Friday, October 11, 2013

Runner’s World Cookbook Review

Finally, a book that combines two of my favorite hobbies/past times: cooking and running.

I introduce to you the Runner’s World Cookbook150 Ultimate Recipes for Fueling Up and Slimming Down.

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Let’s just say I am a lover of cookbooks and cooking magazines. While I’m not overly confident in creating my own recipes, I love trying out new ones that others have tested and perfected. Sure, we have favorites in our household, but I make an effort to bring in at least one or two new recipes a week. It keeps things hot and heavy and exciting around here.

I am not, however, a lover of all cookbooks. In fact, I have many that sit on the shelf gathering dust mites. I am rather picky that way. The Runner’s World Cookbook, however, is a HUGE keeper. Trust me on this one.

I picked four recipes to make. The first was one that I knew would be a slam dunk with my family: Quick ‘n’ Creamy Chicken Lasagna.

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Unlike some lasagnas, it wasn’t a major pain in the ass to make. Taking a few shortcuts like using oven ready lasagna noodles and a jar of store bought sauce ensured that this came together quickly. The cream cheese gave it that perfect creamy texture. The kids awarded this dish 7/10 stars, while Ken and I thought it was an 8/10. Make for great leftovers too. Recipe HERE.

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My second recipe choice was the Minestrone with Spring Vegetables. From September to May, I eat a lot of soup. Typically, I will make a big batch for myself on Sunday and eat it for lunches throughout the week. I have tried many, many minestrone recipes and have some favorites. But, I have to say, this one rates at the top.

The rich vegetable broth combined with two different kinds of beans (the recipe called for two cans of white beans but I substituted one can for kidney beans), peas, carrots and ditaline pasta made for a great combination. The addition of red pepper flakes gave it the perfect “kick.” Recipe HERE.

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Next up was Red Beans and Rice with Turkey Sausage. We eat a TON of beans around here, (hence all of my farting) and beans and rice with hot sauce is a staple for us. This recipe was quite quick if you make the brown rice ahead of time. Using chicken or veggie broth to make the rice is essential to adding flavor (if you do make this one – it calls for 2 cups of dry rice - that is a TON of rice. I knocked it down to 1 1/2 and that was prefect). I loved the addition of thyme to this recipe, an herb I don’t usually put in my beans and rice. The family gave this one a solid 8/10. Clean plates all around.

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Lastly, I did the most risky thing I have done in a long time. I closed my eyes, opened the book and pointed to a recipe. I promised myself that no matter what I would make it. I did this because I so often get drawn to the same types of things and wanted to branch out.

The winner? Greek Lima Bean Salad. This comes together in about five minutes flat. The combination of salty feta cheese, crunchy red peppers, chewy kalamata olives and tangy lemon juice makes for a great salad. If you are not a lover of limas (as I know many aren’t) you could substitute your favorite bean. Recipe HERE.

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I tried four recipes and had four dishes I would definitely make again. I would say those are some great odds. There are many more recipes I want to try from this book.

Yes, Runner’s World sent me this book for review, but all opinions are mine. I have nothing to gain by telling you this is a worthwhile purchase for the cook/runner in your life. For $27, I say go for it. Or, splurge and get it for yourself. You deserve it and dammit I like you. Find it for purchase HERE.

Best new recipe you’ve tried lately?

Do you tend to go with stand byes or try new stuff?

SUAR

21 comments:

  1. Thank you for this!!! I've been in such a recipe rut lately and I've been debating on if I wanted to "run" out and get this cookbook for awhile now. Looks like I'll be making a purchase this weekend. And it's a bonus the Total Wine store is right next to the book store. Sounds like the stars are aligning in my favor....

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  2. Thanks! I saw the article about it in the magazine and wondered if it was really any good. Appreciate the review!

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  3. Oh my goodness, everything there look amazing! Nice work! Even with recipes, my creations don't always come out look quite so appetizing. I'm tempted to get this book as a gift for some of my runner friends. I can't imagine ever using it myself, though. I have the internet for that!

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  4. Lima beans. Gack. And other terrible noises. I never try recipes. I just eat what Linda puts in front of me, and except for some of the green veggies, it's all good.

    You must be a more confident cook than you admit, to let your kids vote on your cooking.
    I totally LOVE the plate the lasagna was served on!

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  5. One of the best recipes I tried recently was the Green Bean Salad with Artichoke Hearts and Olives from Gather: The Art of Paleo Entertaining. I thought it was going to be just a simple side at my little party, but holy wow! The flavors in it were stunning.

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  6. http://www.someecards.com/usercards/viewcard/MjAxMi1mMjk2YzUzOTVlMmRmYjFh#link

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  7. Where's the recipe for the sausage and red beans and rice???

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  8. I love the red beans and rice recipe! I agree about too much rice though. If it's in the cookbook try the caramelized onion and fig pizza. Both those recipes were printed in the same article, and my friends and family loved them both.

    http://www.runnersworld.com/recipes/fresh-thinking?page=single

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  9. I bought the book recently and have cooked a couple of the recipes. I love it. I currently use cook books like travel books....I look at it and think, oooh, I could make that....I generally don't as I am not really the cook in the family but lately I have been due to an injury sustained by the resident cook! I LOVE the idea of opening the book and pointing! Fabulous! Will give it a try

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  10. I usually tend to stick to stand bys since I'm so busy. On the weekend, that's when I cook/bake. I'm a huge fan of the crockpot......chicken tortilla soup, chili, sweet potato soup, etc.....especially on these cold, rainy days.

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  11. Thank you for the review! I was wondering about this one and now I will buy it :)

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  12. What do the different colored tabs on the top stand for? I'm really interested in getting this, I'm just pretty picky about how cookbooks are organized (weird, I know).

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  13. I just ordered this cookbook, and am LOVING it. You must try the carmelized onion and fig pizza with goat cheese by Deena Kastor. Amazing!

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  14. Best new recipe I've tried is actually one I created and posted on my blog for Peach and cranberry pie with streusel topping. I definitely like trying new things versus standbys, which I think drives my husband crazy, so I do have a few things I return to over and over.

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  15. Spent last week following some recipes/exercise routines from Sept Self Magazine. Most of the recipes were a bust. I was disappointed with nearly all - not even finishing eating a few and just choking down the others because I was so hungry. I had one win with these Asian chicken cups (in romaine). It was an experiment, but I think I would have done better to try some recipes like the ones you posted here. I'm not sure my family would eat all the beans, but I'd at least give it a try. Guess I'm just a meat and potatoes girl for the most part and the kids/husband are even worse.

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  16. Best new recipe was a garlic butter wine sauce to go over pasta (as a side to chicken piccata). Not low cal by any means but delicious! I have many stand by recipes and like to try new things too. Cooks Illustrated has a lighter recipe cookbook that has lots of good healthier recipes but flavorful as well.

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  17. Best new recipe was a garlic butter wine sauce to go over pasta (as a side to chicken piccata). Not low cal by any means but delicious! I have many stand by recipes and like to try new things too. Cooks Illustrated has a lighter recipe cookbook that has lots of good healthier recipes but flavorful as well.

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  19. It is on Barnes and Noble.com for 18.54. I am a member so got free shipping.

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  20. Thank you thank you! The email about this cookbook has been sitting in my inbox for a while now and sometimes the recipes in the magazine are hit or miss, so I was so happy to read your review. Awesome!

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  21. This cooking book is what I've been looking for. So glad I find it here! Very informative and it's quite fun to read. Thank for sharing

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