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Rachael Ray's Big Orange Book: Her Biggest Ever Collection of All-New 30-Minute Meals Plus Kosher Meals, Meals for One, Veggie Dinners, Holiday Favorites, and Much More! [Paperback]

Rachael Ray
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Nov. 4 2008
In the 10 years since she served up her first 30-minute meal—and thousands of delectable dinners later— Rachael Ray has learned just about all there is to know about getting a great tasting meal on the table in a hurry, whether it is one of her patented 30-minute miracles or something just a tad more involved for a special gathering. Rachael’s Big Orange Book is the ultimate resource for busy cooks. Need kitchen inspiration? It’s all here and it’s all new—and bigger than ever!

Just one for dinner tonight? Forget the cold cereal. Rach has a chapter of recipes that make dining on your own a thoroughly civilized occasion, with great meals that won’t leave you with a fridge full of leftovers. Vegetarians on the guest list? No problem! Choose from dozens of meat-free meals that are every bit as satisfying as your tried-and-true standards and savory enough to please the carnivores in your crowd. Observing a Kosher menu? Check out the selection of menus just for Kosher cooks, all ready in less than, you guessed it, 30 minutes. There's even a mother lode of burger recipes for fans of the bun—so many options you could make a different burger every day for a full month!

In addition to her latest 30-minute creations, Rachael has put together an array of menus and recipes for easy entertaining, from quick snacks to serve for game night and easy hors d’oeuvres, to soup-to-nuts menus for her favorite holidays and special occasions. Whip up a pasta buffet for a special mom on Mother’s Day, please a crowd with a super-simple Oscar party menu, and give thanks for not one but four fantastic menus that keep holiday stress to a minimum by getting you out of the kitchen in record time.

Best of all, these recipes have all the huge flavors you’ve come to expect from Rachael, with something to please every taste—and every food budget. You’ll even find the treasured family recipes that Rachael and her husband, John, have enjoyed for years; see if they don’t become beloved family traditions in your home as well. Whether this is your first introduction to cooking the 30-minute way or you are a long-time convert, you’ll find irresistible new recipes here to make the most of every second you spend in the kitchen.

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Review

"Real food for real people.This one has something for everyone."
—Associated Press

About the Author

RACHAEL RAY is a best-selling author and the host of Food Network’s popular 30-Minute Meals and Tasty Travels as well as her daytime syndicated show, Rachael Ray. She is also the founder of Yum-o!, a charitable foundation dedicated to helping parents and children develop a healthy relationship with food. This is her fourteenth cookbook.

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Most helpful customer reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quintessential Rachael Nov. 7 2008
Format:Paperback
If you watch Ray's show or have other cookbooks by the author, and you looked through Rachael Ray's Big Orange Book without glancing at the cover, you would immediately know it was hers. To begin with, it's loaded with her unique language--EVOO (extra virgin olive oil,) "sammies" (sandwiches,) and more.

The largest section of the book is comprised of Ray's famous 30 minute meals. This section is broken down to soups & sammies, pasta, chicken, beef, ham & pork and fish.

Ever since my husband got back from a business trip in California and told me about a delicious meal of fish tacos, I've been experimenting. So, when I saw "My-oh-mahi tacos," I had to try them. They were delicious! The best part was that the recipe has you first wrap the filling with a corn tortilla, then a flour one. I think the corn tortillas taste and texture are great, but I hate how they always break, spilling taco contents everywhere. With the flour tortilla wrapped around it, everyone plays nice and stays inside.

There is a vegetarian chapter. Now, I assume if you are a vegetarian, you would not buy this book for the one chapter. However, be warned if you make Winter Greens Pasta for a vegetarian eater--the recipe calls for ANCHOVIES! Anchovies are FISH--therefore, this is not strictly a vegetarian dish.

Other chapters include kosher, family recipes, entree burgers, starters and snacks, holiday menus and dishes that take more than 30 minutes to prepare.

I also made Broken Florentine Lasagna Bake, because I love swiss char and am always looking for new ways to prepare it. This was very good and a very healthy meal.

Recommend.

By the author of the award winning book, HARMONIOUS ENVIRONMENT: BEAUTIFY, DETOXIFY & ENERGIZE YOUR LIFE, YOUR HOME & YOUR PLANET.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lots of Zesty Variety Jan. 26 2009
By Donald Mitchell #1 HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
Big Orange Book is an excellent resource for those who want a lot of tasty thirty-minute recipes, a la Rachael Ray. Even more than usual, she has provided spicy and interesting tastes.

Why is called a Big Orange Book? Ms. Ray says that she likes the color.

