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Sandra Lee Semi-Homemade Cooking 3    by Sandra Lee order for
Sandra Lee Semi-Homemade Cooking 3
by Sandra Lee
Order:  USA  Can
Meredith, 2007 (2007)
* * *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

Here's another cookbook, Sandra Lee Semi-Homemade Cooking 3, just in time for your Christmas gift list. Sandra Lee states on the cover of her new book that the recipes enclosed are 'simple, speedy & flavorful favorites that taste like they're made from scratch.' If the finished products are as good as the photographs, we're all in for good eating.

Sandra Lee tells us that her series 'grew out of a desire I shared with my grandmother to try new things, to make each meal a joyous occasion in whatever time was available.' We can all thank her grandmother for spurring Lee on to produce the cookbooks in her Semi-Homemade series.

Beginning this wonderful new cookbook are Lee's suggestions for stocking your pantry. Those pages alone are enough to get the salivary glands working overtime. The eight chapters cover Comfort Foods, Italian, Mexican, French, Soul Food, Pan-Asian, Restaurant Remakes and Gourmet, and Secret Recipes from Friends and Family. In all of these recipes, she uses her 'unique 70/30 philosophy: Mix 70% quality prepackaged foods with 30% fresh ingredients, toss in a dash of your own ingenuity and cook up something that's 100% fast and fabulous!'

My first venture will be the Cafeteria-Style Macaroni and Cheese. Prep time 15 minutes. Cook time 60 minutes. Makes 12 servings. Maybe a PB&J Martini would go with that. Give me Italian any time and I'm a happy camper. I expect the Ravioli with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Brown Butter Walnuts to make me delirious - with 5 minutes prep time and 10 minutes cook time, anyone with a tight schedule could expect raves for their cooking. Fancy Chinese? How about Cashew Chicken with 15 minutes prep time and 5 minutes cook time? Dessert? Raspberry Chocolate Wontons take only 10 minutes prep time and 15 minutes cook time.

Perusing the dishes presented brings out the desire to tie on the old apron and give this philosophy a try. I know you will be more than satisfied and ready to try more. Your copy of this cookbook will become dog-eared and food splattered in no time. Whatever you fancy, Sandra Lee proves time and again that combining the prepackaged and fresh can produce healthy and delicious food with little time spent on the effort.

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