amount of time possible. And I, personally, am of the humble opinion that this is what most "foodies" today want: a reprieve from convenience and fast food to please their palettes. Whole foods and tasty ingredients do give us that, if we know how to manipulate them. I love this book and it, and other publications like it, take the forefront of my extensive recipe collection.
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