I'm already a subscriber to "Cook's Country" so I bought this book for my niece, along with a subscription to the magazine. I checked to make sure all of my favorite recipes from the 2011 magazine were included in this cookbook, and most of them are. Some of my favorites include:
Garlic knots--mince TEN garlic cloves and cook them in butter to make a dozen of the best-tasting garlic yeast rolls you'll ever eat. I made them for Thanksgiving and they didn't last until the next day, which averaged two rolls per person.
Make-ahead Meatloaf--this recipe makes two eight-inch loaves, and is a godsend for those nights when you just want to come home and pop something into the oven. The meat is an unusual combination of bratwurst (casings removed) and lean ground beef.
Eggplant Casserole--a great way to cook all of those eggplants from the garden, and this recipe eliminates the messy breading process.
Chocolate éclair cake--a simpler version of this recipe made with a box of instant vanilla pudding and Cool Whip was being passed around in my bridge group, but this recipe, although tricky to make, is also much tastier. The complicated testing process that the authors had to go through in order to come up with this recipe makes interesting reading, especially their failures: "But rather than a perky mousse, I had a runny pool that nearly dissolved the grahams."
This book is packed with tips on everything from making fish en papillote to cutting carrots into matchsticks (each step is photographed, with detailed text). The authors also suggest the best brand name products to use with their recipes, which is how I discovered Bull's-eye BBQ sauce.
If you know someone who enjoys the PBS show "America's Test Kitchen" or who loves to cook, this book would make a great gift. It includes recipes for starters and salads, soups and stews, vegetables and side dishes, breakfast and breads, pasta and pizza, meat, poultry, seafood, vegetarian entrées, and desserts--something for everyone.