Monday, June 20, 2011 at 09:18AM
"New-NEW Culinary Classic...NOT Just For Dummies!"
7-DAY MENU PLANNER FOR DUMMIES
by Susan Nicholson, RD/LD
[Paperback, 342 pages, $19.99 U.S. - buy for less on Amazon.com]
Being a woman "of a certain age" and married for 20+ years, I have been cooking for a long time. I admit, I am far from gourmet: I don't specialty shop; I don't watch the TV cooking shows or reality shows starring angry chefs and their desperate-to-please minions; glossy gourmet food and recipe magazines make me nervous.
I do have skills. I have one small shelf of cookbooks in my kitchen. I can cover the basics, having more or less successfully fed and nourished a healthy family of five for some time now. Culled from a 25-year-old, well-worn copy of the cooking classic: BETTY CROCKER'S COOKBOOK (1987), family magazines and, in more recent years, recipe searches on AllRecipes.com for the iPhone and iPad, I have compiled my very own cookbook: a mish-mash of photocopies, hand-written classics and typed recipes, all carefully preserved in plastic page protectors and haphazardly "filed" in a white, plastic-coated (easy wipe!), 3-ring binder.
However, having said all of that:
Even with my vast and very practical culinary knowledge and experience, I love, Love, LOVE Susan Nicholson's 7-DAY MENU PLANNER FOR DUMMIES. An instant new-NEW classic, this book should be a treasured kitchen bible for every man, woman or young adult trying to prepare and serve nutritious, delicious, affordable and do-able meals for a family, couple or even healthy meals for one.
Susan Nicholson is a registered dietitian and creator of the 7-Day Menu Planner newspaper column, featured in major newspapers and in online syndication, too. She is a culinary professional and a talented writer with a lot of experience and a great sense of humor, which makes 7-Day Menu Planner for Dummies more than just another cookbook.
7-Day Menu Planner for Dummies gives you a year's worth of weekly dinner idea and recipes that "take about 30 minutes to prepare, contain an average of 30 percent calories from fat, and use common ingredients to save time and money." It is a well-organized and simple roadmap for menu planning, offering great recipes, practical instruction and tips, and a very consistent weekly plan of coordinated dinners: Family Night; Kid's Night (not just for children!); Express Meal; Budget Night; Heat and Eat; Meatless Night; and Easy Entertaining. I love the fact that the week's meals are coordinated to use ingredients in common and a central philosophy of reduce, re-use, recycle and re-format throughout the week's plan. (Trust me, not repetitious, you will not get bored!)
7-Day Menu Planner for Dummies makes planning and preparing meals less of a chore and more fun: simple, easy, quick, healthy and delicious. Whether you are an old pro in the kitchen or a culinary "noob" (as my kids say), make room on your cookbook shelf for a new classic: