Quick & Kosher: A Cookbook Review and Giveaway

I don't get many unannounced visitors during the day. So when the doorbell rings around 11am on a weekday, I know it's my favorite unexpected visitor: the UPS guy. The kids and I dash to the door to open it with jittery anticipation, as if we're each being surprised with a present. Being that I'm a hopeless online shopper, I know to expect packages popping up in front of my door, but I don't always know what's in them, so that element of surprise feels like we're getting fun, new things. The excitement usually ceases when I sign off on a package of diapers and wipes.

Except for last week when Mr. UPS handed over a heavy, square box when I know I didn't buy anything (I was on one of my short-lived self-imposed shopping breaks). I promptly opened it up to find two brand new cookbooks. That was a wonderful start to my afternoon.




While the kids were being ignored entertaining themselves, I sat on the couch to savor Jamie Geller's two cookbooks: Quick & Kosher: Recipes from the Bride Who Knew Nothing, and Quick & Kosher: Meals in Minutes.

Quick & Kosher: Recipes from the Bride Who Knew Nothing

In her very first cookbook, Jamie shares her journey from a career-driven cosmo girl whose idea of a meal is to order takeout from her favorite New York restaurant, to a young wife who navigates through the kitchen with ease and confidence, and can easily converse about the difference between beating your egg with a fork versus a whisk. She teaches you everything she's learned openly and honestly and humorously shares glimpses into her life so you can learn and relate.

Quick and Kosher features a wide variety of recipes that range from family style, traditional (think gefilte fish, kugel, and potato latkes) to modern gourmet (pistachio crusted baby lamb chops).  It's really an excellent cookbook for the novice as well as the experienced family chef. The recipes are simple, concise and practically foolproof. Jamie even gives you great tips along the way like how to keep your avocado from browning and how to pick the perfect eggplant.

I liked the clean layout of the recipe pages, as well as the organized way the sections were divided. Jamie even included interviews with various food experts at the end (butcher, winemaker, etc.).And if that wasn't enough, she simplified your holiday preparations by including a menu plan for each holiday.




Quick & Kosher: Meals in Minutes

Jamie wasn't done working, a few years later she brought us Quick and Kosher: Meals in Minutes, a much needed companion for today's busy women.

What stood out to me the most in this sequel is the quality of the styling and photography. What can I say, pictures are the first thing I look at in a cookbook. The photos entice you to write down the ingredients list and commit to actually making the recipe, and when it's promised to be under 30 minutes, it's a done deal.

Meals in Minutes is also packed with timeless information, inspiring wisdom, and down-to-earth advice. Written in Geller's upbeat, contagious positive spirit, you laugh at her tales and mishaps in the kitchen and learn how to effortless and elegantly entertain guests while keeping your cool and building spiritual Jewish home.

What I appreciated most in this cookbook is that Jamie didn't give you a shortage of ideas. Almost every page features two recipes (a main and a side dish) and a photo. She even divided each section by the amount of time it would take to prepare the meal, rather than by the food category the recipe falls under. So if you're looking to spend no more than 25 minutes in the kitchen (because you're allergic to the stove or just running short on time) you need only look in the 25-minute-meal section.




Now the true test of any cookbook is actually making a recipe and gauging its success. Well, dear friends, I made the Mediterranean Frittata from QK Meals in Minutes (it's on p. 201, in case you were wondering). I will share it with you very soon. Here's a sneak peek.



Overall, I would say these are two excellent cookbooks to add to your collection, present to a new bride, or gift to someone else. So I'm gifting one to you! 

At first, I thought I would keep one and give the other away, but I'm so indecisive and couldn't pick which one I'd rather you have so I decided to give you both.

HOW TO ENTER

1. Leave a comment. Tell me whatever you'd like: your own favorite quick and easy "meals in minutes" or how your life would be complete with this new set of cookbooks. Or just say hello.

For Extra Entries:

1. Follow The Kosher Spoon by subscribing to the email list here and/or to the RSS feed

2. Follow @thekosherspoon on Twitter

3. Tweet about the giveaway: Enter to #win @jamiegeller Quick and #Kosher Cookbooks @thekosherspoon #giveaway http://bit.ly/MNLtCE

4. Email and/or post on your Facebook wall about the giveaway: Win Jamie Geller's Quick and Kosher Cookbooks @ The Kosher Spoon http://bit.ly/MNLtCE

5. Follow Jamie on twitter @joyofkosher. I must add that she is one of the sweetest online personas I've come across. She answers all her comments on her and Tamar Grenger's website: joyofkosher and replies to all the tweets she gets. Superwoman! She's also moving to Israel, writing a third cookbook, and mothers young children.

So many ways to increase your chances!

Just leave a comment for every entry, and if you already follow TKS, then leave a comment saying so.

Giveaway starts on July 6, 2012 and will run until July 15, 2012 at 11:59pm PST.

Official Rules:

Giveaway is open to U.S. residents only.

To enter leave a comment.

One winner with a valid entry will be selected at random. I will email the winner and they will have up to 3 days to claim their prize or another winner will be selected. 

One winner will be selected at random via random.org

The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning.

No purchase necessary.

Disclaimer:  I was provided with the cookbooks for the purpose of doing a review and giveaway. All opinions are my own.







29 comments:

  1. I recently got a set in the mail. I can't wait to try this recipe!

    My dining life is all about meals in minutes.

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  2. Great review, wonderful choice making the frittata. The oregano chicken was a surprise hit for me too.

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  3. One of my favorite quick meals is seared tuna over a composed beautiful salad (use whatever you have but arrange on large plate beautifully.) Add a citrus ponzu sauce or just olive oil and fresh lemon juice, a little salt and pepper and some good bread on the side and you are done in minutes. I made this for dinner last night and added a simple miso soup which is done in minutes. Yummy and it looks like an expensive entree at a swanky restaurant. Do make sure the tuna is as fresh as possible - coat both sides with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper and sear in a hot pan with a little olive oil for approx 2 minutes on each side. Do not overcook or you will have dry tuna and you might as well have opened a can.

    I would love to get Jamie's cookbooks.

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  4. I keep homemade pesto and gnocchi in the freezer-- just heat and saute a side of greens for a delicious healthy meal.

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  5. I LOVE JAIMIE'S FIRST COOKBOOK AND WOULD LOVE TO SEE THE SECOND ONE.

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  6. I would love the meals in minutes! I am always trying to find quick dinners!

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  7. i love jamie geller. i get her magazines and her daily e-mails!! Ive tasted some of her recipes from the first cookbook and I have been wanting it ever since!!! The chocolate banana cake... yummmmmmm but i dont hvae the recipe...
    guilamoyal@gmail.com

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  8. I would love either of these cookbooks! I subscribe to the Joy of Kosher daily recipe email, and everything I've made from those recipes have been fantastic.

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  9. Extra entry #1 - Subscribed to the Kosher Spoon

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  10. Extra entry #2 - Followed @thekosherspoon on Twitter (I'm @Nedra)

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  11. Extra entry #3 - already follow @joyofkosher

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  12. I would like either one. It would be the beginning of my non existant collection of cook books.

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  13. I would love Quick & Kosher: Recipes from the Bride Who Knew Nothing !!
    I already follow @joyofkosher on twitter :)(@devorahgs)

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  14. I would love the second cookbook, I already have the first one and it's a winner!

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  15. I Love Cookbooks!! I want!!;)

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  16. Meals in Minutes would definitely be helpful! so sweet of you to give them away ;)

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  17. Would love to have these cookbooks!

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  18. So excited to have found your blog, and I would love a new cookbook!

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  19. Nice blog, I love your photos and always looking for good new kosher recipes! Oh and I could REALLY use a quick & easy cookbook, seems like all the cookbooks are long & complicated and frankly I don't have the time, energy, or patience for those!

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  20. I'd love to add this to my collection of cookbooks! Thanks for the giveaway!
    Digicats {at} Sbcglobal {dot} Net

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  21. I follow JoyofKosher on Twitter as MsCarolsueA
    Digicats {at} Sbcglobal {dot} Net

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  22. I subscribe to your newsletter via e-mail and with Yahoo Reader
    Digicats {at} Sbcglobal {dot} Net

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  23. I follow The KosherSpoon on Twitter as MsCarolsueA
    Digicats {at} Sbcglobal {dot} Net

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  24. I posted on my Facebook Page (Carolsue Anderson)
    https://www.facebook.com/MsCarolsueA/posts/363990907006082
    Digicats {at} Sbcglobal {dot} Net

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  25. Hi, just found your blog and I'm excited to go through it

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  26. I'd love to give some new recipes a try. Thanks for the giveaway!

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  27. I love cooking and baking there's nothing like new cook books :)

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  28. Hi...
    My inspiration and art is your creativity in the kitchen.
    I am so proud of you.
    Oh...and those cookbooks would look really good in my new kitchen. Hahaha
    Your sister-in-law

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  29. Sina!!! Thank you so much for this review and for your comments. It's easy to be receptive and warm to you and to this incredible community of kosher foodies. I am always so touched when someone takes the time to comment, it means so much to me as I am sure you feel the same way. I love your blog and your passion and your pictures. Thank you again!

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