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A Well-Seasoned Kitchen Hardcover – January 1, 2009
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If you are like me you spend time (a lot of time) reading cookbooks. While searching for the next best meal or this weekend's dinner party menu, you sift through just-okay recipes, glad-you-didn't-try-that recipes, great recipes, and soon-to-be-favorite recipes. It seems more often than not the great and soon-to-be-favorite recipes are the easiest to make and the most delicious. Unfortunately they come few and far between. Lucky for food lovers, an entire soon-to-be-favorite cookbook has arrived! I spent much of the holidays reading and taste testing the recipes from the cookbook A Well-Seasoned Kitchen. A Well-Seasoned Kitchen was written by a mother daughter team from Denver - Sally Clayton and Lee Clayton Roper. The cookbook is more than just recipes; it's a memoir of the cooking duo's most loved dishes and stories from the family kitchen. Most recipes are easy to make with tips and tricks on simple yet elegant entertaining.
Who is A Well-Seasoned Kitchen written for? Anyone who loves to cook, loves to entertain, loves to bring family into the kitchen, and loves to eat. There are recipes that range from quick enough for a weeknight meal to entertaining a crowd. It's full of great and soon-to-be-favorite recipes that everyone can enjoy.
How is the book organized? More than 180 recipes are organized into 11 recipe sections: appetizers, breakfast and brunch, soups, salads, poultry, meats, fish and seafood, pasta, vegetarian main dishes, side dishes, and desserts. The sections are divided by colored pages so it's quick to find the course you are looking for - light blue for soups, peach for meats, yellow for side dishes, etc. The book also includes an introduction on why the cookbook was created and ends with a listing of menu ideas so you can throw the best parties too!
Where can we find more information and get a sneak peak? Check out their website. Sally and Lee's entire story is shared with you including Sally's fight with Alzheimer's. A portion of proceeds from cookbook sales is donated to the Alzheimer s Association Colorado Chapter. The site then teases you with a few soon-to-be-favorite recipes like Overnight Bundt Caramel Rolls and Hearts of Palm Dip. But they are nothing compared to the entire collection in this book! (How about Melted Gruyere and Bacon Dip, Avocado and Crab Salad, and Oven Roasted Turkey with Apple-Sausage Stuffing? Mouths watering yet?) The website also includes a sampling of the menus and parties the ladies have thrown, and of course, where you can get your own copy. With a little something for everyone including delicious recipes, party planning tips, and heartwarming tales of the love of food throughout Sally and Lee's lives, A Well-Seasoned Kitchen should be a staple in all kitchens. --Kindra Evensen, Denver Food Examiner, Jan 4, 2010
There's always room for another cookbook on my shelves---assuming, of course, it's worth its salt. And determining that takes time and many test runs in the kitchen. For the last couple months, I've been smitten with A Well-Seasoned Kitchen by Denverite Lee Clayton Roper and her late mother, Sally Clayton. The book has the feel of a Junior League cookbook with beautiful pictures and classic dishes, but I find the fare more engaging. The homespun recipes are easy to follow but finely tuned and brightly flavored. Favorites thus far include the gooey overnight Bundt caramel rolls (perfect for Easter morning); the light spinach salad with lemon-pine-nut dressing; the springy, minted green beans with feta and pecans; and the savory roasted-chicken sausage and butternut squash (I used Italian sausage). Next up: rhubarb pie---the quintessential rite of spring. When Lee conceived of the cookbook, it was to engage her mother, who was slowly slipping away to Alzheimer's disease. Now, as a finished work, A Well-Seasoned --Amanda Faison, 5280 Magazine, April 2, 2010
There's always room for another cookbook on my shelves---assuming, of course, it's worth its salt. And determining that takes time and many test runs in the kitchen. For the last couple months, I've been smitten with A Well-Seasoned Kitchen by Denverite Lee Clayton Roper and her late mother, Sally Clayton. The book has the feel of a Junior League cookbook with beautiful pictures and classic dishes, but I find the fare more engaging. The homespun recipes are easy to follow but finely tuned and brightly flavored. Favorites thus far include the gooey overnight Bundt caramel rolls (perfect for Easter morning); the light spinach salad with lemon-pine-nut dressing; the springy, minted green beans with feta and pecans; and the savory roasted-chicken sausage and butternut squash (I used Italian sausage). Next up: rhubarb pie---the quintessential rite of spring. When Lee conceived of the cookbook, it was to engage her mother, who was slowly slipping away to Alzheimer's disease. Now, as a finished work, A Well-Seasoned Kitchen catalogs those precious moments spent in the kitchen, cooking, talking, and sharing family history. Bonus: A portion of A Well-Seasoned Kitchen's proceeds benefit the Alzheimer's Association Colorado Chapter --Amanda Faison, 5280 Magazine, April 2, 2010
About the Author
Lee was inspired by her mother Sally s love of cooking and entertaining to gather friends and family together over great meals and conversation. In fact, Lee held her first dinner party at the age of 16. Throughout the years, Lee has provided recipes, menu advice and cooking tips to friends seeking uncomplicated and delicious ideas for home entertaining. In November of 2009, Lee published A Well-Seasoned Kitchen, the cookbook she co-authored with her mother. The book has received numerous rave reviews and praise and has been featured in both local and national press. In May 2010, A Well-Seasoned Kitchen was awarded a Living Now gold medal, given to books that help people lead better lives .
