Maureen: I thought it was good, but it felt really dated to me.
Kirstin: Did it?
Maureen: Some of the recipes felt like they were about 7 years old. There was lots of balsamic vinegar used, for example.
Kirsin: The book is old, right?
Maureen: That would explain it!
Kirstin: It’s 2011 book, but it doesn’t come across like that at all.
Maureen: What did you think?
Kirstin: The recipes I cooked were amazing, and they all worked. There were no issues with it at all. There were a lot of real winners here, including the roast chicken, chicken with the lemon and the balsamic roast beef. And I love that she asks How Easy is that? Well, super easy!
Kirstin: I would recommend the chicken with the lemon because it made the house smell amazing. A phenomenal recipe as well.
Maureen: I”m trying to remember what we liked, but what really stood out were the bangers and mash, which were a disaster.
Kirstin: What about the cakes?
M: They were delicious. The salmon was delicious. We loved the lamb chops. I’m still not sure if I’m going to keep the book, but we certainly ate well this month.
“Barefoot Contessa How Easy Was That?” by Ina Garten: Our Conclusion
- Overall Grade (A- F): A (Kirstin): The children really liked all of the recipes and they all worked. C (Maureen) I would have given it an American C+, but we’re sticking just to letter grades. It was a good cookbook, but not particularly inspiring.
- Best recipes: Chicken and Lemon. Balsamic Roast Beef. (Kirstin) Herb salmon. Greek lamb with yogurt mint sauce (Maureen)
- Grade for Photography (A-F): B/C She makes it all look like a Martha Stewart magazine. But I get that she’s trying to make it approachable. No food stylist for her!
- Any disasters? Kirstin: No. Maureen: Yes. We’re still having nightmares about the bangers and mash.
- Bookshelf or Charity Shop Donation? Kirstin: Bookshelf. If it hadn’t been a gift, it might have headed to the charity shop. Maureen: I haven’t made up my mind yet. I might send it home with my mom, so it can return to its American roots.