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Weekend Cooking: Robin Takes 5

October 30, 2011

If you ever find yourself standing in your kitchen at 5:00, wondering what in the world to fix for dinner, then you need to check out Robin Miller‘s new cookbook, Robin Takes 5.   This fantastic cookbook contains 500 recipes that can be made quickly, only require 5 ingredients, and are under 500 calories each.   Talk about a great concept!

A quick glance through the cookbook shows that most recipes take easy to find ingredients and are for dishes your family will eat.  Recipes are divided by types; soups and stews, pizzas and flatbreads, pasta and rice, chicken and turkey, beef and pork, seafood, side dishes, and desserts.  Nutrition information is included with each recipe.  There are a few color photographs, but most recipes are not pictured.  There’s also a metric conversion table and an index in the back of the book.

There are so many recipes that sound good, like Pork Tenderloin with Pineapple Teriyaki Sauce, Spaghetti with Olives and Feta, and Spinach with Toasted Pecans and Blue Cheese.  We decided to try the Grilled Chicken with Tomato-Olive Salsa and found the directions to be clear and easy to follow.  The recipe was simple and the results were delicious!  We’ll definitely be making this recipe again and will be trying out many of the others.  If you’re looking for some fast and easy new recipes, then you definitely need to check out Robin Takes 5!

Grilled Chicken with Tomato-Olive Salsa

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 5 ounces each)
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 large ripe beefsteak tomatoes, diced
½ cup pimento-stuffed olives, diced (for variety, use any kind of stuffed olives you want)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano

Preheat stovetop grill pan or griddle over medium-high heat, or preheat an outdoor grill to medium-high.

Brush the chicken all over with the oil and season both sides with salt and freshly ground black pepper.  Grill the chicken for 3 to 5 minutes per side, until cooked through.

Meanwhile, combine the tomatoes, olives, basil, and oregano in a medium bowl and toss. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.  Serve the chicken with the salsa spooned over the top.

Weekend Cooking is hosted by Beth Fish Reads and is open to anyone who has any kind of food-related post to share: Book (novel, nonfiction) reviews, cookbook reviews, movie reviews, recipes, random thoughts, gadgets, fabulous quotations, photographs. If your post is even vaguely foodie, feel free to grab the button and link up anytime over the weekend.

Review copy provided by Andrews McMeel Publishing. I am an Indiebound Affiliate.
32 Comments leave one →
  1. October 30, 2011 6:19 am

    The chicken looks delicious!

  2. October 30, 2011 6:35 am

    I love the quick and easy concept. I actually got Kitchen Express (did you review that? Or Julie?) which is similar. I’d love to have more pictures, but if it is that easy, I guess you don’t need them.

  3. October 30, 2011 8:01 am

    I love the five concept! I may actually have to get this cookbook!

  4. October 30, 2011 9:02 am

    Looks delicious! I enjoyed her first book, will add this one to the list!

  5. October 30, 2011 9:43 am

    I’m glad to hear you say something good about this book. I had my doubts because often the 5-ingredient concept sounds fast and easy but falls short in results. Not that I think every good recipe must include a ton of ingredients, but I often feel as if something were left out to make the 5-item rule. For example, in this recipe, I wonder if I would miss the garlic and onions.

  6. October 30, 2011 10:28 am

    Since my daughter went to college and it is just my husband and I at home I seem to have alot less patience for lengthy meal preps during the week. This sounds like the perfect solution — I am going to check it out to see if there are a good number of vegetarian recipes.

    • October 30, 2011 1:20 pm

      Hi BookGirl,

      There are only myself and my husband at home, so like yourself, spending time preparing lengthy meals hardly seems worth the time and trouble … all that preparation time, all the time spent clearing up afterwards and a few minutes to eat!!!

      Neither of us are vegetarian and couldn’t contemplate life without meat, however we have both been known to eat vegetarian on more than one occasion and we now seem to eat much more fish, although this is generally salmon through preference.

      This five minute book sounds like a great idea to me!

  7. October 30, 2011 12:27 pm

    Now that’s my kind of cookbook. I’m pretty obsessed with calorie info on whatever I eat, and I like to see that this book includes those. Will check this one out.

  8. October 30, 2011 12:42 pm

    This sounds like the perfect book for me, for the nights when my husband isn’t home. I love the plate you’re using, Kathy!

