By Mark Haskell
For a chef like myself, starting out in the playing 6eld known as the kitchen and cooking, look no further than using Molly Baz’s “Cook This Book: Techniques That Teach and Recipes to Repeat” to make repeatable meals that will satiate many appetites.
“Cook This Book” is not exactly a traditional story that may be set in a fantasy world or have many characters with world-altering abilities. This book is a story about food, how to prepare it, and how to create mouthwatering recipes that can be repeated as many times as one wants. In regards to recipes to repeat, this cookbook has the novel idea of including QR codes to look at various techniques and methods to utilize in the kitchen.
A few examples of techniques mentioned in full detail on these QR codes when scanned are “Chop An Onion,” “De-lobe A Pepper,” “Carve A Chicken Breast,” “Carve A Chicken,” among other informative culinary techniques.
Another aspect that I find to be very interesting and also very adorable is a little biography about Molly Baz’s dog. Her dog is a dachshund named Tuna, which Baz calls a weenie dog. When one scans the QR code that says “Meet Tuna,” a Vimeo video about the dog pops up.
These QR codes are used to bring visual refreshers to foundational culinary techniques.This book is very interactive with the use of QR codes and before the first recipe, there is a page called The Anatomy of a “Cook This Book” Recipe. It contains some information before you begin to cook.
The first item is, of course, the recipe title. The second item is the ingredient list, where the recipe ingredients are categorized by the grocery store department, which translates to where these ingredients live in your kitchen.
The third item is called the headnote. A headnote is a little tidbit of information that benefits the chef, and it may be an anecdotal story, thought or reflection to keep the reader entertained. The fourth item is called the process. The process is where the recipe procedures are de6ned in chronological order.
The fifth item is the QR code, an interactive video to freshen up on various skills. The sixth and final item is a footnote, where Baz provides extra information along the way.
What I particularly enjoy about this cookbook are the possibilities of recipes to create. Baz has made recipes categorized as Chicken Licken, Beef, Pork and Lamb, Seafood, Eggs, Noods, Grains and Legumes, Salading, So. Many. Veggies, Soup, Snack Attack, and Baking.
In these recipes, there are sections where the ingredients are categorized into Pantry items, Produce items and Dairy items. I have made a few recipes from Baz’s book and there are other recipes that I am very tempted to try and make for family and friends.
The recipes I had the pleasure to create for my family were the Sweetie P’s with Peanut-Chile Salsa, and Marinated Lentils with Lotsa Basil. They are designated as “family favorites” as I have made them many more times. These dishes get better each and every time I produce them.
To give a rating for this cookbook, there are many factors to take into consideration such as the variety of recipes, the ability to make any changes in whichever ingredients you think will enhance the recipes flavors, and the ability to have fun in the kitchen.
The basics, but better