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A Toast to "How to Roast"

obillo | Dec 30, 201711:43 AM

Maybe I’m jumping the gun here, because the official on-sale date is March 27, although this title, “How to Roast Everything,” is already available online. Be that as it may, it’s a pretty impressive tome—400+ pages, four-color photos throughout, generous page size (9”x10”), legible typography (none of that sans-serif nonsense). You should expect as much from America’s Test Kitchen, which despite its down-home, rural expression on TV is actually a sophisticated and well-financed money-maker in the heart of Boston. The object of the book is to be “the last word,” and it stands a good chance of making good that claim, because it covers roasting for everyone, encouraging the beginner and rewarding the experienced. There are, of course, recipes by the long ton, but there are also the very helpful “All About” chapters, which are reminiscent of the “Abouts” in the original “Joy of Cooking” but which here are grouped together and more focused I giving the lowdown on beef, pork, chicken etc.—exactly what the beginning cook needs (veterans will pick up some tips too). Of course there’s extensive details of useful cookware, lots of sauces, a bucket list of the ten “essential roasts,” and metric conversion guides, important in these days when we can get so many recipes from the internet. In short, what we have here is a distillation of knowledge drawn from a decade of “Cook’s Country,” 18 years of “America’s Test Kitchen” and more than a quarter-century of “Cook’s Illustrated.” It comes to us at the perfect time too—we can roast all winter!—Bill Marsano has cooked for family and friends three decades with no fatalities. Not so far, anyway.

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