  9. October 30, 2011 12:55 pm

    Great idea for a cookbook. Thanks for posting – the recipe looks delicious

  10. October 30, 2011 1:02 pm

    This cookbook sounds great! I’ll have to check it out. The recipe you tried sounds like a goodie.

  11. October 30, 2011 1:05 pm

    I love fast and easy recipes, so this book sounds like a real winner to me. I am glad that you had great success with the recipe that you tried. It inspires me to want to pick this book up even more! Great review today!

  12. October 30, 2011 1:14 pm

    Hi Kathy,

    I don’t tend to spend much time in the kitchen, I am not into preparing vast, elaborate meals.

    The concept of this book is fantastic, but I shall have to look out for a UK equivalent, as the US measuring system confuses the heck out of me.

    I love the sound of the pork tenderloin with pineapple, although I would probably make it with chicken, as we don’t tend to eat a lot of pork.

    Now you have made me feel very hungry, I am off to prepare some dinner, as it is 5.15pm here in the UK. ….. Tonight, minced beef chilli con carn, with rice.

    I love reading about food!!!

  13. October 30, 2011 3:11 pm

    I want it.

  14. October 30, 2011 3:13 pm

    I’ve not heard about this book, but it sounds really interesting. Five ingredients, well that is something. My guy doesn’t like anykind of sauce, so it makes thing really boring. Perhaps I’ll check this one out.

  15. October 30, 2011 4:11 pm

    I love watching her on television so I am sure that this is a great cookbook.

  16. October 30, 2011 5:43 pm

    this one looks oh so delicious!!!!

  17. October 30, 2011 5:45 pm

    I love this concept and the recipe you tried sounds delicious….I expected garlic or onions to be part of the recipe but I spose you can just add the garlic if you want. I really appreciate being able to make a tasty entree with only 5 ingredients. It always intimidates me when a recipe has a page of ingredients!

  18. October 30, 2011 8:02 pm

    that looks awesome!! 🙂 and you should suggest your picks to your indie- don’t wait for them to ask. i asked & was given my shelf.

  19. October 30, 2011 9:12 pm

    As you already know, I’ve used this one and love it!

  20. October 30, 2011 11:08 pm

    I loved this one too. I made the Philly Pork Chops…Pork Chops with carmalized onions and provolone cheese. They were delish!

  21. October 30, 2011 11:25 pm

    I love the concept of the book-5 ingredients make it easy to use. Is there a section of vegetarian choices in the book?

    • October 31, 2011 7:02 am

      There are some recipes that would qualify as vegetarian, but there is no vegetarian section.

  22. October 30, 2011 11:26 pm

    I definitely need to get this. I am frequently standing in the kitchen , Gage on hip, wondering what I’m going to do for dinner.

  23. October 30, 2011 11:27 pm

    The chicken looks so good! I love that the recipes seem easy and quick…

  24. October 30, 2011 11:30 pm

    My mouth is now watering. That looks so good.

  25. October 31, 2011 1:44 am

    I love all those flavors mixed together in the chicken dish. I’m always looking for a way to add olives in a dish. Very creative.

  26. October 31, 2011 1:37 pm

    This sounds like a perfect meal for when my summer tomatoes come in. Thanks for sharing!

  27. October 31, 2011 2:09 pm

    This sounds like a cookbook I would genuinely use. I love to cook, and I insist on it for the most part. However, I hate having to run out to the store every time I decide to try a recipe. Give me recipes for things I already have all mixed up in a new way. Looks great!!!

  28. October 31, 2011 3:54 pm

    THIS sounds like the perfect cookbook for me! I am always in the kitchen at 5 o’clock trying to figure out what to fix and just staring blankly into the fridge….and ever since I started reading Prevention magazine I’ve really tried to make dinners around 400 – 600 calories….I am going to have to find me a copy of this one!

  29. November 2, 2011 8:45 pm

    This is definitely one cookbook that I need. Anything that requires only 5 ingredients and comes in under 500 calories sounds perfect for me.

  30. November 2, 2011 9:38 pm

    Kathy, this sounds delicious and pretty easy as well. Thanks for sharing.

    We just got our internet back today after Saturday’s storm, so I am thrilled I can visit your blog again.

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