Basic home cooking gets its full expression in the Taste Of Home Cooking School Cookbook, the written version of the popular classes and demonstrations. This book begins with the basics of equipment and quickly moves into the kitchen offering tips along the way covering everything from measuring to tips for choosing the best ingredients.
This isn’t a book for advanced chefs but it is handy for beginners. Many of the recipes use prepackaged ingredients including frozen dough, bottled sauces, and canned vegetables. There are also tips for augmenting existing Items such as adding curry, honey, and garlic to ketchup, mayonnaise, and mustard as well as adding spices and herbs to butter.
The Better Than Takeout section features burgers, pizza, wraps, coconut shrimp, and more. A Soups section is heavy on comfort food favorites such as chicken and dumpling soup. The entrees too are things you might have eaten as a child including meatloaf, lasagna, and pot roast. A wide variety of casseroles abound. Recipes have been contributed by home cooks around the country and often showcase regional favorites. There is also fancier fare including crepes, crab cakes, and beef Wellington. A chapter on side dishes includes a plethora of salads that would fit in well at just about any potluck meal.
Recipes include calorie information but given the amount of cheese in these recipes you may not want to look. The calorie conscious might also want to avoid the cream and butter laden dessert chapter. The book however, delivers on its promise offering tastes of home, all the treats of the past we tend to deny ourselves now. It isn’t the healthiest cookbook I have seen lately but in many ways it is the most comforting.