Ready, Set, Cook: How To Make Good Food with What’s on Hand (No Fancy Skills, Fancy Equipment, or Fancy Budget Required)

S. & S. Nov. 2021. 336p. ISBN 9781982147266. $30. COOKING
Perry’s book of standard American recipes is perfectly designed to help the beginning cook learn the basics. Starting with setting up a pantry, refrigerator, and freezer, Perry guides a first-time cook through the steps of outfitting a kitchen before covering the basics of cooking. The beginner foodie gets a critical foundation from Perry’s information about choosing ingredients, how ingredients should be stored, and how long ingredients last if stored properly. The book’s foundation is its instructions for preparing soups, sauces, and pie dough; safely storing them in the refrigerator or freezer; and adapting these basic recipes to full meals. Meals are then organized into familiar categories, and the recipes in the last half of the book rely upon the sauces, doughs, and spice mixes that were introduced in the first half.
VERDICT While the book lacks instructions for measurement conversion, Perry’s approachable guidance and beautiful photographs offer enough basic info to be of interest to beginner cooks.
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