Shiny Cooking Recipe Reviews (Pg. 1) - Allrecipes.com (10880288)

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Impossible Garden Pie

Reviewed: May 6, 2009
"Impossible" is the operative word here, as the promised crust never materializes. Instead of "sinking to the bottom of the pan," the baking mix/egg/milk mixture remains on top, and the liquid in the tomatoes and asparagus keep it from ever baking to a bready texture - instead, it remains disconcertingly wet, even fully cooked. It still tastes pretty good, if not stellar, and the baking mix-with-veggies concept is promising, but this isn't the recipe to showcase that concept. Also, the description of the recipe is wrong: there aren't any "other spring garden vegetables" in this besides asparagus. Tomatoes and onions are summer/late summer vegetables.
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3 users found this review helpful

Sesame Green Beans

Reviewed: Feb. 17, 2009
Way, way way too much oil - and I have no qualms about adding oil to my food. The overwhelming amount of oil nearly wrecks the dish, and using extra virgin olive oil (which shouldn't be heated anyway) with sesame seeds makes no sense. The oil also makes the sesame seeds splatter messily out of the pan when you add the beans. I enjoyed the sesame flavor - though it was almost unnoticeable and would make it again with the following modifications to make it less greasy and add more sesame flavor: Simply toasting the sesame seeds briefly in a dry pan or with less than a teaspoon of canola. Then I'd remove the sesame seeds from the hot pan, put the green beans in, and return the seeds to the pan. Follow the rest of the directions as written, and at the end of cooking time add a teaspoon or so of sesame oil to bring out the sesame flavor.
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4 users found this review helpful

Russian Mushroom and Potato Soup

Reviewed: Dec. 11, 2008
Too salty - and I really like salt. I would cut it to 1 teaspoon next time or just let people salt their own. I did make it exactly as written, or rather in the spirit, because I made two small adjustments: I chopped the mushrooms into chunks instead of slicing them, and I had 1/4 cup of heavy cream so I used that and rounded out the "1 cup half and half" with 3/4 cup nonfat milk. I don't think either adjustment changed the intended taste of the recipe at all, so I feel confident that I'm rating it as written. Changes I may make in the future: A bit less butter. Combined with the half and half, it feels almost too rich. And I'd probably just go with milk. Of course, I'll be cutting the salt to 1/2 to 1 t. as mentioned. But! It's a very nice potato soup; the mushrooms and dill add a great depth.
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1 user found this review helpful

Black Bean and Couscous Salad

Reviewed: Nov. 1, 2008
This is just…wow. I made it three times in one week. It's not quite as quick as some have said, unless you're a really fast mixer and chopper, but it's still fast and easy to make. I'm sure the recipe is good as is, but I do do some things differently: Following the advice of others, I double the dressing except for the olive oil. Whole wheat couscous. Usually use green pepper as that's what I have around, used celery instead once. I enjoy cilantro but I have an allergic reaction to it, so I use it sparingly or use parsley instead. Two cups of corn instead of one, as that's the amount I have frozen my corn in. One can of black beans. Basically, it's very adaptable. Note: This is a very soft/comforting dish, and I imagine it would be even more so if you left out the crunchy peppers. As a vegetarian, I consider this a main dish thanks to the beans, and I can honestly say it's my absolute favorite Allrecipes main course find so far.
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3 users found this review helpful

Black Bean Huevos Rancheros

Reviewed: Jun. 3, 2008
Quick, easy, and awesome. I never imagined that egg + black beans would taste so good! I used my own canned salsa instead of making the pico de gallo. I've never cooked with chipotles before (though I've eaten dishes with that flavor in restaurants so I knew I liked it) so one canned, finely chopped, came to a bit over a teaspoon. The rest I laid out on waxed paper to freeze (and store later), and I froze the rest of the adobo sauce in a small container. Actually, in retrospect, I might freeze the sauce in ice cube trays, as it seems like a little bit would add nice complexity to sauces.
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7 users found this review helpful

Dilly Crab Salad

Reviewed: Aug. 27, 2007
I didn't care for this. Granted, I changed the recipe from 1-1/2 c. each of sour cream and mayonnaise to 1 c. each but the awfulness stands: it was still too creamy…and I like sour cream and mayo. I won't complain about the bland consistency of the dish (no crunch) as I was looking for a springboard from which to add other ingredients, but this is certainly not it. Helpful tip: Try rinsing it off if too creamy. With the globs of sour cream and mayo gone it's more palatable.
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2 users found this review helpful

