The Modern Proper: Simple Dinners for Every Day

S. & S. Apr. 2022. 304p. ISBN 9781982177669. $32. COOKING
Erickson and Mortimer have long run a successful food blog (The Modern Proper) that offers ways to update and reimagine classic Western European cuisine. Their new cookbook is a reflection of their blog, and several recipes appear in both. The first half of the cookbook includes an account of the authors’ creation of their blog, followed by their suggestions for essential ingredients to keep permanently stocked, including favorite sauces (homemade or store-bought) and basic and special spices they use in several of the recipes that follow. Recipes for sauces and seasoning mixes are grouped at the end of the book but are referred to throughout. Chapters follow in logical order, beginning with basic egg recipes, followed by “meatless” recipes and other main dishes. Several of the entrée recipes are accompanied by menu suggestions or recipes for side dishes. Color photographs accompany most recipes and add context.
VERDICT Erickson and Mortimer’s cookbook terrifically updates traditional Western European cuisine, as well as copying and improving on favorite restaurant dishes. This wide-ranging collection will appeal to basic and experienced cooks.
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