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Time for Dinner: Strategies, Inspiration, and Recipes for Family Meals Every Night of the Week

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Whether moms have picky or adventurous eaters and whether they love to cook or just endure it, getting dinner on the table weeknight after weeknight is enough to make a mom throw in the towel. It's a grind that wore down former Cookie magazine editors, Pilar Guzmn, Jenny Rosentrach, and Alanna Stanguntil they made it their mission to figure out all the ways they could recl Whether moms have picky or adventurous eaters and whether they love to cook or just endure it, getting dinner on the table weeknight after weeknight is enough to make a mom throw in the towel. It's a grind that wore down former Cookie magazine editors, Pilar Guzmn, Jenny Rosentrach, and Alanna Stanguntil they made it their mission to figure out all the ways they could reclaim the family dinner. Time for Dinner is that playbook of tricks, inspiration, plans, and 100 go-to recipes. With 250 photographs, it's a visual toolkit of a book that gives every mom the ideas and strategies she needs to get a great family meal on the table night after night without losing her mind (or her sense of humor).


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Whether moms have picky or adventurous eaters and whether they love to cook or just endure it, getting dinner on the table weeknight after weeknight is enough to make a mom throw in the towel. It's a grind that wore down former Cookie magazine editors, Pilar Guzmn, Jenny Rosentrach, and Alanna Stanguntil they made it their mission to figure out all the ways they could recl Whether moms have picky or adventurous eaters and whether they love to cook or just endure it, getting dinner on the table weeknight after weeknight is enough to make a mom throw in the towel. It's a grind that wore down former Cookie magazine editors, Pilar Guzmn, Jenny Rosentrach, and Alanna Stanguntil they made it their mission to figure out all the ways they could reclaim the family dinner. Time for Dinner is that playbook of tricks, inspiration, plans, and 100 go-to recipes. With 250 photographs, it's a visual toolkit of a book that gives every mom the ideas and strategies she needs to get a great family meal on the table night after night without losing her mind (or her sense of humor).

30 review for Time for Dinner: Strategies, Inspiration, and Recipes for Family Meals Every Night of the Week

  1. 4 out of 5

    Beth Bender

    I'm not their audience (especially since I'm a SAHM with more time to plan and cook) but so far I really love this book. The systematic approach to constructing meals and stocking the pantry appeals to the uber domestic geek side of me. I also very much appreciate the options given to accommodate different tastes within the family without turning the preparer into a short order cook. My kids aren't super picky eaters and I don't see anything wrong with accommodating their tastes *within reason*. I'm not their audience (especially since I'm a SAHM with more time to plan and cook) but so far I really love this book. The systematic approach to constructing meals and stocking the pantry appeals to the uber domestic geek side of me. I also very much appreciate the options given to accommodate different tastes within the family without turning the preparer into a short order cook. My kids aren't super picky eaters and I don't see anything wrong with accommodating their tastes *within reason*. This book does that beautifully. Another reviewer commented on the dominance of meat recipes in the book and I agree completely. We're cutting back on meat in my family and I could use more inspiration in that area. My one quibble is the recipe for spring rolls with the tag "Great for lunchboxes." Um, I spend a lot of time in the kitchen and make a lot of things from scratch but making spring rolls for my kids lunch isn't really a priority. Of course, I suck at things like that so mine would undoubtedly fall apart!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    I'm not one who sits & reads through cookbooks. I like this one's ease of use, pictures throughout, simple layout. It truly is a visual cooking toolkit. It is not cluttered page after page with lots of endless wordy recipes. You can skim through it & find what you need pictorially. Recipes are simple, quick,& something you would actually cook using minimal ingredients & the family eats, which is a hugely desired combo in my house. Really, who couldn't love an omnivore family cookbook with chapte I'm not one who sits & reads through cookbooks. I like this one's ease of use, pictures throughout, simple layout. It truly is a visual cooking toolkit. It is not cluttered page after page with lots of endless wordy recipes. You can skim through it & find what you need pictorially. Recipes are simple, quick,& something you would actually cook using minimal ingredients & the family eats, which is a hugely desired combo in my house. Really, who couldn't love an omnivore family cookbook with chapter titles like these: "If I could just make it to Wednesday" showing 3 additional meal options for your leftovers from the main dish, "I want something simple, fast, and hard to screw up", "I want to have a family dinner where we all eat the same meal", "Do sandwiches count?", "I want to use what I already have", "Let's all have a playdate".

