Book Review: Fast and Fresh, by Julie Dannenbaum

Jennifer Thieme

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The title of this book sums it up quite well. Each and every recipe is truly Fast and Fresh.

You won't find any cream of mushroom soup here, and I cannot think of one recipe that called for something from a can. All ingredients are fresh, and the recipes are not difficult to follow. Most can be completed in about an hour, start to finish. The recipes are given in the context of complete menus, and a suggested work-order is given so you can time everything to be done at the same time. Most recipes include a dessert, and the author lists an appropriate drink to accompany your meal.

There are low calorie, entertaining, and international recipes, among others. It's a very complete and well-rounded book. This is an excellent choice for the cook who wants complete menus that are easy to prepare and don't use canned or processed foods. Anybody who's short on time, but who also want delicious dinners they will be proud to serve their families, will love it.

Two chapters at the back of the book give instructions for cooking methods and techniques, and also the author's recommendations for utensils and appliances. There is also a chapter devoted to basic, or essential, recipes, such as rice pilaf, home-made mayonnaise, bread sticks, and many others.

Each and every recipe I have tried has been excellent. I own many cookbooks, well-known and obscure, and this is the only one I can say that about.

On the down side, it's not the best choice for a totally beginning cook. The author assumes her reader has at least a fundamental knowledge of working in a kitchen. Also, as a small warning: the author seems a bit snobby about food and its preparation. On the one hand, I hate to even mention this, because the book is so good. But I feel I must in order to present an accurate review.

As of this writing, Fast and Fresh is not in print. Readers can easily find it on websites carrying used books.

Jennifer Thieme likes to write. She's received so much free, and useful, advice on the Internet, that she wants to return the favor. So she writes articles designed to help people, based on her experiences as a spiritual seeker, a Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor, a homeschooler, and stay-at-home mom. Contact information for Jennifer is available at the following link:


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