Roasting meat and vegetables is one of the best kitchen skills to acquire. The ability to cook with an oven is a valuable skill, that once mastered, allows you the cook to roast almost anything without a recipe. America’s Test Kitchen’s cookbook How to Roast Everything is the perfect tutorial for achieving this skill.Regardless of where you are in your cooking journey How to Roast Everything will help on many levels. If you are a new cook it will introduce to you the skills needed to roast well. Whereas for the seasoned cook, it will hone and develop this cooking technique with its signature Test Kitchen creativity and preciseness.
I was excited when I picked up this book because roasting is central to A Pleasant Little Kitchen. Whether it’s vegetables, meat or sometimes fruit, roasting is a weekly ritual during every season. I am always ready to improve my kitchen skills and I knew How to Roast Everything would help me do this.
I’ve cooked through a handful of recipes from this fantastic book and each one has been a complete success that has taught me how to roast smarter. These recipes are approachable with very specific directions for achieving the perfect outcome…which is everything I have come to expect from ATK.
The roasted spice-rubbed chicken was a stand-out among the recipes I made.First off, I’m a sucker for roasted chicken thighs and drumsticks. They are one of the perfect forms of comfort food, and something I cook frequently. This recipe in particular contained a few techniques that elevated the roasting game.
- slashing the chicken skin before seasoning with the spice rub
- refrigerating the chicken for at least 6 hours before roasting
- increasing the oven temperature from 425 to 500 degrees mid-roast
These suggestions will change the way I roast chicken. America’s Test Kitchen finds the best method to cook a specific meal while using an approachable technique. Recipes from ATK are always worthwhile, valuable and educational, which says a lot about the dedicated and very skilled cooks who develop the recipes in the Test Kitchen.
Other elements of this book that I found helpful were:
- the very detailed information pertaining to the different types of meats, such as particular cuts to purchase, how to butcher at home and brining techniques.
- the optional flavorings and ingredients listed with several roasted vegetable recipes.
- the additional instructions on particular recipes to help the cook walk-thru a tricky task, like butterflying a lobster tail (page 228 Roasted Stuffed Lobster Tails).
How to Roast Everything is a kitchen staple, just like roasting. Learn from the best and develop your roasting ability with America’s Test Kitchen by your side. I promise you will grow as a cook and get especially hungry for dinner.
3 tablespoons packed brown sugar 2 tablespoons chili powder 2 tablespoons paprika 1 tablespoon salt 2 teaspoons pepper 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoons cayenne pepper 5 pounds bone-in chicken pieces (split breasts cut in half, drumsticks, and/or thighs), trimmed for the raita 1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt 2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro 1 garlic clove, minced salt cayenne pepper
America's Test Kitchen Roasted Spice-Rubbed Chicken
3 tablespoons packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons paprika
1 tablespoon salt
2 teaspoons pepper
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
5 pounds bone-in chicken pieces (split breasts cut in half, drumsticks, and/or thighs), trimmed
for the raita
1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
1 garlic clove, minced