I recently received a free trial issue of a magazine called Cuisine At Home. It is advertisement-free, so maybe it’s trying to appeal to the types of folks who’d subscribe to Cooks Illustrated? It has several features that would be familiar to Cooks subscribers: tips from readers, equipment and ingredient reviews, techniques explained, a reference to their “test kitchen”.

Before going on vacation, I tried one of the more complicated recipes I could find in the issue: Pecan crusted chicken cutlets. I don’t often do breaded chicken; white bread, even in the form of crumbs, isn’t a frequent part of my diet. But this combined crumbs with some spices and finely chopped pecans, which sounded good. The cutlets started on the stovetop and finished in the oven, and were served over a honey-mustard-dressed mixed salad. We liked it.

My reactions to the magazine overall are behind the jump.

My initial reaction was, meh. The recipes seemed mostly pretty basic and the tips were not that ingenious. And maybe it was just a quirk of this issue, but the entree recipes were really chicken-centric. If memory serves, there must have been half a dozen or more variations on chicken, and just one recipe using fish and one using beef. It just seemed strange. One thing I did appreciate was that most of the recipes recommended a suitable side dish, so it was more meal-planning-oriented than Cooks tends to be. And they use photographs where Cooks relies on sketches – that’s nice, I guess, but not a huge attractor for me. 

The pecan-crusted chicken was fine, and the instructions worked perfectly. Hopefully for the magazine’s sake, that indicates that the recipes are well-tested in general. I’m not sure if I’ll make anything else from this magazine, but we liked this dish enough to want to make it again eventually.

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