I had the good fortune of meeting Debbie Koenig for the first time at a Food Writer’s Conference two years ago. She was in the very early stages of writing her first book at that point, and I’ve enjoyed reading her blog, and catching up with her in person whenever possible, ever since.
What I love most about Debbie and her writing is that she is so down to earth…so real. Plus she’s hilarious! It doesn’t seem to matter that I am not her target audience (new parents)…I still adore her work and jumped at the chance to review her about-to-be-published book here on my blog.
I think Parents Need to Eat Too: Nap-Friendly Recipes, One-Handed Meals, and Time-Saving Kitchen Tricks for New Parents is brilliant. Designed to help new parents feed themselves well, the book is filled with recipes that are simple and delicious; plus each recipe comes with a bonus: instructions for preparing baby food from the same ingredients! Tested on new parents, these are recipes that are appropriate for potentially hassled, potentially sleep-deprived people who still want to eat wholesome, home cooked meals.
I am not a new parent and I just loved this book. Why? Because I am a busy parent. During the early part of each day when my kids are at school, I am immersed in my cooking, writing, and photographing. Then every afternoon starting at about 2:30, I am driving my kids around to their various activities: art classes, rock climbing, music lessons, gymnastics, karate, Hebrew School, etc. We don’t usually get home until sometime between 6 and 7 (sometimes even later), and you can bet that everyone’s starving when we walk in the door. So I rely on recipes that come together quickly: recipes just like the ones in Debbie’s book. I may not be juggling a baby at this point, but I am still generally rushed to get dinner on the table; and I think most people out there are, too.
Bottom line: this book is a wonderful resource for brand new moms and dads…and what a perfect “new parent gift” it would make! But don’t overlook the fact that it’s a great book for ANYONE who wants to cook uncomplicated, wholesome, and tasty food for themselves and their families. Oh, and the chocolate chip cookie recipe in the book absolutely ROCKS.
This recipe for Honey Soy Roasted Salmon, which appears in Debbie’s book, is fantastic. It takes almost no time to prepare, and it’s healthy and delicious. I recommend using wild salmon if it’s available to you.
Recipe for Honey-Soy Roasted Salmon
Yield: Serves 4
Total Time: 35 minutes (5 minutes active)
Debbie says, "You've got to love a marinade with only three ingredients. I serve this with rice and something green and steamed- think broccoli, snow or sugar snap peas, or spinach. If you enjoy a saucy fish (sounds like a British come-on, doesn't it?), double the marinade ingredients.
*1/3 cup honey
*1/4 cup soy sauce (Debbie suggests reduced-sodium; I used organic tamari)
*1 teaspoon Sriracha sauce or other Asian chili sauce, or to taste
*Four 6 ounce salmon fillets, skinned (or, if you like the skin, leave it on)
1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
2. Whisk together the honey, soy sauce, and Sriracha in a shallow bowl. Add the salmon, turning to coat, and marinate for 20 minutes at room temperature, and up to a day refrigerated.
3. Grease a baking dish large enough to hold the fish in 1 layer. Remove salmon from the marinade and arrange in the dish (skin-side down, if you've left it on). Reserve marinade.
4. Roast fish just until it's opaque all the way through, 12-14 minutes.
5. While the fish is roasting, pour the reserved marinade into a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Cook until thickened, 4 or 5 minutes. (Watch carefully or you'll end up with something akin to tar).
6. Serve the fish with the rice and a green vegetable, and pass the sauce separately.
Appears with permission from Parents Need to Eat Too: Nap-Friendly Recipes, One-Handed Meals, and Time-Saving Kitchen Tricks for New Parents. Copyright William Morrow, an Imprint of HarperCollins, 2012.
If you’d like to win a copy of Parents Need To Eat Too, please leave a comment below before Friday, February 24th, 2012 at midnight EST. I will pick a winner via random.org sometime on Saturday, February 25th, 2012. This giveaway is only open to US residents and I must have your email in order to notify you if you win. Good luck!
ps If you just can’t wait to see if you’re the giveaway winner, anyone who orders the book before February 21 receives a free Digital Starter Kit including bonus recipes, a gift card, and more :)