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People who like to eat well without the fuss have always turned to Mark Bittman for his trademark pared-down elegance and contemporary style. In 404 Express, Bittman, author of the popular New York Times column "The Minimalist" and the bestselling How to Cook Everything series, offers readers a new level of ease with recipes that that are no more than a paragraph long.

The 404 seasonal recipes are sophisticated as they are simple: on a cold winter night, warm up with White Bean Stew served over crusty slices of oil-rubbed baguette. Welcome spring with Shrimp with Asparagus, Dill or Spice Poached Eggs and Truffled Arugula Prosciutto Salad. Make the most of summer produce with Scallop and Peach Ceviche or Apricot Cream Upside Down Pie, and try Salmon and Sweet Potato with Coconut Curry Sauce or Broiled Brussels Sprouts with Hazelnuts when the air starts to cool.

The beautiful, two color cookbook also includes Bittman's complete guide to stocking your pantry, menus for a variety of occasions, and recipe lists that span the seasons.

Topics: Cookbooks

Published: Simon & Schuster on Jul 7, 2009
ISBN: 9781416578987
List price: $13.99
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Mark Bittman's unusual book practices some of the decade's cutting edge preaching about eating healthy by providing a year's worth of great--not good mind you, but great--recipes. A few things make this book unusual. First, it is written for busy people who don't have a lot of time to cook. Most recipes take twenty minutes or less. Second, it is organized by season, which encourages cooking fresh food. Winter dishes are more likely to include root vegetables and summer meals incorporate plentiful tomatoes. Third, Bittman's recipes are stripped down to their bare essentials and exceedingly simple to make. He advises a bit of this and pinch of that, using precise measurements only when absolutely needed. Most recipes are a paragraph. The mimimalist approach here is classic Bittman.Kitchen Express compares very favorably to cookbooks that make lowfat and other health claims. Most recipes rely on flavor rather than fat and salt to please the palate. Although Bittman does not give calorie and fat content in his recipes, I'd be willing to bet that they are healthier on average than Cooking Light's. Finally, the dozens of Kitchen Express recipes I've tried are absolutely delicious. The flavor combinations and textures all work. If there is any weakness in the book, it is presentation. Dishes are not beautiful but then Bittman is not Martha Stewart. He is after flavor and he gets it. My family includes professional cooks and we are a pretty tough lot when it comes to cookbooks. We love this one for its ease and the number of brilliant cooking ideas Bittman offers. I'd recommend it to rank amateurs and professionals alike.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Recipes distilled to their essence: this is good to eat; here's how to make it. I am the biggest Mark Bittman fanboy, and I'm not ashamed to admit it.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.

Reviews

Mark Bittman's unusual book practices some of the decade's cutting edge preaching about eating healthy by providing a year's worth of great--not good mind you, but great--recipes. A few things make this book unusual. First, it is written for busy people who don't have a lot of time to cook. Most recipes take twenty minutes or less. Second, it is organized by season, which encourages cooking fresh food. Winter dishes are more likely to include root vegetables and summer meals incorporate plentiful tomatoes. Third, Bittman's recipes are stripped down to their bare essentials and exceedingly simple to make. He advises a bit of this and pinch of that, using precise measurements only when absolutely needed. Most recipes are a paragraph. The mimimalist approach here is classic Bittman.Kitchen Express compares very favorably to cookbooks that make lowfat and other health claims. Most recipes rely on flavor rather than fat and salt to please the palate. Although Bittman does not give calorie and fat content in his recipes, I'd be willing to bet that they are healthier on average than Cooking Light's. Finally, the dozens of Kitchen Express recipes I've tried are absolutely delicious. The flavor combinations and textures all work. If there is any weakness in the book, it is presentation. Dishes are not beautiful but then Bittman is not Martha Stewart. He is after flavor and he gets it. My family includes professional cooks and we are a pretty tough lot when it comes to cookbooks. We love this one for its ease and the number of brilliant cooking ideas Bittman offers. I'd recommend it to rank amateurs and professionals alike.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Recipes distilled to their essence: this is good to eat; here's how to make it. I am the biggest Mark Bittman fanboy, and I'm not ashamed to admit it.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
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