Books That Cook
Cookbooks for busy folks, students and muffin lovers
TITLE: Busy People's Super Simple 30 Minute Menus: 137 Complete Menus Timed For Success by Dawn Hall (Thomas Nelson Publishers, $18.99; 338 pages)
Generally speaking: Another cookbook that promises meals in 30 minutes or less. The recipes are appealing, and the menu ideas are versatile.
For: Busy people, but it would make a nice starter cookbook for college students or newlyweds. The introduction includes a definition of supplies and ingredients, and a Web site offers downloadable grocery lists. The book is also perfect for diabetics and the weight-conscious: Diabetic exchanges and nutritional information are included for every recipe.
Menus: Steak tips with onions and gravy, loaded smashed potatoes; crabby ham and potato au gratin, salmon Florentine, vegetarian goulash, crab fettuccine Alfredo and southwest chipotle tossed salad.
Don't forget dessert: Even desserts can be made in 30 minutes or less. Recipes include stuffed almond cupcakes and butter pecan cookies.
Title: Muffins: Sweet and Savory Comfort Food by Cyndi Duncan and Georgie Patrick (Gibbs, Smith Publisher, $26.95; 128 pages)
Generally speaking: Muffins aren't just for breakfast. They're good for snacking, and savory muffins are perfect accompaniments for chili, soup, salads and more.
For: Muffin lovers and cooks who want to experiment.
Recipes: Double fudge, quick sesame cheese, bacon chive corn, raspberry, graham pear, whole wheat, walnut streusel, Dijon ham, pound cake, pineapple coconut and rhubarb.
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Triple Berry Trifle
1 (8-ounce) fat-free dessert whipped topping
1 (16-ounce) bag frozen strawberries
1 (10-ounce) angel food cake
1 (16-ounce) bag frozen blackberries
½ cup frozen blueberries
2/3 cup sugar-free strawberry glaze
• Slice angel food cake into thirds horizontally. Set aside.
• In a large mixing bowl, gently stir together the frozen berries and strawberry glaze until well mixed. Set aside 3 blackberries for later use.
• Place one angel food cake layer in the bottom of a glass trifle bowl. Cut one layer into 1-inch pieces. Place half the pieces in the bowl to fill in any empty spaces. Spoon half the mixed berries evenly over the cake. Pour any juice over the fruit and cake.
• Spread 2/3 of the whipped topping over the berries. Place the remaining full cake layer over the whipped topping. Place the remaining cake pieces in the bowl to fill in any empty spaces.
• Spoon the remaining berries over the cake. Spread the remaining 1/3 of the whipped topping in the center of the dessert, exposing most of the berries. Garnish with the 3 reserved blackberries in the center of the whipped topping. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Source: Busy People's Super Simple 30 Minute Menus: 137 Complete Menus Timed For Success by Dawn Hall (Thomas Nelson Publishers, $18.99)
Bacon Chive Corn Muffins
1 (14-ounce) package corn muffin mix
2 teaspoons snipped chives
6 slices crispy bacon, crisp drained and crumbled
• Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray muffin cups with nonstick spray. Prepare muffin mix according to package directions. Fold in chives, pepper and bacon.
• Fill muffin cups 2/3 full. Bake for 15 to 17 minutes.
Makes 12 muffins.
Source: Muffins: Sweet and Savory Comfort Food by Cyndi Duncan and Georgie Patrick (Gibbs, Smith Publisher, $26.95)