Zucchini Alfredo

Reviewed: Aug. 5, 2007
Very bland. The only thing I did differently was use 4 cloves of garlic, since I like garlic. However, zucchini and cream cheese don't have much going on at all, and the basil isn't enough to add the depth this dish needs. Alfredo sauces rely on a lot of parmesan cheese to round out the flavor, and I suspect adding at least 1/4 c. of parmesan may help this sauce. The lemon pepper seasoning another reviewer mentioned may do the trick too. However, I don't think I'll bother with this again as I don't feel like fussing with the recipe to try to make it taste good.
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2 users found this review helpful

Big Guy Strawberry Pie

Reviewed: Jun. 15, 2007
Should the margarine be cold and cut in, or softened and mixed in completely? Who knows? It doesn't say to grease the pie pan, even though it's absolutely necessary. I greased mine per reviews and it still stuck to it completely in several spots. It is impossible to pull an intact "piece" of pie out of the pan using this crust. And, as most reviewers have mentioned, it bakes not in 8-10 minutes but takes nearly 20 minutes to lightly brown. Once you get the crust out of the pan in its little tiny crumbs and pieces, you realize this dessert is better served in a bowl rather than on a plate, as a kind of strawberry jell with shortbread crumbles mixed in. While tasty, the fact it can't be served in wedges makes it in no way a "pie." The strawberry-jell mixture is tasty and pretty much the same thing you'll find in any strawberry pie recipe, such as in my Betty Crocker cookbook. However, it's impossible to "pour" the cooled jell over the strawberries because it has...cooled, and thickened. Do what another reviewer said and mix the berries with the jell before putting into the crust. I had been hoping to find an easy, non-pastry crust for chilled pies for those times I don't want to go to the hassle of pastry. This is not the crust I was looking for.
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2 users found this review helpful

Strawberry Freezer Jam

Reviewed: Jun. 9, 2007
This is the recipe that comes in every package of Sure-Jell but I'm not complaining; it's nice to have it online too. I'm just reviewing it to note two things: First, the recipe is for jam, not jelly. Submitter uses the terms interchangeably, but to clarify, jam has fruit pieces in it while jelly is a puree, so be sure not to puree your berries when making it. Secondly, sometimes when preserving things, it's important to do just one batch at a time, but this recipe will work fine doubled, yay! I've calculated the cost of strawberry freezer jam and around here it comes to a little over a dollar per 12-ounce jar, not counting the cost of the jars themselves. That's well worth it to have the year-round treat of easy, delicious, homemade jam!
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399 users found this review helpful

Best Brownies

Reviewed: May 21, 2007
I made these exactly as instructed, except I didn't bother with the frosting. I have no idea what some other reviewers are smoking, because, made as directed, these are the ideal brownie. Slightly fudgy and chewy, with that crackly top that seems to be the very definition of "brownie." The best part is they satisfy that craving for something rich and chocolatey while simultaneously being utterly convenient - you dirty a saucepan, an 8 x 8 or 9 x 9 pan, a few measuring cups/spoons, and possibly a small mixing bowl if, like me, you decide to stir up the eggs/sugar/vanilla before adding to the butter. It's also the perfect recipe size as I wasn't looking for a giant pan of brownies, and it uses ingredients you probably have on hand. I don't keep baking chocolate around, but I always have cocoa! My suggestion is to just try the recipe as written, and no need to frost them.
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127 users found this review helpful

Rhubarb Cobbler with Oat Dumplings

Reviewed: May 6, 2007
Rhubarb season just began and already I'm overwhelmed with tons of it! For the year's inaugural rhubarb dish, I decided to try this cobbler. I was intrigued by the whole-grain dumplings atop it, and I was looking for a fairly tart preparation that would allow the sourness of the rhubarb to shine through. For comparison, my mom's first rhubarb dish this year was classic rhubarb crisp-it's tasty but very, very sweet. I don't think the purpose of cooking with an ingredient is to smush its extremest qualities, but rather to soften their harshness. I picked this recipe because it asked for much less sugar than others do, though there is a lot of hidden sugar in the orange juice. The verdict: the dumplings are just lovely. I will use this preparation in other recipes calling for a cobbler topping in the future. As for the filling, it's not perfect, which dropped it to four stars. While not off-putting at all, I just wasn't pleased with the orange-juice flavor on top of the rhubarb flavor. It just seemed to add an extra tart-fruit not that isn't needed. In the future I will try halving the orange juice, or going all water. I'd rather add a little extra granulated sugar if necessary than taste the orange in this. Also, in spite of all the stirring and thickening, the rhubarb mixture remained more liquidy than I'd like when out of the oven (and even after refrigeration), but that's not a deal-breaker. Overall, it's a really good dessert that with a small tweak or two could be perfect.
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20 users found this review helpful

