Make it Ahead: A Barefoot Contessa Cookbook by Ina Garten
While Ina's recipes aren't always the cheapest and definitely aren't the easiest I find them the most reliable. I know if I make something of Ina's it's going to be good and usually not just good but deliciously good.
So when I heard she had a new cookbook coming out and it was about meals you could do the prep work ahead of time I had to have it!
So the question is - since this book has been sitting on my kitchen shelves for more than a month do I use it? Answer? Not really.
It's not that it's a bad book. It's really really not. It's full of interesting recipes and I've tagged a lot of them. The main problem is I don't think it's full of regular recipes that my family would willingly eat on a Tuesday. I'm looking forward to making Roasted Red Pepper Hummus and Tomatoes and Burrata is high on my list of lunches for this summer when I'm drowning in tomatoes. There are a few that would work - French chicken pot pies made in individual serving dishes and topped with (store-bought) puff pastry for example. There's some interesting sides like Crusty Baked Potatoes with Whipped Feta or Parmesan Chive Smashed Potatoes. As well as a handful of desserts like Fresh Apple Spice Cake or Decadent (and Gluten Free) Chocolate Cake. The Tres Leches Cake with Berries sounds yummy and the day I make Ginger Shortbread will be a happy day.. However, this isn't a book I find myself turning to on a regular basis and the feel of it is a book geared more towards entertaining than a regular family meal. While Ina will still be a trusted source for recipes I think I'd recommend Barefoot Contessa At Home or Back to Basics.
The one recipes I've made multiple times out of this cookbook is Sour Cream Corn Bread. My husband is rather snooty about it and calls it "Yankee Corn Bread" It definitely is but it's delicious! For the record I'm not a corn bread fan but I love this one! This makes 2 loaves but I usually half it.
1/2 lb (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted, plus extra to grease the pans
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup Bob's Red Mill medium grind yellow cornmeal (I couldn't find this brand so I used stone ground corn meal and it's fine)
1/2 cup sugar
2 T baking powder
1 T kosher salt
1 1/4 cup whole milk (I used skim once because that was all I had and it worked out fine)
3/4 cup sour cream
2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature (I used large and had no problems)
Preheat the oven to 350. Grease and line the bottom of 2 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 x 2 inch loaf pans with parchment paper (I used a regular loaf pan, no parchment paper and cooking spray and haven't had any trouble with sticking)
Whisk together the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking poser, and salt in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the milk, sour cream, and eggs and then slowly whisk in the melted butter. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ones and mix them together with a rubber spatula, until combined. Don't overmix!
Pour the batter into the prepared pans, smooth the top, and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Place the pans on a rack and cool completely.
*It's fantastic with soups - especially a corn and cheddar chowder from her first book!
I'm linking up with Weekend Cooking hosted by Beth Fish Reads