The Dinner Plan: Simple Weeknight Recipes and Strategies for Every Schedule
By Kathy Brennan and Caroline Campion (Abrams; $29.99)
When these two authors, friends and former editors at Saveur magazine, published their debut cookbook, Keepers, it included, in what they admit was almost an afterthought, an index categorizing main courses by their usefulness to particular situations—for example, dishes cooked in one vessel or dishes you can stagger to suit a family’s schedule. Turns out readers wanted more of that. Aside from being tagged as featuring one of the aforementioned strategies, recipes in this follow-up may also be categorized as make-ahead, pantry-based, or extra-fast (made start to finish in 30 minutes or
Because the authors, both moms, understand just how hard it can be to get a home-cooked meal on the table, dishes tend to use fewer than 10 ingredients, and many employ a technique to make them simpler still, such as fajitas cooked on a sheet pan and chicken parm made in a skillet. While there are classics like Shrimp Scampi, plenty more modern and international choices, such as Curried Coconut Noodle Soup, will keep your weekday repertoire interesting. All in all, this book is, well, a keeper.
New family fave: Japanese-Style Fried Chicken. Crisp and flavored with ginger, soy, and garlic, this is hard to stop eating.