Breakfast Burritos

Reviewed: Feb. 24, 2007
Very handy to have freezing/reheating instructions. I made these specifically to have a breakfast food ready in the freezer. They reheat beautifully, tasting better to me that way than when first made. The saltiness of bacon and cheese make added salt unnecessary. While not perfect nutritionally—high sodium, high fat, nitrites, etc.—for around 325 cals you get 20 grams of protein along with that nasty stuff. Throw in whole wheat tortillas and you have a perfectly fine once-in-a-while heat and eat breakfast that beats the pants off of the fast food versions.
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39 users found this review helpful

Tasty Buns

Reviewed: Dec. 30, 2006
A keeper. Soft, light, and tasty. I used half butter and half olive oil for the oil, and substitued 2 cups of whole wheat flour for 2 cups of white. A very easy bread recipe too! The only thing was the bottoms got a little browner than I'd consider perfect, but I don't think that's a fault of the recipe.
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3 users found this review helpful

Homemade Black Bean Veggie Burgers

Reviewed: Dec. 30, 2006
Okay, these are awesome. I hate the price of the supermarket veggie burgers and these are even better! I made the recipe exactly as directed and it was perfect. I don't have a food processor so I used my Pampered Chef chopper to finely mince the veggies. Unlike other reviewers, I had no problem getting the mixture to stick together—this may have been because I squeezed the excess water from the onions and peppers before adding them (I used pureed garlic). They formed up beautifully and didn't stick at all to a sprayed pan in the oven. I'm thinking of making a double batch, baking it, and freezing them once these first four patties are gone. They would be SO handy to have on hand for those nights you don't want to cook. I ate mine on the "Tasty Buns" recipe also found on this site. This recipe makes a large patty, which is the perfect size for the largish buns.
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513 users found this review helpful

Creamy Au Gratin Potatoes

Reviewed: Dec. 11, 2006
Made exactly as directed, only change being mincing the onion instead of rings, as I don't like the texture of onions in large chunks. One reason I chose this recipe was because I prefer whole, natural foods (avoiding processed cheese and cans of soup, for example), and it fit the bill for that well enough. Verdict: it's quite possibly the best cheesy-potato side I have ever tasted. Some reviewers have called it bland, but I prefer to term it comfort food. It's a creamy, cheesy, potato side dish. It doesn't have to have a special bite or kick to it, or evoke any particular area of the world. I adore all sorts of cuisines—Thai, Middle Eastern, Italian, Spanish, Japanese, you name it—but once in a while a lightly seasoned dish that lets you taste the potato, the cheese, the simple flour-and-milk sauce...once in a while that simplicity is the pefect complement to your meal.
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2360 users found this review helpful

Asian Salmon

Reviewed: Dec. 5, 2006
I used 2x the marinade as others recommended (actually, used 1 lb. of salmon). Other changes I'd make would be to add a little ginger as others have said, and I'd use green onions instead of regular minced—I dislike the little crunchiness and the texture the regular onions give. My own mistake was using frozen salmon, blech! That's not the recipe's fault though! Oh, I'd also flip the fish over skin side up, broil it for about 5 minutes first, peel off the skin, spoon marinade on top, and bake for another 25 or so. I didn't make the dill rice, which honestly seems a really weird accompaniment for an asian-seasoned salmon. I just made some simple quinoa with veg broth. Next time I'll use fresh salmon. Actually might try lime juice in place of the rice vinegar just for a change of pace, although it was fabulous as is. Did I mention the marinade was really yummy?
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1 user found this review helpful

Focaccia Bread

Reviewed: Nov. 17, 2006
Should have read reviews first. It's been a long time since I made a yeast bread and the lack of proofing in the recipe didn't leap out at me. Didn't rise at all, obviously. Due to this egregious error, this recipe does not deserve the near-five-star rating it has, as the recipe as written produces not bread, but a hockey puck.
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7 users found this review helpful

 
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