The New Whole Grain Cookbook: Terrific Recipes Using Farro, Quinoa, Brown Rice, Barley, and Many Other Delicious and Nutritious Grains

August 27, 2010 · Posted in Bestselling Cooking Books 

Product Description
From whole wheat, oats, and rice to farro, barley, and quinoa, no grain is left unturned in this compendium of more than 75 healthful recipes. There’s a tasty dish for every meal of the day: Quick Skillet Flatbreads made with millet or teff for breakfast, or a hearty dinner entr e of lamb and rye berries braised in red wine. Even desserts get the whole-grain touch with such sweets as Chocolate-Chunk Buckwheat Cookies. A source list helps find the more unusual grains… More >>

The New Whole Grain Cookbook: Terrific Recipes Using Farro, Quinoa, Brown Rice, Barley, and Many Other Delicious and Nutritious Grains

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5 Responses to “The New Whole Grain Cookbook: Terrific Recipes Using Farro, Quinoa, Brown Rice, Barley, and Many Other Delicious and Nutritious Grains”

  1. J. Fuchs on August 27th, 2010 8:09 pm

    I got this book the day it came out and I’ve probably used it twice. I’m of the feeling that you can’t have enough recipes which make use of whole grains, especially the less common ones like quinoa, amaranth and farro. Yet when I feel like cooking whole grains, I find myself reaching for Rebecca Wood’s “The Splendid Grain,” which has, to my taste, better info and recipes and a much better layout. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve liked what I’ve cooked from this book, but don’t find it all that inspiring. As an example, the quinoa paella is quite good, but the recipe calls for fresh artichokes, which makes this dish affordable only during the very short artichoke season. No mention of whether you can substitute canned artichokes successfully. For the record, I did, and they tasted, well, canned, of course. I would have liked an alternative. In general, the recipes are rather complicated for the results, whereas in the Splendid Grain, they are far simpler and more varied. Also, this book is small and impossible to keep open during cooking, plus the recipes are on multiple pages. It’s clear that cost was an issue and someone (publisher?) decided that pictures were more important than an easy-to-use layout. I’m happy to have this in my kitchen, but it feels like someone rushed this out and cut corners. I wanted to like it more than I actually do. Recommended, but not as a first choice for whole grain cooking.
    Rating: 3 / 5

  2. Karen Fairchild on August 27th, 2010 9:38 pm

    The reasons in a nutshell to love this book:

    1. I can generally find the ingredients in small town Iowa.

    2. The recipes taste good, are simply created, and are pretty darned healthy.

    3. The pictures are great, and the text is easy to read and informative.

    4. I am no chef. I cook for three little girls and a husband, and all recipes I’ve tried from Robin’s cookbook have definite positive approval ratings. (It’s hard to please all the kids all at the same time.)

    5. Lots of substitution suggestions help me out greatly as I generally fly by the seat of my pantry.

    I had some whole grains (quinoa, barley, and wheat berries, I believe) hanging around that only were used once in a blue moon whenever I thought, hey, maybe I can soak them, cook them, and what the hey, throw them in some soup or something. I had these in my pantry because I love to collect food items at the nearest Mennonite bulk food store, which is precisely where I procured these whole grains, but that is where the relationship between me and my grains ended unless they met my soup. When I have tried finding recipes for whole grains in the past, I was usually faced with some critical seasonings or ingredients that just did not exist around here in the town in Iowa I live in, you know, all 2000 of us in this dinky town. We just don’t have things like fish paste or even not-so-exotic items that I’ve run into in my other cookbooks that mention whole grains. Alas, my adventure with cooking with whole grains stopped before it ever started.

    I received this cookbook in my hot little hands and my eyes popped wide open. The recipes are good, varied, and simple enough for me to use. Finally, something besides soup to throw my whole grains in! I’ve tried a new recipe about each week since receiving the book with my favorite thus far probably being the premade biscuit mix (after the biscuits are made, of course). There are also handy tips on how to prepare the grains along with the recipes, a feature I appreciated.

    The book’s recipes pass my family’s taste test, which is a great thing. I am always trying to encourage healthy eating and lots of fiber. Thank you for this wonderful cookbook, Robin!
    Rating: 5 / 5

  3. LUTHER KRUEGER on August 28th, 2010 12:20 am

    The first experience I had with whole grain cooking was at a now long defunct restaurant on the West Bank of Minneapolis in the early 1980’s. While the meals I ate there were very tasty, they were presented in a way that made you feel you had to be part of a radical political movement or obscure religious sect. It was about the only place in town to get such fare, so it was hard to imagine whole grains going mainstream.

    This book imagines it, and makes it real. I’m not much more than an occasional cooker–not at all a chef–and I rely on the clarity of recipes when I cook. Not only are the recipes clear, they build on the fundamental aspects of the grains as they employ. The brief but thorough histories and natures of each grain in the front of the book took away any fears I had about not getting enough flavor out of them. The recipes cover such a wide variety of entrees, desserts, appetizers etc. that I think anyone new to whole grains will read this book and stock up on whole grains regularly.
    Rating: 5 / 5

  4. Susan Doeden on August 28th, 2010 12:33 am

    As I paged through this just-released soft-covered cookbook, I realized many of Asbell’s recipes were just what I was looking for – flavorful and healthful with long-lasting stick-to-your ribs satisfaction.

    Robin Asbell makes it so simple to start experimenting with whole grains as her ingredient lists include products that are easy to find and her directions are uncomplicated and clear enough for all cooks to enjoy success. The creative photography and pleasant colors used throughout the book make you want to keep turning the pages. The book is brimming with recipes that tempt the breakfast, lunch or dinner taste buds. Barley, brown rice, whole wheat and rolled oats are the more familiar whole grains appearing in the book. There are also recipes that will invite you to try something new, maybe teff or amaranth.

    I’ve been cooking through “The New Whole Grains Cookbook,” and each dish makes me anxious to try the next recipe.

    Rating: 5 / 5

  5. C. D. Watson on August 28th, 2010 2:25 am

    I borrowed this cookbook from my local library to try it out before buying it. I was impressed by the layout, the history of the grains presented, and the variety of recipes. There are a couple of caveats:

    1) Aside from the whole grains (which I expected to have to search for), some of the ingredients are a little hard to find in the small town where I live. Fresh ginger root? Check. Miso? Er, what’s that???? And, of the ingredients that are more common, some are rather expensive. Maple syrup, for instance. Why maple and not, say, molasses or honey or even brown sugar?

    2) For the number of recipes presented, there’s no reason why each recipe shouldn’t have a picture of the finished product.

    3) Some of the more common grains that I can find weren’t presented at all, i.e. wheat berries. I actually have some that I would like to cook (rather than grind into flour) but can’t find good recipes. It’s why I picked up this book!

    Those things being said (along with the cautions other reviewers have noted), overall I did like this cookbook and will most likely purchase it down the road.
    Rating: 4 / 5

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