The text mentions developing your own style, but the examples are mostly modern or quirky interiors that seem too trendy and unachievable for the averThe text mentions developing your own style, but the examples are mostly modern or quirky interiors that seem too trendy and unachievable for the average person. It also feels slanted towards major, high-budget renovations.
Surface appeal takes priority over livability, most notably in the form of all-white schemes that don't seem practical for folks with pets or kids (or without a cleaning service). The pictures are pretty in that staged-for-a-magazine kind of way, but this is definitely not what I was looking for....more
I love the idea of homemade no-knead bread dough that you can make in batches and store in the fridge, but be prepared to spend more along the lines oI love the idea of homemade no-knead bread dough that you can make in batches and store in the fridge, but be prepared to spend more along the lines of seventy five minutes a day, not including making the dough itself.
Mixing the basic recipe dough was fast and easy. Shaping it was trickier because, as the cookbook explains, their dough is wetter than the traditional kind. After shaping the dough you let it sit for forty minutes and then bake it for thirty.
Our first try at using this method went fairly well. The bread cooked evenly and had a nice crust. It did come out a little on the chewy side, and it wasn't as tasty as some of the other bread recipes we've tried over the years. I'm sure our results will get better with practice, though.
Unfortunately, the instructions aren't always written as clearly as they could be. It's also very important to read the initial sections about ingredients and equipment. For example, we had to adjust the amount of water in our dough because of the kind of flour we had on hand, which we never would have known if we'd gone straight to the recipes.
Between the resting, the baking, and the suggested 2 hour cooling time, even this stripped-down technique won't fit with everyone's weekday schedule. But we'll certainly be giving it a try over the coming months.
I received a copy of this book through the Goodreads Giveaway program....more
The tips sections were great, but the recipes weren't as accessible as I was hoping for from a "home cooking" book.
Those who have easier access to spThe tips sections were great, but the recipes weren't as accessible as I was hoping for from a "home cooking" book.
Those who have easier access to specialty food shops (as well as pantry space for more limited-use ingredients) may enjoy this more than I did. But if, like me, you're just hoping for some fresh weeknight dinner ideas that you can throw together after one stop at a typical grocery store, check this out at the library before buying....more
This was fun to flip through, because it can be tough to find books about extinct animals other than dinosaurs. But apart from the focus of its subjecThis was fun to flip through, because it can be tough to find books about extinct animals other than dinosaurs. But apart from the focus of its subject and well-designed layout, it's disappointing.
The entries themselves are badly written. There are lots of short, declarative sentences piled up on each other, which come across as boring and monotonous. And when the author does indulge in different types of sentences, they're sometimes awkward or unclear.
I was also annoyed by the book's tone and some of the conclusions it presented. For example, it claims that the large number of dire wolf fossils found in the La Brea tar pits means that dire wolves "must have been very numerous animals, very stupid, or overly aggressive." Really? Those are the only possibilities? There are lots of little, unsupported judgements like this, which made me doubt the quality of the rest of the research.
I wanted to rate this more highly just for being a book about megafauna, but it's not worth its hefty textbook price tag. I'm glad that I was able to borrow a copy....more
There's a great variety of recipes here, with a lot of helpful pictures. Measurements are given for both volume and weight. Like all the America's TesThere's a great variety of recipes here, with a lot of helpful pictures. Measurements are given for both volume and weight. Like all the America's Test Kitchen stuff, there are helpful tips and warnings about common problems that people run into.
My biggest quibble is that the recipe instructions geared towards stand mixers. They give timings and mixer speeds for various dough recipes, but no similar guidance for bakers who will be doing the recipes without one. In a way this makes sense, because America's Test Kitchen recipes are about consistently producing the same results, and that's probably easier with a mixer. But those of us who have either budgets or kitchens that are too small for a stand mixer are left to work through the recipes without specific tips or instructions.
Those with either a little baking experience or the confidence to dive right in and try things will still get a lot of use out of this book. But I wouldn't recommend it for hesitant beginners who don't own a stand mixer....more
This is a nice reference to the characters, places, and things from Edgar Rice Burroughs books. It has a lot of detail, including book and chapter refThis is a nice reference to the characters, places, and things from Edgar Rice Burroughs books. It has a lot of detail, including book and chapter references for much of the information. In addition to the encyclopedia-style entries, there's a well-organized list of included books and a chronology of the events that take place in them.
The encyclopedia format makes this a fun book to browse through, but it can be difficult to use if you've forgotten the name or first few letters of what you're looking for. This could have been helped by a few memory-jogging lists of character and place names broken down into the settings where they appeared.
Thankfully it only includes things that were mentioned in books by Burroughs. You won't find entries based on movies or on "Tarzan" books written by other authors.
There are several books with a similar focus, but too many of them give the basics and then fill theThis is the colorwork book I've been waiting for.
There are several books with a similar focus, but too many of them give the basics and then fill the bulk of the work with stitch dictionaries, unattractive patterns, and intarsia charts of kittens (or worse, intarsia charts of cool, ironic images that will be dated in a year or two).
Thankfully, the focus here is firmly on technique. The opening chapter is about color theory, and should help give a little confidence to anyone hesitant about picking colors for a project. Then it gets into striping and using color in pattern stitches. The chapter on multicolor yarns includes a few pages about the way that yarn texture comes into play as well as a section on modular knitting. There's a stranded knitting chapter that has a lot of photos for us visual learners, it's followed by an intarsia section that covers technique and problem solving with not a bunny chart in sight. Then it touches on helix knitting, shadow knitting, mosaic patterns, twined knitting, double knitting, and even entrelac. Finally, there are chapters for finishing and design tips.
There are some stitch patterns and charts, but they seem to be included mostly to illustrate ideas and show possibilities - they don't overwhelm the instruction. There are only a handful of patterns, which for me is a plus in a technique book.
I have a couple of giant "knitting encyclopedia" style books that cover much of the same ground, but I can still see myself reaching for this one again and again. Partly because those huge books are kind of unwieldy, but also because of the detailed instructions and beautiful photos....more