Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Gourmet Meals in Crappy Little Kitchens

At some point we have all lived in a place that had a crappy little kitchen…maybe our first apartment or even those beloved dorm rooms. And maybe we still don’t even have the kitchen we really want. Chef Jennifer Schaertl believes that “cooking in a crappy little kitchen builds character and personality – two attributes of downright delicious gourmet meals.” So she has taken her own experiences and created her debut cookbook, Gourmet Meals in Crappy Little Kitchens (HCI Books; April 2010; Trade paperback/$18.95; ISBN-10:0-7573-1365-5). Jennifer shows us how to love our kitchens and create fun and exciting gourmet meals in them.

I know what you’re thinking….Gourmet Meals in Crappy Little Kitchens (CLK), isn’t that an oxymoron? Not according to Jennifer. With her help, home cooks can make their crappy little kitchens the centerpiece for delicious food and a place to call home. Jennifer begins the book with The Art of Cooking in Your Crappy Little Kitchen, covering topics such as CLK Basics; It’s Not What You Have, It’s How You Use It; The CLK Pantry; and Preventing Crappy Little Casualties. Recipes cover “A”-Game Appetizers, Toss Everything but These Salads, Dignified One-Pot Creations, Saucy Sauces, and Desserts to Die For.

The fun Jennifer had creating all of these recipes in her own crappy little kitchen shows through in every page. She makes home-cooking an adventure with recipes such as: Wish I Was a Little Bisque Taller; When the Saints Come Marchin’ in Gumbo, Shuttupahyourface Bruschetta; Wassup! Wasabi Chicken Salad; Barbequeless Barbequed Salmon; Rum-Infused, Carmelized Pork Chops; Leaning Tower of Tofu Lasagna Stacks; Rock-‘n’-Roasted Vegetables; They Call Me Mellow Yellow Sauce; Plum Champagne Granita; and Coconut Poached Pears with Burgundy Sauce.

As Jennifer likes to say…”just because you cook in a crappy little kitchen does not justify a crappy meal!”
Gourmet Meals in Crappy Little Kitchens offers practical hints and tips that help make the most of any crappy little kitchen. After all, if you can’t have the kitchen you want, this book shows how to love the kitchen you have. You can learn more about Jennifer on her website, www.CrappyLittleKitchens.com.

Remember, it’s not what you have; it’s how you use it!

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