Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The Complete 15-Minute Gourmet: Book Review

Yesterday evening I found myself with 3+ hours to kill while my 6 year-old was at the dress rehearsal for her dance recital; too much time to wait in the car and too little time to travel very far away from the theater or go home. But I was just down the street from The Gateway, a beautifully designed, 2-story outdoor mall in Salt Lake City.

My toddler and I visited the amazing and exciting central water feature, ate outrageously over-priced ice cream at the Ben & Jerry's store, shopped at Sur la Table (sigh...happy day...), and went to Barnes and Noble. The book store is always a good place to burn some time, even for a toddler, and I wanted to pick up a copy of The Complete 15-Minute Gourmet, by Paulette Mitchell. I first heard about Paulettte's book on a blog called Amanda's Cookin'. She made the recipe for Grilled Chicken Salad with Herbed Tomato Vinaigrette and had rave things to say about the recipe and the book. And the picture she posted was gorgeous!

I am very, very picky about the cookbooks I buy. I'm always amazed at people who have huge cookbook collections because I don't find many I want to buy. I want lots of pictures, and I want recipes that have real, fresh ingredients, and aren't intimidating for average folks.

Encouraged by Amanda's success with the book, I thumbed through the pages while my toddler sat in her stroller enjoying her book about summer (what better book for a 2 year-old than one with pictures of kids eating ice cream and watermelon, swinging, and swimming with fish and their dog?) I knew within moments I would be making a purchase (the cookbook and the summer book).

With the recipes in The Complete 15-Minute Gourmet, Paulette proves what I've believed for a long time: good, fresh food doesn't have to be hard to make or take a long time to make. Paulette uses real, fresh ingredients that you just can't go wrong with. I haven't tried anything yet, and since I've got 2 days and a wake-up until moving day, it will be Subway and Wendy's for a while. But I've got a list of recipes to try....things like:
  • Warm Chicken Salad with Peaches and Blueberries
  • Pesto Chicken Salad with Red Grapes
  • Curried Winter Squash Soup
  • Seared Scallops with Lemon Pepper Fettuccine
  • Salmon and Noodles with Pesto Cream Sauce
  • Pork Sausage Frittata

I can't possibly list them all here because it would take forever. Let's just say I won't be without new, great recipes to try for a long time. Thanks Paulette, and thanks Amanda for blogging about her great book!


  1. Oh can't wait to see what you try! I still have two more I want to blog about. One of them is a frittata and the other is a pesto dish. They were both winners! I took my book with me to my camper a couple of weeks ago and accidentally left it there! RATS! it'll probably be a few weeks before I get up there again :( UGH

  2. Sounds like a fun afternoon! I danced when I was little and I remember my mom used to pick me up from long rehearsals with bags of stuff that she had bought while trying to kill time. :) I can't wait to see the chicken salad with blueberries and peaches - sounds so good! Good-luck with the move!!

  3. Amanda: BUMMER about the book! The weeks will go by fast, though, and you'll be able to retrieve it from your camper (jealous, btw, about the camper...) I need to get moved and my kitchen put together fast so I can try some of the great stuff in the book...

    Culinary Wannabe: It ended up being a fun afternoon, even with the rain (left that part out of the post) Outside malls and rain don't work so well :) But my 2 year-old thought the rain was great...Believe me I'm itching to start trying some of the recipes. It's a terrible thing to have to wait...And thanks for the good wishes. Moves always have some sort of hiccup, don't they? :)


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