Dinner: The Playbook: A 30-Day Plan for Mastering the Art of the Family Meal

August 27, 2014 - Comment

Three signs you need this book: 1) Chicken fingers qualify as adventurous. (Hey, they’re not nuggets.) 2) You live in fear of the white stuff touching the green stuff. 3) Family dinner? What’s family dinner? When Jenny Rosenstrach’s kids were little, her dinner rotation looked like this: Pasta, Pizza, Pasta, Burgers, Pasta. It made her

Three signs you need this book:
1) Chicken fingers qualify as adventurous. (Hey, they’re not nuggets.)
2) You live in fear of the white stuff touching the green stuff.
3) Family dinner? What’s family dinner?

When Jenny Rosenstrach’s kids were little, her dinner rotation looked like this: Pasta, Pizza, Pasta, Burgers, Pasta. It made her crazy—not only because of the mind-numbing repetition, but because she loved to cook and missed her prekid, ketchup-free dinners.  Her solution? A family adventure: She and her husband, Andy, would cook thirty new dishes in a single month—and her kids would try them all. Was it nuts for two working parents to take on this challenge? Yes. But did it transform family dinner from stressful grind to happy ritual? Completely. Here, Rosenstrach—creator of the beloved blog and book Dinner: A Love Story—shares her story, offering weekly meal plans, tons of organizing tips, and eighty-plus super-simple, kid-vetted recipes.

Stuck in a rut? Ready to reboot dinner? Whether you’ve never turned on a stove or you’re just starved for inspiration, this book is your secret weapon.

Advance praise for Dinner: The Playbook
 
“Jenny Rosenstrach has truly mastered the art of the happy family dinner. This is the most sensible advice on cooking for kids I’ve ever seen: no gimmicks, no tricks, just practical advice for working parents. I wish this book had been around when my son was small.”—Ruth Reichl

“This book is for anyone who loves the promise of a home-cooked dinner but gets bogged down by the day-to-day reality of it: picky kids, picky spouses, the extinction of the nine-to-five workday, and the pressure—oh, the pressure—to get it on the table before everyone collapses into a hangry (hungry + angry) meltdown. Which is to say that this book is for me, me, me. And I bet it’s for you too.”—Deb Perelman, author of The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook

“Well, Jenny Rosenstrach, on the behalf of my whole family, thanks for the most practical—and yet still inspired—cookbook on our shelf. You are singularly responsible for my return to the kitchen.”—Kelly Corrigan, author of Glitter and Glue

“As a mother of two young children, I was always racked with guilt when serving hummus and crackers for dinner or suggesting yet another night of scrambled eggs. But this brilliant guide is—no exaggeration—changing my life. I was more than happy to let Jenny be my boss for thirty days and whip me—and my family’s dinner—into shape. Think of this book as the world’s most delicious boot camp.”—Joanna Goddard, blogger, A Cup of Jo

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Comments

A. Looby "SvleMommy" says:

Solve the What’s For Dinner? fight! I have been planning our meals for a while, so this didn’t really give me anything new as far as that goes, but it is still a good reminder and has good recipes in the back. The book challenges the reader to undergo a 30 day family dinner plan. It has easy, mostly 30 minute, recipes to help you get started. The book will help you learn to organize a meal plan, shop for the meal plan, prepare for the week in advance and get a home-cooked meal on the table, every night.Family dinners are essential. It’s time to come together, to laugh, to talk, to just be together. There are so many studies out there that prove that family dinners are beneficial for children.The meals in the book do not require a super skill level in cooking. They’re easy and seem to be kid friendly. There is a lot of seafood, chicken and even several meatless meals. The majority of the recipes have notes at the end with suggested sides, how to prep parts of the meal ahead of time, how to store…

Denise Patterson says:

If you used to love to cook before the kids came along, but it seems tedious now… …then this is the book for you! This is the second of her books based on her popular Dinner: A Love Story blog. The first book mostly tells how SHE did it, this second book breaks it down & tells you how YOU can do it. It’s a menu-planning guide for giving yourself a 30-day reboot to enjoy cooking again. It is NOT a beginner cook’s menu planning guide! This will have you in the kitchen daily, breaking down recipes into prep steps to pre-prep as much as possible, AND getting the rest of the family involved in cooking too. An experienced cook can bread cutlets while directing a child to wash greens and remember to make twice as much rice so you have some for Tuesday’s dish, but a beginning cook might end up weeping in a corner with all that going on at once! You have to know what you are doing & be organized enough to keep on top of a lot of little details.The first thing you do is pick a start date (she suggests the following Sunday, whenever that may be), and…

Andrea L. Heyart says:

A Meal Planner Newbie’s Guide I am a meal planning maniac. For three years now I have printed out blank calendars and filled out entire months with the meals I plan to serve each day. I spend about four to five hours each month looking up recipes, thinking back to favorite meals, making shopping lists and utilizing overlapping ingredients. I was hoping this book might give me fresh ideas and help me to streamline the process. Instead it gave me a few novel tips, one or two recipes my family might enjoy and some sweet personal antidotes.This book is more for the beginner of advance meal planning. If you’ve been planning your dinners for more than a few months, then this book won’t revolutionize anything for you. That being said, it does have several recipes you might enjoy, stories of a kindred spirit, and a few tips and perspectives that might make it worth the read.The author offers ideas to get children interested in trying new foods and ingredients and that chapter alone should sell this…

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