165 Quick Dinners, Sides, Holiday Dishes & More.
The premise of this new book by Michael Symon is simple. Take 5 fresh ingredients + 5 minutes of heat and get 165 ridiculously easy from scratch recipes.
Michael’s promise is this: He’ll help you get a from-scratch meal on the table for your family, in very little time, for not a lot of money, and without a lot of fuss. He believes in a well-stocked pantry (which I totally agree with!) and has organized the recipes by season to help you pick the freshest ingredients.
“When you embrace seasonal cooking, you can enjoy food at it’s freshest, healthiest, and most affordable…foods grown locally and picked in season are more wholesome because they don’t have to travel halfway around the globe…to reach you.”
Sometimes a “celebrities” idea of a well-stocked pantry is unrealistic, but I thought Michael’s was spot on. There are no unusual items that a regular person would never use. I did look up one item called “ras el hanout spice,” which turns out to be a combination of warm spices you probably already have in your spice cabinet. Here’s how to make it.
INGREDIENTS for Ras el Hanout Spice
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander seeds
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
Mix the spices together and store it in a tightly capped mason jar. It will keep a year. Use it anytime you want a bit of the taste of Morocco in a dish.
Recipe Ideas from 5 in 5 for Every Season
Spring gives us access to more fresh produce and is welcome after the long winter months. Do you think your family will eat these?
- Spring Pea Guacamole with Grilled Bread and Radish
- Rigatoni with Mushrooms & Swiss Chard
- Chicken and Couscous with Snow Peas & Ginger
- Sweet Onion-Smothered Pork Chops
- Quick Asparagus & Goat Cheese Frittata
Summer is like spring in overdrive and in addition to fresh salad greens you’ll also get all the warm weather crops like summer squash, tomatoes, and basil. Here’s s sampling of summer recipes from the book.
- Chicken Breasts with Strawberry and Goat Cheese Salad
- Breaded Beef Sirloin with Zucchini & Tomato Salad
- Fried Eggplant Sandwiches with Harissa (a spicy North African condiment and a great substitute for ordinary hot sauce)
- Calamari in Quick Fresh Tomato Sauce
- Grilled Corn with Parmesan & Chives
- Tempura Green Beans
As the fall days grow shorter and colder we transition into sturdier veggies and hearty greens. These recipes are comforting and family friendly
- Pan Roasted Chicken Thighs with Shallots
- Rigatoni with Mushrooms & Sage
- Pork with Gingered Plums
- Autumn Panzanella is a wonderful salad mix of granny smith apples, brussels sprouts, blue cheese and baguette. Topped off with your own apple cider/dijon mustard dressing, it’s tasty!
- Pan-Roasted Cod with Cauliflower, Raisins & Pine Nuts
These winter recipes promise to achieve the flavor of a comforting slow braise, in a fraction of the time.
- Mushroom Philly Cheesesteak sandwiches
- Cubed Pork with Cabbage & Walnuts
- Butternut Squash Couscous with Mint & Almonds
- Rigatoni with Ham & Broccoli Rabe
I can be a challenge to get fresh produce in the heart of the winter. In my opinion, these Holiday ingredients are grocery store staples that you will have access to any time of year.
- Roasted Cauliflower with Anchovies & Pine Nuts
- Mashed Potato Cakes with Parmesan
- Fresh Cranberry Relish with Mint & Scallions
- Glazed Carrots with Pecans & Nutmeg
Who is the 5 in 5 Cookbook for?
If you like Michael Symon on his TV show The Chew, you will probably like this book.
If you have a garden and grow your own produce, or you belong to a CSA, you may find the recipes in this book gives you a fresh take on an eating from scratch dinner.
I have the opportunity to review a lot of cookbooks for PreparednessMama. We have a simple formula to help decide if they are keepers… or are donated to the local library for others to enjoy.
If at least half of the recipes are something we would consider cooking AND if the recipes inspire us to eat better or give a different twist on a traditional meal – we keep it and add it to our cookbook collection.
Michael Symon’s 5 in 5 for Every Season: 165 Quick Dinners, Sides, Holiday Dishes, & More has earned a place on our cookbook shelf.
There are affiliate links in this post. I received this book from the Blogging for Books program in exchange for an honest review. The opinions expressed are entirely my own.