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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Robin Takes 5 by Robin Miller

Robin Takes 5 by Robin Miller
Published by Andrews McMeel Publishing, ISBN 978144-408459
Paperback, $29.99
It's a common experience to get home from work and have to get dinner on the table pronto because someone has baseball practice, someone else has to go to work, someone has a meeting. Robin Miller, host of the Food Network's Quick Fix Meals, has a solution for us with her book
Robin Takes 5: 500 recipes, 5 ingredients or less, 500 calories or less, 5 nights a week at 5PM.

Five hundred recipes is a lot, and many of them can be repetitive (and a good number of them use mustard for some reason), but I found several recipes that I will use. I'm trying to get more fiber in our diet, and Miller has some good recipes using all kinds of canned beans.

I know my college aged sons would enjoy Chicken Nacho Dinner, made by topping corn tortilla chips with a can of black beans, shredded chicken, shredded cheese and salsa and baking for 10 minutes. It also has 6g of fiber.  I love that there are so many recipes in this book that have lots of fiber, including Cheese Tortellini with Wild Mushroom Gravy (9g), Pasta Spirals with White Beans, Broccoli and Parmesan (9g) and Penne with Zucchini-Roasted Garlic Sauce (8g), and one that I have already tried, Tuscan Chicken with White Beans, Tomatoes and Oregano (5g) that was really tasty and reminded me of one of our favorite dinners at an Italian restaurant we frequent. Next time, I would cook the chicken breasts whole, instead of dicing them, but another good thing about this book is that it is easy to tweak recipes to your own liking.

The book is divided into eight chapters, like Soups, Stews & Chowders, Pasta, Risotto & Rice, Chicken & Turkey, Side Dishes and Desserts. Now that fall is here, I can't wait to try Carmelized Onion Soup with Melted Swiss & Croutons, Wild Mushroom Soup, and Corn Chowder with Shrimp.  

I made Chocolate Raspberry Sorbet, which was simply adding hot fudge sauce and mini chocolate chips to your favorite store bought raspberry sorbet and refreezing. It got rave reviews from two gentlemen who love gourmet foods, and had them fooled. One recipe I did make, Butterscotch Brownies, did not turn out as I hoped, but you can't win them all.

I like that the nutritional information for each recipe is located in a prominent box to the left of the recipe. It makes it so easy to compare and find what you're looking for, whether's it's calorie counts, carb counts or fiber content.

Robin Takes 5 is perfect for busy moms and dads, for people just learning how to cook, and college students. It has easy, clear-to-understand instructions and uses ingredients that most people already have in their pantry. If you want to make healthy, easy dinners for your family, instead of picking up fast food, pick up Robin Takes 5; your family will thank you.

rating 4 of 5

1 comment:

  1. Sometimes the simplest ideas are the best. Catchy title and concept too.