has long been a major source for online recipes, but The Epicurious Cookbook: More Than 250 of Our Best-Loved Four-Fork Recipes for Weeknights, Weekends & Special Occasions
is their first foray into the world of physical cookbooks. Unlike most first cookbooks, these recipes have been tested for years in home kitchens, and rated. The recipes come from an especially wide range of contributors — avid homecooks, seasoned cookbook authors like Dorie Greenspan, sought after caterers like Serena Bass, and acclaimed chefs like Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Tom Colicchio, David Chang, Edna Lewis, and Jonathan Waxman. Some are culled from the pages of Gourmet
and Bon Appetit
magazines. While the provenance is varied, what the recipes do have in common is that they have all achieved a four fork rating from the users of the site.
While you hope that all recipes in all cookbooks are thoroughly and well tested, the recipes here have been tested, rated and commented on by users daily. And the comments are included here — a pureeing tip for the Salmon cakes, a suggestion to double up on the less expensive seafood in the Cioppino recipe or to swap out the pricey chanterelles with more common button mushrooms in the mushroom pizza with caramelized onions, fontina and rosemary from the Woodfire Grill in Atlanta. A warning that you are going to want to make much much more of the sauce in Kevin Rathburn's Lime and Coconut Shrimp with Red Curry Sauce
appetizer and pour it over steamed jasmine rice and veggies for dinner as well.
The photos are inviting and trendily rustic, lots of wooden tables, slate and chunky plates, but there is not a photo for each recipe. And the and editors take an interesting organizational approach with this cookbook. The recipes are all divided first by season and then into breakfast, starters, mains, sides, breads and sandwiches, and desserts. Handy for seasonal eating, but the full list of recipes that fall into each section isn't printed in the table of contents or on the opening page of each chapter, which makes it difficult to casually skim. But the index is extensive and the menu suggestions including Easy comfort foods
: Chicken and Fall Vegetable Pot Pie, Beef Short Ribs Tagine, Spicy Mac and Cheese with Pancetta, Deviled Fried Chicken, Chili con Carne with Chili Cheddar Shortcakes, Fast Weeknight Dinners:
Quick Paella, Wild Rice with Pecans, Raisin, and Orange Essence, Brussels Sprouts Hash with Caramelized Shallots, Rosemary Lamb Chops with Swiss Chard and Balsamic Syrup, Pan-Fried Spicy Orange Tilapia, Please-Everyone Vegetarian and Vegan Dishes
: Chilled Soba with Tofu and Sugar Snap Peas, Spiced Lentil Tacos with Chipotle Sour Cream, Roasted Eggplant Salad and Special occasion show-stoppers:
Tom Colicchio’s Herb-Butter Turkey, Beef Brisket with Merlot and Prunes, Wine-Braised Duck Legs, are super helpful and inspiring.