Here's the Table of Contents so you can see the distribution of subjects:

1. 30-Minute Meals (Often the recipes are grouped to make interesting meals) Page 11
2. Entree Burgers Page 113
3. Vegetarian Meals Page 139
4. Kosher Meals Page 171
5. Meals for One Page 197
6. A Little More than 30 Minutes . . . But Worth It Page 222
7. From My Family to Yours (Family Recipes Shared) Page 247
8. Starters and Snacks Page 269
9. Holiday Menus Page 301

As you can see the smaller sections are like appetizers on those subjects rather than entrees. But they will give you some nice variety. If you keep a kosher kitchen, this book won't give you what you need to feed your family. It's a little strange to find kosher recipes in a book that features so many pork-based dishes.

If you know someone who is just starting out with cooking and who likes Rachael Ray, this is probably the right book to give as a gift for that person's first cookbook by the nonstop chef.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  92 reviews
48 of 48 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fine cookbook Nov. 10 2008
By Steven A. Peterson - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Why the title? Ray herself says (Page 8): "It's orange simply because orange is my favorite color." Simple enough! This has the normal complement of 30 minute meals. However, there are some features to this volume that attracted me to order it: vegetarian meals, holiday menus, some recipes longer than 30 minutes (breaking out of one's mold is a plus to me), Kosher meals. The vegetarian is especially important for me now, since my family is asking me to develop some more vegetarian meals (more on this below). The recipes here are doable by amateur/wannabe chefs. From an earlier cookbook of hers, I found that I could make some tasty meals without a lot of heart palpitations.

This cookbook is well over 300 pages long, so I don't aim to give a comprehensive detailed review (would take too many words). What I'd like to do here is focus on a few recipes and use these as examples of what this cookbook provides. The contents:

30-minute meals
Entree burgers
Vegetarian meals
Kosher meals
Meals for one
A little more than 30 minutes--but worth it
From my family to yours
Starters and snacks
Holiday menus

30-minute meals: "That's Shallota Flavor Spaghetti" (ugh for the bad pun!). A meatless pasta dish (consistent with my family's wishes). Extra virgin olive oil (what Ray calls EVOO), butter, garlic, shallots, salt and pepper, spaghetti (she calls for wheat, but that would not be necessary), parsley, and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. Very simple to make. I have not yet tried this, but looking at the recipe, this is a "can't miss" recipe.

"Roasted Pork Tenderloins with Escalloped Apples." My family wants me to lay off pork tenderloin. But this recipe might change their minds! Lemon zest, Montreal steak seasoning, thyme, EVOO, pork tenderloins, butter, apples, salt, flour, lemon juice, and sugar. Another pretty straightforward recipe, and one that I hope can get my family to give pork tenderloin another chance!

The section on burgers is pretty cool. Beside the standard beef-based recipes, there are turkey burgers and salmon burgers, etc. Some imaginative recipes here.

As mentioned before, I have been empowered to develop more vegetarian recipes. One of those mentioned here is on next week's schedule of menus--"Popeye Risotto with Beefy Balsamic Mushrooms." Portabella mushrooms are at the heart of this recipe, along with balsamic vinegar. Another that is easy to make and, by the description, a can't miss dish (I don't need to cook something to know that the recipe will work)--"Jaw-Droppingly Delicious Asparagus Penne." Very tempting and a sure winner. Asparagus, penne pasta (whole wheat), EVOO, garlic, flour, vegetable stock, half-and-half, Dijon mustard, lemon zest, pepper, lemon, and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. As Ray would say, "Yum-O."

I cook a lot of chicken dishes (lower cholesterol and fat). Here's a goodie. "Chicken cutlets and spaghetti with pepper and onions." Some pasta dishes that take more than 30 minutes. . . . "Elsa's Baked Ziti." And "Basil Cream Sauce with Pasta."

So, this is a fine cookbook, accessible to ordinary folks who want to try some different dishes. I am very much looking forward to trying out some of the recipes already mentioned. As cookbooks go, this is a nice addition to the literature.
31 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars At Least You Can Read This One! Nov. 23 2008
By kiwanissandy - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I like that this cookbook is actually one of hers that you can read. The print isn't orange on a blue background. And the pages in this cookbook are heavy quality instead of that recycled, matte stuff.

These recipes seem a little better than some of her past productions in that these recipes actually have ingredients that you can buy. The Golden Ice Cream Cakes were very cute and tasty and easily made with store bought ingredients. She put these in the Oscar Night Party section but these would be very cute birthday cakes.

I also liked the red, white and blue slaw and thought it very tasty with the bleu cheese crumbles added. I would have not thought of that on my own. The recipe for the German Cheese and Beer Fondue I had made before from the food network website but am glad it's in this cookbook. It's a very good cheese fondue.

The Thanksgiving meal suggestion was Turkey Sweet Potato Shepherd's Pie. It's something I will definitely make but after Thanksgiving using the leftovers. It calls for a banana so we'll see what twist that gives this dish. The butternut squash riscotto I had made from one of her other cookbooks so I see it's included here as well.

This is truly a big book. Over 350 pages...worth the money per recipe unlike her little books she put out a couple of Christmas' ago. The pictures are good quality though there are only a few.