  3. 5 out of 5

    Amelia

    I checked this book out of the library and I think I'll be buying a copy. It has a couple of really useful sections at the beginning and end. I especially like the "So you have a ____" section, which shows several different ways to use various things that might be sitting in the fridge. The recipes in the middle are okay, but don't add much that you can't find elsewhere. I agree with other reviewers that it would have been nice to see more vegetarian recipes, but otherwise it's very good. I checked this book out of the library and I think I'll be buying a copy. It has a couple of really useful sections at the beginning and end. I especially like the "So you have a ____" section, which shows several different ways to use various things that might be sitting in the fridge. The recipes in the middle are okay, but don't add much that you can't find elsewhere. I agree with other reviewers that it would have been nice to see more vegetarian recipes, but otherwise it's very good.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Joan

    I love the layout of this book as well as the recipes. I can page thru and find some true inspiration for that night. The best part may be the small section at the back where she focuses on one ingredient - "So you have tomatoes" ... here are three great recipes, "So you have rotisserie chicken"... etc. I love the layout of this book as well as the recipes. I can page thru and find some true inspiration for that night. The best part may be the small section at the back where she focuses on one ingredient - "So you have tomatoes" ... here are three great recipes, "So you have rotisserie chicken"... etc.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Bec Lloyd

    I enjoyed this book but found it was low on strategy, higher on recipes. There's no escaping the differences in the way American recipes are created vs Australian. There are always more processed elements and an emphasis on Tex-Mex ingredients which are not readily available here. A good read, though, and I would love to see more from teams of magazine staff like Cookie's. I enjoyed this book but found it was low on strategy, higher on recipes. There's no escaping the differences in the way American recipes are created vs Australian. There are always more processed elements and an emphasis on Tex-Mex ingredients which are not readily available here. A good read, though, and I would love to see more from teams of magazine staff like Cookie's.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Lindsey

    What an amazing book! I'm making everything! What an amazing book! I'm making everything!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Asho

    I loved this cookbook, with a few caveats. 1. It was most enjoyable for me when I remembered the subtitle: "Strategies, Inspiration, and Recipes for Family Meals Every Night of the Week." It's the strategies and inspiration part that is key to remember as you read this cookbook. Not everything in this book is intended to be a step-by-step, even remotely complex recipe. I'd say about half of the pages in here are just general inspiration for getting dinner on the table. Remembering that it's just I loved this cookbook, with a few caveats. 1. It was most enjoyable for me when I remembered the subtitle: "Strategies, Inspiration, and Recipes for Family Meals Every Night of the Week." It's the strategies and inspiration part that is key to remember as you read this cookbook. Not everything in this book is intended to be a step-by-step, even remotely complex recipe. I'd say about half of the pages in here are just general inspiration for getting dinner on the table. Remembering that it's just supposed to be strategies and inspiration for using up pantry staples kept me from getting annoyed that, say, the authors bothered to include step-by-step instructions for making a tomato sandwich. 2. Most of the recipes and suggestions in this book can easily be thrown together with pantry staples and inexpensive grocery store ingredients, which is what I want from a book about making dinner for my child (I'm not gonna waste saffron on someone who is too young to appreciate it, ya know what I mean?). However, there were a few things in here that use pricey ingredients and that I'm unlikely to make at home. For instance, I'm probably not going to attempt sushi, even the sort of poor man's sushi featured here. There weren't many recipes that required a special shopping trip, but there were a few (and I'll just admit that my life right now doesn't allow for shopping trips to specialty stores; if it's not available at Shop Rite, I'm skipping the recipe). And, hey, those recipes might be in there to please more discerning cooks, but I feel like those type of recipes didn't really jive with the overall tone of this book. If I feel like doing even slightly gourmet cooking, I'm going to go to another source. 3. This book is geared to a very specific audience. I was happy with it because I'm their target audience: suburban/urban mothers of young children who are simply interested in getting dinner on the table as painlessly as possible and want it to be more-or-less healthy but don't mind using some packaged foods to make that happen. If cooking from scratch is very important to you, or your family has a lot of dietary restrictions, or you actually enjoy spending hours in the kitchen, this book isn't for you. Overall, I was pleased with this cookbook, especially since I got it used for a very good price and bought it totally on impulse (after reading a bit of Rosenstrach's blog). I just did my menu planning for the upcoming two week period and more than half of the things I'm planning to make come from Time for Dinner, so obviously I was inspired! For me, I know this will prove very useful and practical.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Kyla

