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In her new cookbook, Cook Like a Pro, Ina Garten shares a brand-new collection of recipes, tips, and techniques, so readers can cook with confidence no matter how much experience they have in the kitchen.
As America's most trusted and beloved cookbook author, Ina Garten--the Barefoot Contessa--has taught millions of people how to cook. A home cook at heart, Ina knows that cooking and entertaining can be difficult, so to make her recipes simple and streamlined, she tests and retests each recipe until it's as straightforward and delicious as possible. Although Ina is completely self-taught and doesn't consider herself to be a "professional" cook, she has spent decades working with chefs and learning the techniques that take their cooking to the next level. In Cook Like a Pro, Ina shares some of her most irresistible recipes and very best "pro tips," from the secret to making her custardy, slow-cooked Truffled Scrambled Eggs to the key to the crispiest and juiciest Fried Chicken Sandwiches. Ina will even show you how to make an easy yet showstopping pattern for her Chocolate Chevron Cake--your friends won't believe you decorated it yourself!
For Ina, cooking like a pro also means hosting like a pro, and along with know-how like how to tell when a filet of beef is perfectly cooked, you'll find dozens of other great ideas to boost your cooking and entertaining skills such as how to set up an elegant home bar and how to make an impressive Raspberry Baked Alaska that can be completely prepared ahead of time so all you need to do is finish it for your guests before serving. Beginner and advanced cooks alike will love Ina's delectable recipes, and if you have questions along the way, don't worry--Ina's practical cooking advice talks you through every detail, as though she were right there by your side.
With beautiful photos and a treasury of pro tips that span prepping, making, and serving, as Ina says, "You don't have to be a pro to cook like one!"
Food Network host Garten's disappointing 11th cookbook revolves around the author's professional tips intended to elevate home cooking, but much of her advice will come as no surprise. She begins by touching on basics, such as proper seasoning ("You've been under-salting") and plating ("Plating food is like arranging flowers in a vase") that are helpful yet too familiar. A tomato and avocado salad incorporates arugula, lemon juice, and red onion, and the helpful hints include instructions to use a serrated knife to cut the tomatoes. A sidebar on baking (deemed "very scientific") cautions that an oven takes 20 minutes to preheat. A recipe for turkey sandwiches made with store-bought mayonnaise suggests toasting the bread in the oven, but doesn't explain why that's preferable to using a toaster. Many dishes are inspired by other recipes: the fried chicken sandwich from Shake Shack, and Charlie Bird's farro salad with shaved parmesan (use a vegetable peeler, Garten advises), which is based on a recipe written by Melissa Clark in the New York Times. As a result, Garten's own style doesn't shine through. Her recipes are all perfectly sound, but the lack of a strong point of view or game-changing advice makes this one of her lesser collections.