Simple Comforts


Simple Comforts, 50 Heartwarming Recipes, by Sur La Table, Andrews McMeel 2010, $15.00 hardcover, 136 pages


How nice to have all the foods we all love in this neat little package of a book–especially when the seasons change and your thoughts move from watermelons and tomatoes to coffeecake and beef stew.

But these are not the stodgy standards of pre-Silver Palate American kitchens. The classics get updated with tweaks of contemporary flavors–Asian Beef Soup is a fragrant simmer with star anise, oatmeal cookies are spiked with tart dried cranberries.

And there’s something here for any time of day from Early Morning Muffins studded with raspberries to Oven Braised Short Ribs with Fennel worthy of a dinner party.

Part of the comfort of these recipes comes from their reliability and ease. The recipe doesn’t have to be the most amazing macaroni and cheese ever, with imported pasta and artisanal cheese, it just has to be easy to cook, reasonably tasty, and fully gooey. These are not demanding dishes to cook–after all an Apricot Almond Cherry Cobbler is supposed to be a little slumpy and Luxuriously Retro Beef Stroganoff is not a dish that requires a lot of arranging on the plate. And a Grilled Cheese Sandwich that looks a little drippy is bound to taste good.

The simple ingredients and simple cooking here are sure to lead to real comfort.

About Appetite for Books

read, cook, eat, repeat
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