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Making meals ‘homemade’

December 7, 2015
Amy Phelps , MOV Parent

Alana Chernila offers a cookbook of making more "from scratch" in "The Homemade Kitchen" (Clarkson Potter, $24.99.)

Chernila starts off her book with some basics - like how to cook an egg (in all the ways you can cook one), how to cook a vegetable, how to turn fruit into jam, how to pickle, how to make a salad, how to roast a chicken, how to make a piecrust and pie, how to make pasta, etc. This section is great for novice cooks as it really starts at the beginning and works its way up. She then starts in with the recipes.

"Feed Yourself" offers meals for one, which is a great thing and often times so hard to find.

"Put Your Hands in the Earth" gets readers down and dirty with their gardens with recipes like Pumpkin Puree while "Be Active" goes through recipes that require fermentation like Kefir Banana Cake and "Use Your Scraps" makes use of things that generally get wasted and thrown away (like leftovers in my kitchen.) like Panzanella.

In "Do Your Best, And Then Let Go" is a look at organic and local products with recipes like Roasted Salmon with Yummy Sauce.

"Be Helpful" is recipes for family and friends, like Dal with Radish Raita and "Do the Work" involves breads and kneading with recipes like Cinnamon Swirl Bread.

"Slow Down" involves snacks and sweets and things that take a bit more time, like One-Dish Chocolate Cake.

"Eat Outside" is picnic fare like Chicken Salad with Grapes, while "Invite People Over" is food for parties like Maki Rolls and "Don't Be Afraid of Food" tackles dessert.

I made Butternut Squash Pasta with Bacon, Sage and Brown Butter one evening. I had never prepared butternut squash before, so already it was going to be an adventure! The squash roasted in the oven with onion, while the bacon and pasta was prepared, as well as the brown butter sauce. The oldest likes any pasta, so this worked out, and the picky youngest even tried it. It plenty for the three of us!



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