Lee teaches cooking classes at the Denver Botanic Gardens, The Seasoned Chef Cooking School and in people s homes. She is frequently invited to conduct cooking demonstrations by local broadcast stations and cable networks as well as at culinary events throughout the state. Lee speaks publicly on the loving story behind the book, to both large and small groups. She was the keynote speaker at the Christian Living Communities annual fundraising dinner and also one of four featured authors at the Assistance League of Cincinnati s annual luncheon.
Lee is also a principal with Marbalee Media, a video production company she formed with the Emmy-award winning producer Deren Abram. As a producer and writer, she focuses on the development of travel, food and cooking lifestyle content.
Lee s professional career prior to immersing herself in the culinary arts was in the cable television business. She held senior executive positions with Charter Communications, United Pan-Europe Communications (a Liberty Media subsidiary), Rifkin & Associates and United Cable Television, and consulted with cable TV operators and programmers around the world, providing marketing, new business development and strategic planning advice. Lee has relied heavily on her marketing and product development skills in the creation and promotion of her current endeavors.
You can find Lee on line at seasonedkitchen.com, or follow her on Facebook.com/seasonedkitchen, Youtube.com/seasonedkitchen, pinterest.com/seasonedkitchen and twitter.com/seasonedkitchen.
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Top customer reviews
Two is that A Well Seasoned Kitchen makes a great gift, just because of what it is: A labor of love between a mother and a daughter, to share their family's recipes and traditions. I bought several as client Christmas gifts -- huge hit. Scattered throughout are family photos with "well seasoned memory" captions. It's a cookbook with lots of heart.
If there is a third reason why this cookbook gets my 5 stars, it'd have to be the White Bean & Chicken Chili (p61.) Or the Avacodo & Grapefruit Salad (p 66.) Or the Enchilada Pie (and the story of how it came to be, p. 137.) Or the Kentucky Corn Pudding, mmm, p. 198. Or the Palisade Peach Pie (p224)...
Whether you love to cook, cook to love, or just need to get some good food on the table easily and quickly -- this cookbook will end up open on the counter the most. Bon appetite!
The first thing I noticed about A Well-Seasoned Kitchen was that I already had every (non-perishable) ingredient in my kitchen – or there was an easy substitute. For practical home chefs, this is a big deal — it's so much easier to ask someone to "pick up a pound of chicken breasts" than "pick up white wine vinegar, shallots, fresh tarragon, fresh chervil, capers, and Pondicherry peppercorns" or to remember what you need. Moreover, it makes it a snap to improvise something delicious from whatever you pull out of the freezer.
The second thing I noticed was how straightforward and tasty the recipes are. This is not a cookbook to show off with — it's a cookbook to entertain with — this means you don't have to spend so hours in the kitchen before your dinner party and end up too exhausted to enjoy it. The recipes also double (or triple) easily for larger groups.
I haven't made a single recipe I didn't like – though sometimes I adjust the salt and spices to my own taste – so my "favorites" would just be what I made. I suggest that you leaf through it and make what looks good to you, but the soups are worth a special mention. (And the Kahlua chocolate mousse... I also tried replacing the Kahlua with peppermint schnapps... yum!)