The Kitchen Counter Cooking School: How a Few Simple Lessons Transformed Nine Culinary Novices into Fearless Home Co oks Hardcover – Sep 29 2011
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"This could be the most important book you'll ever read."
--Morgan Spurlock, Super Size Me
“…[A] terrific, inspiring book…”
-People (A People Pick, 4 stars)
"If you are going to read one book to change your diet and your life, The Kitchen Counter Cooking School is it."
"Kathleen entered the kitchens of strangers and took the time to understand how they think about food before changing their cooking forever."
--Amanda Hesser, Food 52, The Essential New York Times Cookbook
“A life-changing book--entertaining, inspiring, and deeply educational."
--Erica Bauermeister, The School for Essential Ingredients
"A funny, thoroughly engrossing book...get ready to be inspired--and to eat well along the way." --Molly Wizenberg, Orangette.com, A Homemade Life
"An engaging...book on the joys of home cooking and the teaching thereof."
-The Wall Street Journal
"The author''s humble approach is inviting and shows why her students were enthusiastic."
-Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)
"Flinn guides you patiently in the kitchen like the mom you always wish you''d had to learn to cook from...the women gained confidence under Flinn''s wonderfully encouraging tutelage, and fearlessly faced their kitchens and grocery stores with useful knowledge."
"Flinn winningly offers inspiration to anyone who cares about cooking but lacks basic tools and skills."
"An amiable companion to cookbook stalwarts such as Mark Bittman''s How To Cook Everything, Pam Anderson''s How To Cook Without a Book, and Michael Ruhlman''s Ratio, this title provides encouragement where the others offer direction. A mash-up of inspiration and reference, it will appeal to readers who enjoy a story with their instruction."
— The Kitchen Counter Cooking School
About the Author
Kathleen Flinn has been a writer and journalist for nearly twenty years. Her work has appeared in the Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times, USA Weekend, Men’s Fitness and many other publications. She is a proud member of the International Association of Culinary Professionals, the American Society of Journalists and Authors, and the Author’s Guild. She divides her time between Seattle and southwest Florida.
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Top Customer Reviews
But what to do about this trend? When Flinn happened upon an episode of TV's "What Not to Wear," she decided to adapt the premise and recruit a group of struggling home cooks, observe their kitchens and meal preparations, offer hands-on instruction and coaching and re-observe. This book documents her project and teaches many valuable lessons: how to stock a pantry; how to hold and use a knife; how to taste, including comparative tastings and suggested seasonings; how to bake simple bread and prepare eggs, whole chickens, fish and meats. Flinn writes fluently and accessibly, employing both humour and helpful instructions.
Though a couple of the book's chapters seem self-indulgent and irrelevant (like when she describes a teaching stint on a cruise ship), Flinn proves a supportive, entertaining and informative teacher. Ultimately, she inspires a respect for food, the true starting point to healthier living.
For The Kitchen Counter Cooking School project, author Kathleen Flinn recruited nine volunteers who needed help. Each had something that needed improvement - they were cooking unhealthy food, buying take-out and resorting to what they thought would be the fastest and most convenient method of food preparation. All the volunteers were women and I could relate to all of them to some degree.
At the start of the book, the author introduces each volunteer by describing a visit to their homes and in particular their kitchens. There were issues with outdated food, too much food as well as content. Food labels were looked at, cooking methods discussed and even storage issues confronted. Each woman was surprised when a spotlight was pointed at their fridge and cupboards. Sometimes it takes an outsider to say, yep, storing 15 boxes of pre-made pasta dinners at this cost doesn't make sense when you can make something yourself for a fraction of the price, is much healthier and doesn't take nearly as much time as you'd think if you know what you're doing. The author rented a kitchen and once a week the volunteers learned how to do exactly that.
The book is divided into parts and each describes a food product or group and how best to prepare it. The volunteers were given the tools and instructions and were encouraged to experiment. Their delight in discovering that they could produce healthy and attractive dishes was evident. I like how the self-esteem of a person can be raised just by learning a method of cooking they previously thought had been impossible to master.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
I love Kathleen Flinn's work ... this was no disappointment --- read it at the library and liked it enough to buy it!Published 7 months ago by JanetPLondon
Really enjoyed this book by Kathleen Flynn- it helped me to organize my own thoughts for 'cooking school', and was inspiring to hear about people becoming confident because of well... Read morePublished on May 10 2014 by Elizabeth Van Sickle
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