Keys To The Kitchen is a go-to resource for home cooks who want to become more adventurous.
Keys To The Kitchen is available at many a bookstore including the big guys and the smaller, independent stores. You may also come across in a few unexpected places like when you’re shopping at Nordstrom, Anthropologie, Crate & Barrel or your neighborhood boutique. If you’re looking to click for a copy, check out these online retailers:
Keys To The Kitchen is my first cookbook and it came about because my friends kept calling me up like I was their personal kitchen hotline! Okay, that’s not quite how it happened, but I realized through my work on Food Network and CHOW as well as through my friends cooking confessions, that there was a sort of lost generations of cooks out there. Sure, a lot of Gen X, Y, and Millennials know how to eat well, but the majority don’t know how to cook with confidence and creativity. I wrote this book to help with that.
At first glance, Keys To The Kitchen may seem like it’s just a technique-based cookbook — a modern manual to the kitchen — but it’s way more than that. Organized into four main sections: The Set-Up, The How-To, The Recipes and The Riff, Keys to the Kitchen takes you from the store to the stove with over 300 original, whole foods-based recipes.
“Filled to the brim with information that makes being in the kitchen infinitely easier! It’s basically the modern day Joy of Cooking.”
In the first two sections — The Set Up and The How To — are where beginners will get a good confidence boost and where confident cooks will hopefully find a few new tricks and tips. You’ll learn how to shop responsibly, what to stock your pantry with, which appliances are a must, which are “nice to have,” and over 40 essential cooking techniques.
The Recipes section is my personal favorite because I got to create a ton (as in hundreds) of original recipes that I’ve never published anywhere else before. It features easy-to-follow recipes, accompanied by Alex Farnum’s beautiful photography. Each recipe has a unique combination of flavors — some of my personal favorites are: Crepes with Meyer Lemon Curd and Fresh Berries, Almond Brioche Sticky Buns, Caramelized Fennel Tarte Tatin, Balsamic Glazed Roast Chicken, Cheat Sheet Beef Pho, Roasted Squash Pasta with Sage Brown Butter, Indian Burritos with Curried Cauliflower, Miso-Marinated Beef and Charred Vegetable Skewers, Coconut Mahi Mahi Ceviche, Plum Crisp with Toasted Almond-Cornmeal Topping, and Coconut Chai Coffee Cake. In addition, each recipe features additional tips and tricks, including alternative flavor combinations and suggested substitutions for hard-to-find ingredients.
“Just what I needed – a well organized, resourceful cookbook to help me navigate and enjoy working in my kitchen. Great references and descriptions of “how to”. This is so much more than just recipes!”
In the fourth and final section, The Riff, you’ll learn how to go beyond just following a recipe and begin “cooking from the hip.” It includes an additional 100 recipes, weeknight menu ideas, entertaining tips, and how to re-invent last night’s leftovers.
Keys To The Kitchen can’t cook for you, but it can help you become a better cook!
If you want to learn a bit more about the book, check out this book trailer:
I’d imagine you get how much I like Keys To The Kitchen, but here what some other folks have to say about the book:
“Whether you’re an experienced cook with decades under your spatula or a relative newbie who knows a little but could really use a primer, Aida Mollenkamp’s new book Keys to the Kitchen, can help take your cooking to the next level.” – Times Union, 3/25/13
“Keys to the Kitchen…involves hunting down exciting flavor combinations from far and wide and sharing them in recipes even the uninitiated can easily tackle. ” –Boston Globe, 3/19/13
“Sharing her food expertise, the host of Food Network’s “Ask Aida” and Cooking Channel’s “FoodCrafters” acts as the old-fashioned grandmother peeking over the shoulder as she guides aspiring cooks.” –Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 2/26/13
“[Keys To The Kitchen] is a wealth of information, and it’s already taken a spot in our section of essential cookbooks, very close to Mark Bittman, Yotam Ottolenghi, and the classic Joy of Cooking.” – Tampa Bay Times, 2/19/13
“Listen, I love The Joy of Cooking. No disrespect. But after spending some time with Aida Mollenkamp’s Keys to the Kitchen, I think that I may just have a new best bud in the kitchen.”- The Kitchn, 2/15/13
“If you’ve got the basics down, check out the Food Network star’s in-depth manual. She gives advice on how to shop smarter, then moves on to recipes like inventive salads and mac and cheese.” –O, The Oprah Magazine, January 2013
“Aida Mollenkamp…is on a crusade to rescue these poor unfortunates from their fear of frying (and everything else in the kitchen) and give them the knowledge and confidence to become successful cooks. And she makes an impressive job of it, with detailed, clear and simple advice on shopping for food, storing it, ingredients, prepping techniques, equipment, and so on.” –The Daily Mail (UK), 12/15/12
“Keys to the Kitchen, by former Food Network star Aida Mollenkamp, is a must-have guide for any home cook.” – Shape Magazine, December 2012
“She’s encouraging home cooks to be more adventurous in the kitchen and not to be afraid to try new techniques and tastes. By providing some basic principles to purchasing, preparing and cooking food creatively she promotes the development of an adventurous approach to eating. ” –KQED: Bay Area Bites, 10/9/2012
PopSugar Food named it one of their 15 Cookbooks of 2012 They Can’t Put Down
BlissTree named it one of their 8 Favorite Healthy Cookbooks of 2012
Yahoo! named it one of the Best Things They Bought in 2012