Thursday, August 30, 2012

Help in the kitchen, please! Everyday Cooking - Molly Crew Review




My mother and father divorced the same month I turned twelve. I had a four year old brother and five year old sister. Until that time, my mother stayed home with us and took care of all the cooking, cleaning, and the little ones. 

I'm sure you're asking, what does any of this have to do with cooking?? Well, the new responsibilities of being a single working mother left little time for my mom to teach the homemaking skills I needed. Plus, I was very busy babysitting my siblings and certainly didn't realize the importance of reaching out to my grandmothers at the time. Through the years, I've devoured cookbooks and spent time in the kitchen with my mother and grandmothers, but I still feel a little inept in the kitchen. So, when the Molly Crew opened an opportunity to review a Cooking "How to Manual" I was beyond excited!
So, What is Everyday Cooking?
Everyday Cooking is a collection of simple, nutritious and delicious recipes (with an emphasis on whole foods), meal plans and time saving food preparation tips. The purpose is to help make meal time special, yummy and non-consuming! 

Everyday Cooking began as a chapter in the author's Home Education 101 manual. The chapter was titled, "Getting Dinner to the Table the Same Day You Homeschool". Everyday Cooking, a full cookbook and educational guide, was born from that chapter after moms and dads requested more recipes and more ideas! 

The physical book is 100 pages, coil bound, with a glossy front cover. It's also available in e-book format (the format we received).

Table of Contents: 
  • Preface
  • Introduction
  • Time Saving Tips 
  • Breakfast Ideas
  • Appetizers and Dressings
  • Bread and Grains
  • Main Dishes & Soups & Sides
  • Desserts and Snacks
  • Basic Measurements and Helps
  • Meal Planning and Shopping Hints 
  • Basic Cooking Skills Checklist
  • Sample Menus & Menu Planning Masters
  • Basic Kitchen Accessories
  • Kitchen Equipment
  • The Tortoise and the Hare
  • Suggested Resources
  • Index 
There is a twelve page preview of Everyday Cooking here. Just click the preview button just below the cookbook's picture. The full contents page, which includes all the recipes and the first couple of pages of time-saving/budget friendly tips are included!   

This blue link will take you to two desert recipes featured in the cookbook.
The following will take you to a homemade bread recipe and detailed pictures, both included in Everyday Cooking I'm planning for bread-making to be our next cooking adventure! 

How We Have Used Everyday Cooking:
First, let me begin by telling you that because the author explained pressure cookers, how safe they really are, and how quickly a meal can be prepared I began thinking maybe I should not be terrified of them after all. So, after a few days of thinking about my grandmother and father being pressure cooker pros, and how they have encouraged me to use one many times in the past, I gave them both a call and then decided I should go for it! My husband was on board and we bought one the same day I spoke with my family! It has been the best decision EVER!

I've used this pressure cooker each day since she came into our home. I now consider this a must have kitchen tool!
 This pressure cooker recipe I've made twice and it's a hit with the whole family - and and an eight year old guest!

Chops in Herbs and Wine p. 49 ~ She details how to use the pressure cooker to prepare this meal, the oven and the stove top. The author includes a reminder on safe pork temperature and shares that she uses an instant read digital thermometer. Presentation ideas are also included.

More samplings of recipes the children and I have made:
Homemade Granola, p.27 ~  The author gives variations to the granola recipe ~ we used pecans since that was the only nut we had on hand.

Kristie's Roll Out Cookies p.64 A super fun and delicious treat!

As you can tell, this recipe/cooking 101 book has been a wonderful addition to our family. It has opened a wonderful array of new cooking ideas like pressure cooking! I also love that there is a check off list of kitchen skills. This is a welcomed home economics addition for the children that will last all the way through high school. I am learning, the kids are learning and we are having FUN!

Pricing at the time of posting: 
Everyday Cooking is available as a physical book for 17.99 here. The ebook version is 14.99. You may purchase it here.

About the Author: Vickie Bently
Mrs. Bently is a homeschooling mother to eight children (their youngest is now twenty-two) and was foster parent to more than fifty. She and her husband raised their family on a farm Virginia where she took to heart the charge of the Titus 2 woman. Many of her foster children were in fact, pregnant teenagers. She would help train them in "mommy" skills.

 “Then [the older women] can train the younger women to love their husbands and
children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject
to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.”
Titus 2: 4-6 (NIV)

You may follow Mrs. Bently on facebook at

Read what other Molly Review Crew members thought about Everyday Cooking and another product from Everyday Homemaking, the Everyday Chore System by clicking the link below.


Disclaimer: As a member of TOS Molly Review Crew, I received an e-book copy of Everyday Cooking in exchange for my honest review. All thoughts are my honest opinions.


  1. The more reviews I'm seeing, the more I think how great this would be for my 19 year old. I think I know what's going to be in a certain stocking this year!

    I'm terrified of my pressure cooker. I should really get over that. :)

    1. Eddie,
      Our pressure cooker has been the easiest cooking tool to use! I think you'd find it simplifies your cooking. ~ I can cook frozen garden peas in three minutes once high pressure is reached!

      This would be a great gift for your 19 year old!! =)

      Thanks for taking the time to comment!!

  2. I've always been afraid of the pressure cooker as well. I remember my parents had one, but... Hmmm. May have to think about getting one! What other recipes have you done in it? I'm a big crockpot person - love dinner done in the morning and ready when we are that night. Fun review - thanks!

    1. April,
      My problem with our crock pot has been getting (easily) distracted in the morning and forgetting to put dinner together!
      For the pressure cooker, I've substituted chicken instead of pork in the Herbs and Wine recipe - seven minutes cook time! I've also cooked frozen garden peas - 3 minute cook time, and top round strips with potatoes - in about 5 minutes. I quarter the potatoes, as suggested in the cookbook. Chuck roasts take less than an hour and there is a recipe I haven't tried YET for Brunswick Stew. Now, our pressure cooker came with a recipe book and it lists all kinds of meals like potato soup in less than 5 minutes! Both cookbooks say that your favorite recipes can be adapted easily for pressure cooking. I'm still playing around with ours!

      Thanks for taking the time to comment! =)

    2. Wow! That's neat! I love the idea of it cooking that fast. You've inspired me to check it out!


    3. Great! Let me know if you do and what you think! =)

  3. I have a pressure cooker fear. :( I just skipped over those recipes because of that.

    1. I did, too! I almost skipped them as well! =) It started from my mother's fear of pressure cookers...

      Thanks for taking the time to comment, Jennifer!

  4. I don't even own a pressure cooker so fear or no fear I couldn't do them :) Though I admit I'm thinking I might want to get one. Especially if I can get one that will also allow me to do some small batches of canning.

    1. There are many different sized pressure cookers on the market. I'm sure you could find one to fit your needs, if you decide to take the plunge! I really am glad I did. They are so simple to use!

      Thanks for taking the time to stop by and comment, Tess!

  5. The new pressure cookers have lots of safety features built in. I love my cookers -- you'll see them in the cookbook and on my site. But you don't have to have them to fix the recipes -- I just add PC instructions to several. The cookers are great for rice, too -- brown rice takes about 20 minutes. So I can make rice for several meals in 20 minutes, while something else is cooking elsewhere. Thanks for the lovely review, and I hope you have a fabulous time with the bread recipe!

    1. Thank you! I will certainly have to try brown rice, too! I must admit you've opened a whole new world of cooking to our family. That's a very good thing, too! =) Thanks so much for stopping by and taking a moment to comment.

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