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If you have ever explored the cooking blogs, then I'm sure you've come across The Steamy Kitchen, the blog and website written by Jaden Hair. The tag line for Jaden's blog is "Fast, Fresh, and Simple," which is what most of us are looking for.
When I learned Jaden had written a cookbook, I knew I had to have it. As the subtitle for The Steamy Kitchen Cookbook proclaims, the recipes are indeed "simple enough for tonight's dinner." As one comes to expect from Tuttle Publishing, the book is absolutely beautifully put together: stunning photographs of every main dish, and chapters that explain all the ingredients, basic sauces, and spice mixtures.
One of the things I really love about The Steamy Kitchen Cookbook is the step-by-step photographs of special techniques, such as how to make a summer roll, how to shape dumplings for potstickers, and how to devein shrimp. Throughout you'll also find great tips for substituting ingredients, buying Asian vegetables, and determining cooking times.
Although Jaden emphasizes Asian flavors, many of the dishes are based on familiar standbys: Baked Crispy Chicken with Citrus Teriyaki Sauce, Korean BBQ-Style Burgers, Beer Steamed Shrimp with Garlic, and Hoisin, and Honey Glazed Baby Back Ribs. At the end of each recipe introduction, you'll find suggestions for accompanying dishes, which is great for cooks who are just learning about some of these flavors and ingredients.
I made the Shrimp Pad Thai (the dish shown on the book cover), and it was easy, fast, beautiful, and delicious. I also made Grilled Lamb Chops with Asian Pesto (yum!). Instead of sharing a recipe with you, I'm posting a short video of the Betty Crocker Test Kitchen trying out a steak recipe that you'll find on page 90 of Jaden's book.
Looks delicious and not at all difficult. Jaden's easygoing personality comes out in her writing and on her blog.
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Published by Tuttle Publishing, 2009
Source: Review (see review policy)
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