    I like the graphic qualities and layout but I'm not really their audience - I feel comfortable improvising and my god, the meat - I felt really overwhelmed by meat - can we work on making family dinner plans a little less meat-centric? It's special occasion/feast material, people. Also, it's not their fault but I kinda hate it when recipes include dumbed down versions for kids. I'm going to be all smug-bastard now and say my kid eats what we eat - no variations, except we sometimes add extra chi I like the graphic qualities and layout but I'm not really their audience - I feel comfortable improvising and my god, the meat - I felt really overwhelmed by meat - can we work on making family dinner plans a little less meat-centric? It's special occasion/feast material, people. Also, it's not their fault but I kinda hate it when recipes include dumbed down versions for kids. I'm going to be all smug-bastard now and say my kid eats what we eat - no variations, except we sometimes add extra chili sauce to our dishes. But she likes spicy and olives and other things most three year olds are not stoked on. Part of that is dumb-luck - like the kid who sleeps through the night from the get-go and the parents are all "I don't understand why yours won't sleep" ho ho - but I do believe that part of it is she has has our food from the beginning of solids, just ground up in a food mill. And part of it is laziness - I am so not going to be a short order cook for persnickity tastes. If you don't want it, you're not hungry. In short, I would purchase this for my sister in a heartbeat. It's just not for me.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    This book was OK - you're either going to love or hate some of their plans (like cooking big on Sunday and using the leftovers till Wednesday; picking an ingredient then choosing one of three meals based on what you have, etc). I'm not a particular fan of either of those, since they don't work with the time I have or the way I shop. But the straightforward recipes here are good, and kid-friendly. The adaptations for kids aren't anything radical - generally just leaving out an ingredient or two, This book was OK - you're either going to love or hate some of their plans (like cooking big on Sunday and using the leftovers till Wednesday; picking an ingredient then choosing one of three meals based on what you have, etc). I'm not a particular fan of either of those, since they don't work with the time I have or the way I shop. But the straightforward recipes here are good, and kid-friendly. The adaptations for kids aren't anything radical - generally just leaving out an ingredient or two, which I think is a good approach. There were a few good ideas in here that I'll keep with me and use, but most of the book just didn't gel with the way we cook and eat. The graphics and illustrations are great, though.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Linda

    I rate this book mostly for inspiration. I prepared the smoked salmon soup, which was simple and good. Most of the recipes are very short and simple and aimed at weeknight family meals. One of the most inspiring components of this cookbook is the section on how to use the leftovers. Although I did not try any of those recipes, I recalled those sections while shopping and PLANNED what to use the leftover roast beef for or the extra sauce.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Catherine

    This is not going to be a "go-to" cookbook for me, but I feel it met its goal for its intended audience. The recipes in the cookbook are pretty standard fare. It didn't inspire me to open it up and try some new dishes. However, what it is intended to do is provide some easy to follow recipes with easy to find ingredients so that dinnertime is as stress-free as possible for busy families. When looked at it from that perspective, I think it does a fine job. This is not going to be a "go-to" cookbook for me, but I feel it met its goal for its intended audience. The recipes in the cookbook are pretty standard fare. It didn't inspire me to open it up and try some new dishes. However, what it is intended to do is provide some easy to follow recipes with easy to find ingredients so that dinnertime is as stress-free as possible for busy families. When looked at it from that perspective, I think it does a fine job.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jilanna

    I love this book. I was going to buy it for my sister for Christmas but I decided to wait until I had read / used it myself. I am a big fan of Jenny Rosenstrach's website I love this book. I was going to buy it for my sister for Christmas but I decided to wait until I had read / used it myself. I am a big fan of Jenny Rosenstrach's website

  13. 4 out of 5

    Maya

    I am loving this cookbook so far. I used to love the recipes in Cookie magazine and how they would chose one ingredient and show you three or so recipes with that ingredient. We've made almost half of the recipes already and there are only a few we didn't like. They are simple recipes that can be made pretty fast. I am loving this cookbook so far. I used to love the recipes in Cookie magazine and how they would chose one ingredient and show you three or so recipes with that ingredient. We've made almost half of the recipes already and there are only a few we didn't like. They are simple recipes that can be made pretty fast.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Gina Enk

    I've used several of these recipes and plan to try more. A good resource for a home cook who is looking to spice up the family's dinner routine. I get tired of thinking about cooking the same recipes over and over. This gives me needed inspiration! I've used several of these recipes and plan to try more. A good resource for a home cook who is looking to spice up the family's dinner routine. I get tired of thinking about cooking the same recipes over and over. This gives me needed inspiration!

  15. 5 out of 5

    Esther Chae

    Great simple recipes. Not as healthy as I'd like, but simple! Great simple recipes. Not as healthy as I'd like, but simple!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Hope4flowers

    Recommended In Dinner A Love Story Cookbook

  17. 4 out of 5

    Deb

    Recommended by Briana as a good resource for family meals.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

    Some good tips and tricks but the recipes are just OK. A good read from the library for dinner strategies!

  19. 5 out of 5

    Beka

    Good ideas for busy parents; nothing that appealed to me.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Deloris Baker

  21. 5 out of 5

    Cloie

  22. 4 out of 5

    Amy

  23. 4 out of 5

    Justine

  24. 5 out of 5

    Alison

  25. 4 out of 5

    Katie

  26. 4 out of 5

    Diane Sotosek Miller

  27. 5 out of 5

    Jah H.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Jen

  29. 5 out of 5

    T

  30. 4 out of 5

    Patti

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