This would make a great Christmas gift combined with one of her garbage bowls and Sutoku knife. What a cute under the tree gift. What I like about having the vegetarian section is that I don't think it's meant for vegetarians to purchase but for the meat eater who wants to eat less meat on occasion. We tried doing the "Meatless Monday's" where the meal was completely vegetarian but it didn't work out to every Monday, too many vegetarian recipes taste like "side dishes" and not "meals." But this way the hubby sees you cooking out of this book and he'll assume there's meat in the dish even though he can't necessarily see it. 'Cause we all know Rachael is the queen of meat eaters. LOL. So the family is happy and you've gotten them to eat a little healthier with no one the wiser.

The roasted garlic and tomato Ratatouille pasta dish was very good. I would recommend it for the company pot luck. Would be very tasty and still not rock your budget for the company dinner.

All in all a lot better than several of her last cookbooks. Sell those on Ebay and purchase this one. You won't be disappointed.
60 of 66 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quintessential Rachael Nov. 6 2008
By Norma Lehmeierhartie - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
If you watch Ray's show or have other cookbooks by the author, and you looked through Rachael Ray's Big Orange Book without glancing at the cover, you would immediately know it was hers. To begin with, it's loaded with her unique language--EVOO (extra virgin olive oil,) "sammies" (sandwiches,) and more.

The largest section of the book is comprised of Ray's famous 30 minute meals. This section is broken down to soups & sammies, pasta, chicken, beef, ham & pork and fish.

Ever since my husband got back from a business trip in California and told me about a delicious meal of fish tacos, I've been experimenting. So, when I saw "My-oh-mahi tacos," I had to try them. They were delicious! The best part was that the recipe has you first wrap the filling with a corn tortilla, then a flour one. I think the corn tortillas taste and texture are great, but I hate how they always break, spilling taco contents everywhere. With the flour tortilla wrapped around it, everyone plays nice and stays inside.

There is a vegetarian chapter. Now, I assume if you are a vegetarian, you would not buy this book for the one chapter. However, be warned if you make Winter Greens Pasta for a vegetarian eater--the recipe calls for ANCHOVIES! Anchovies are FISH--therefore, this is not strictly a vegetarian dish.

Other chapters include kosher, family recipes, entree burgers, starters and snacks, holiday menus and dishes that take more than 30 minutes to prepare.

I also made Broken Florentine Lasagna Bake, because I love swiss char and am always looking for new ways to prepare it. This was very good and a very healthy meal.

Recommend.

By the author of the award winning book, HARMONIOUS ENVIRONMENT: BEAUTIFY, DETOXIFY & ENERGIZE YOUR LIFE, YOUR HOME & YOUR PLANET.
46 of 58 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It's big. And it's orange. Nov. 13 2008
By Brian Connors - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
You know, it's sort of pointless to review this in some ways. It's Rachael Ray; you know what you're getting when you pick up the book. No more, no less. And that seems to be my main problem with this one.

Some celebrity chefs have made a point over their careers to do a grand summation of their work at least once; Julia Child's The Way to Cook, for example, or Jacques Pepin's Complete Techniques, or Anthony Bourdain's Les Halles Cookbook. Some, on the other hand, have kind of tripped through their careers providing occasional roundups of whatever they happen to be working on at the time; Emeril Lagasse, Jeff Smith, Martin Yan, and Giada De Laurentiis have all done this quite successfully. What bothers me here is that it seems like Ray is trying to split the difference here. One would think that a book advertising itself in Ray's signature color as her largest ever cookbook would in fact be in some way the definitive book on her 30-Minute Meals strategies. While it comes partway there, I'm inclined to think it's a half-baked effort at best. (And remember, Ray is not a baker to begin with.)

There's a few good things in here of course -- kosher meals, the complete menus from her Thanksgiving in 60 specials, vegetarian food -- but in the grand scheme of things Ray just isn't the sort of cook who is in a position to write what this book seems to want to be. Her food is okay; it certainly isn't inedible slop like her big convenience cooking rival Sandra Lee's. But once you've got her stopwatch-precise organization down pat, where, really, is there to go? This isn't a kitchen bible -- that simply isn't possible working in her style. It's not a how-to-cook book, really; she has nothing new to say about techniques or teaching style. In short, despite pretensions to something greater, it's just another Rachael Ray book.

Take it for what it's worth. It's yet another collection of quick recipes. Some may appeal to you, but a lot of them can be readily found on the Food Network website. Go to a bookstore, browse the book, decide whether it's got twenty dollars worth of recipes you need. If you can find enough to make it worth the purchase, more power to you. Otherwise, consider this: doesn't Rachael Ray have enough money and exposure already?
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best cookbook we own Jan. 30 2010
By D. Volz - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Hands down, this is the best cookbook my wife and I own (and we own at least 20 or so). Honestly, I always found Rachael Ray to be a bit annoying based on the few times I watched her show but, now that I've used her cookbook many times (and with outstanding results), I definitely have a lot more respect for her creativity and variety. Keep up the good work!
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