This review is long overdue, as I’ve tried MANY more than 20 recipes from this cookbook! This has now actually become one of my favorite cookbooks to turn to when entertaining a crowd.
The recipes couldn’t be easier to understand and follow; Ree Drummond, the author/chef, literally has pictures for every single step to make sure no one gets lost or confused while cooking. It’s as detailed as “toss in the brown sugar…” (picture of brown sugar being added) “…and the butter…” (picture of butter being added) “…and the salt” (picture of salt being added).
And to make it even easier, since cooking from this book usually requires a lot of time to make multiple dishes for each holiday, she has a page before each section with a list of what you can prepare in advance! This page is probably my favorite for every section; I love pre-planning and getting as much done beforehand so that I can enjoy time with my guests on the day of.
Costs for ingredients in this book tend to be on the higher side, but since these recipes are meant for holidays I don’t have too big of a concern here. Would it be nice if they were cheaper? Absolutely! But if you’re ever going to splurge on a meal, the holidays would be the time!
You may need some special equipment for recipes in this book, such as a candy/fry thermometer and electric mixer. You can probably get by without the electric mixer if you’re willing to put in some extra time and muscle, but it would be difficult to get around the thermometer for some of these since they require a specific temperature in order to not ruin the consistency or over/under cook the food.
There is also a time commitment for most of these, but as mentioned earlier she does provide suggestions on where you can prepare in advance to lighten your load later on.
I really do love this cookbook! So far I’ve tried a whopping 34 recipes over 7 holidays/events, and these 19 are my favorite so far (though many were very, very close):
The Big Game
- Huevos in the Heart
- Chocolate Valentine Cookies
- Bacon-Wrapped Filet
- Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes
- Cheddar-Bacon Wedge Salad
- Sticky Cherry Cake
Cinco de Mayo
Fourth of July