30 November 2019

Weekend Cooking: The Essential Air Fryer Cookbook by Bruce Weinstein and Mark Scarbrough

Review of The Essential Air Fryer Cookbook by Bruce Weinstein and Mark ScarbroughIf you're in the United States, happy Thanksgiving weekend, and I'm guessing that yet more food is the last thing on your mind. Instead you're wondering what to do with all those leftovers.

On the other hand, no matter where you live, it's now officially the holiday season. Christmas is in 26 days, Hanukkah in 23 days, and Kwanzaa in 27 days. Yikes! Please don't let me know that you've already decorated, have addressed your holiday cards, and have finished shopping. I couldn't handle it.

One of my own early holiday gifts this year was being accepted into the Voracious Ambassadors Program. Voracious is the food and cooking imprint from Little, Brown, which is part of the Hachette Book Group. I can't tell you how much I'm looking forward to sharing terrific Voracious cookbooks with you over the coming year. Thank you, Voracious!

As with any books I receive for review, whether part of a formal program or because I'm a blogger and freelancer, you can always count on my honest thoughts. That said, you should know that I'm picky about who I collaborate with, and I say yes to only those companies I know will be a good match for me.

Do you own an air fryer? I don't, but I've thought about whether one would be a good addition to my kitchen. I've been hesitant because we're not big fans of fried food (except for really good french fries). However, now that I've looked through Bruce Weinstein and Mark Scarbrough's newest cookbook, The Essential Air Fryer Cookbook (Voracious, Nov. 19), I may be changing my mind.

I had no idea that you could make "regular" food in an air fryer or that you could even use one to bake a cake. Why would I care about using something besides my oven for cake? Think August without air-conditioning . . . Yeah. I'm pretty much never turning on my big oven during the dog days of summer.

I was surprised to find that besides cakes, cookies, and fruit crisps, you could use the appliance for not only meat, fish, and vegetarian main dishes but also for side dishes, appetizers, and even sandwiches. The Essential Air Fryer Cookbook contains (as the cover indicates) more than 300 air fryer recipes.

Before I get into the specifics of the cookbook, I want to say a few words about Weinstein and Scarbrough. They have been nominated for a James Beard Award and write for Cooking Light, America's Test Kitchen, and Weight Watchers. This means they not only know what they're talking about but they also understand that many of us want recipes that fit in a healthy lifestyle. If you want to know more about them, visit the Bruce and Mark website (where you'll also find some recipes).

Now for more on The Essential Air Fryer Cookbook. Here are some of the many features I love about this cookbook:
  • Each recipe is already scaled to fit the three popular sizes of air fryers, so you don't have to do the math.
  • Almost every recipe comes with tips for how to serve the food you just made in the appliance.
  • Each recipe is tagged by skill level, vegetarian, gluten free, and number of ingredients.
  • The recipes sound appealing, include a range of flavors, and have general appeal.
  • The beginning of the cookbook contains important tips and tricks for those who are new to the air fryer world (thank you!).
Although I couldn't try any of the dishes, I am very impressed with the layout of the recipes, the easy step-by-step directions, the newbie guidance, and the serving suggestions.

Recommendation: If you are new to the air fryer world, Bruce Weinstein and Mark Scarbrough's The Essential Air Fryer Cookbook looks like the perfect place to start learning. If you receive an air fryer for the holidays, buy this book. If you are giving an air fryer as a gift, include this book in the package. If you have no idea what an air fryer can do, then take a look at the range of delicious-sounding recipes in The Essential Air Fryer Cookbook, and you might be surprised.

Please let me know in the comments if you have an air fryer and if you're glad you bought one. Or if you don't own an air fryer, let me know if you're thinking of buying one.

Here's a video of one of Weinstein and Scarbrough's recipes:

Weekend Cooking hosted by www.BethFishReads.comWeekend Cooking is open to anyone who has any kind of food-related post to share: Book reviews (novel, nonfiction), cookbook reviews, movie reviews, recipes, random thoughts, gadgets, quotations, photographs, restaurant reviews, travel information, or fun food facts. If your post is even vaguely foodie, feel free to grab the button and link up anytime over the weekend. You do not have to post on the weekend. Please link to your specific post, not your blog's home page.

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rhapsodyinbooks 11/30/19, 6:46 AM  

I had no idea one could use an air fryer for so much! Thanks for the info, and congratulations on being selected into the Voracious Ambassadors Program!

Mae Travels 11/30/19, 7:06 AM  

The air fryer has somehow never captured my imagination -- which means it's not going to capture the valuable counter or pantry space that would be needed to incorporate it into my kitchen. Quite a few bloggers have written about their successes (or not) with the air fryer and I haven't been very convinced of its merits: which they seem to conclude don't not EXACTLY include frying.

Good luck with all the upcoming holiday prep!

best... mae at maefood.blogspot.com

GypsyPlate 11/30/19, 7:29 AM  

I have still not tried air frying. It looks intriguing, maybe soon!

Jackie McGuinness 11/30/19, 9:13 AM  

We broke down last year and bought a deep fryer, only so we could do our own chicken wings and fries. It comes out about once a month for a Saturday dinner.

I just don't need or want another piece of equipment in my kitchen. I am happy to use my stove/oven for most things. I also have a slow cooker and breadmaker.

bermudaonion 11/30/19, 9:28 AM  

Vance has an air fryer on his Christmas wish list and we're thinking of buying one for him. I just might grab this cookbook for him as well.

jama 11/30/19, 10:30 AM  

I'm with Mae -- I don't see myself acquiring an air fryer -- just not enough room on the counter (or in the pantry closet) to store a stand alone appliance. That said, it was interesting learning more about what air fryers can do! I look forward to reading more of your reviews via the Voracious program. :)

Deb in Hawaii 11/30/19, 12:15 PM  

I have friends who love their air fryers and make some delicious looking food. I am thinking this cookbook will be a good gift for them! Congratulation on the Voracious Ambassadors Program. I don't know how you keep up with it all! ;-)

Nan 11/30/19, 1:44 PM  

You read my mind!! I am thinking of writing about my NEW air fryer!

Melynda@Scratch Made Food! 11/30/19, 2:13 PM  

I am pretty sure I need to read this book, we have a countertop model (as well as the little slide in basket type) for home and a smaller one for the RV. And I must say, I am still needing to learn more about it to get the full benefit of the machine. But I will say, what I have made, has been quite good.

Vicki 11/30/19, 2:59 PM  

I've been wanting to get an air fryer so a few days ago I bought this one. Now I think I need this cookbook :)

Abigail Pearson 11/30/19, 3:47 PM  

An interesting idea, seems like just one more thing to keep in my kitchen though and I'm running out of room! Lol

sherry fundin 12/2/19, 2:50 PM  

sounds interesting. bake a cake? in this day and age...why not? lol
sherry @ fundinmental

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