Magazines share their recipes


April 11, 2007|By Kate Shatzkin | Kate Shatzkin,Sun reporter

Everyday Food: Great Food Fast

From the Kitchens of Martha Stewart Living

Fine Cooking Annual

Edited by Martha Holmberg and Pam Hoenig

The Taunton Press / 2007 / $34.95

We love Fine Cooking; really, we do. We look forward every month to perusing its sensible-yet-elegant recipes, handy tips and techniques. The photos always make us hungry. So why weren't we wowed by this first collection of more than 200 recipes from the magazine?

For one thing, the type is larger. Normally, that's good for readability. But it made some of the recipes seem dauntingly long. The editors are going for precision - one of Fine Cooking's hallmarks - but when the directions for should-be-simple dishes like a spinach salad or a platter of crudites and dip take up nearly a page, they look like more trouble than they're worth.

Many of the ingredient combinations, while tasty-sounding, seemed a bit predictable. We also were disappointed that the nutritional analyses, usually printed at the back of each issue of the magazine, didn't make it to the book.

This is a fine book, though, for the cook who wants to get better at the fundamentals. There are guides, with clear, color photography, on everything from preserving fresh herbs to making caramel sauce. Potato lovers will appreciate the chapter devoted just to tubers. The Risotto With Peas and Porcini we made delivered complex, earthy flavor with an interesting mixture of ingredients.

Pan-Fried Shrimp With Green Curry Cashew Sauce

Serves 4

1 slice ( 1/4 -inch thick) peeled fresh ginger

3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons roasted unsalted cashews (divided use)

1/2 cup plain low-fat yogurt

1/4 cup packed cilantro leaves

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 teaspoon curry powder

coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 1/2 pounds peeled and deveined large shrimp

2 tablespoons olive oil (divided use)

In a food processor, pulse the ginger until finely chopped. Add the 3/4 cup cashews; process until smooth, 2 to 3 minutes.

Add the yogurt, cilantro leaves, brown sugar and curry powder; season with salt. Process until incorporated, 1 to 2 minutes, scraping down the sides as needed. Transfer to a serving bowl; sprinkle with the remaining cashews.

Season the shrimp with salt and pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add half the shrimp; cook until opaque throughout, 2 to 3 minutes. Repeat with the remaining tablespoon oil and remaining shrimp. Serve the shrimp with the sauce.

From "Great Food Fast"

Per serving: 446 calories, 41 grams protein, 24 grams fat, 5 grams saturated fat, 17 grams carbohydrate, 1 gram fiber, 261 milligrams cholesterol, 280 milligrams sodium

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