The Chopped Cookbook Review
The Chopped Cookbook Review
Gifted by: Clarkson Potter
Reviewed by Arielle Matlin, editor of AllFreeCopycatRecipes.com
Chopped is one of the most exciting and enthralling cooking shows on television right now. I know I can't stop watching once I start. Contestants receive baskets of ingredients that they must turn into complete dishes in short periods of time. Some of the dishes they come up with are absolutely ingenious. This Chopped cookbook teaches the reader how to think like a Chopped contestant and turn seemingly random ingredients into a complete dish.
I love how the book is formatted because it is both informative and filled with recipes you can actually make in your home kitchen. Throughout the cookbook you will find bright and vibrant pictures that literally make you mouth water. The book begins with a few pages of helpful guides. I find the pantry guide extremely helpful because it tells you just about every item a home cook should have on hand in their pantry. These are basic goods, but it is useful to have them laid out all in one place. The book puts strong emphasis on how each ingredient changes a recipe. Whether you need more acidity or a savory tone, this guide helps you decide what to add to a dish. The rest of the book is divided into chapters based on the main component of the recipes included. From pasta recipes to breakfast to dessert, this cookbook hits on them all.
The recipes are each laid out in a way that gives you more than just the standard ingredient list and directions. Many recipes are accompanied by extremely useful tidbits and facts about the ingredients and cooking methods. Interspersed throughout the book are basket recipes. On one side of the page is a basket of ingredients like you would see on the show and on the following page are multiple recipes that can be made using all the ingredients. I especially like how some recipes have alternative cooking methods, as well as different flavor combinations that can be swapped out. That's not all; throughout the book are helpful go-to guides you may find yourself using every day. These include ten different easy sauces and go-to dressing recipes you will use all the time.
The recipes found in the cookbook are not your standards. Most of the recipes are twists on classics you may not expect. Whether it is Mexican-style meatballs or Italian gyros, each recipe will wow you. I found I was truly inspired by the flavor combinations I saw in the book. This cookbook is for many different people. It is great for beginner cooks because it has helpful tips and helps you think about cooking in a totally different manner than you are used to. It is also a great book for those who cook for passion. Even seasoned cooks will find inspiration in the book. This makes a great gift for birthdays, housewarmings, and even a wedding shower!