How To Cook Everything iPhone app will make you a chef

Oct 6, 2010
Shine

I was always wary when it came to e-cookbooks. I had no tangible reason for my avoidance; it just seemed to me that cooking should be done with the big cookbook open on the counter like the family bible for food. How to Cook Everything by Culinate ($4.99) for iOS devices completely changed my mind. […]

I was always wary when it came to e-cookbooks. I had no tangible reason for my avoidance; it just seemed to me that cooking should be done with the big cookbook open on the counter like the family bible for food. How to Cook Everything by Culinate ($4.99) for iOS devices completely changed my mind. If you cook a lot, I would recommend this app. If you don’t cook very often, I would recommend this app. If you are like me and you don’t cook at all but you wish you did, I would recommend this app.

How to Cook Everything is based on Mark Bittman’s bestselling book, “How to Cook Everything.”  The app layout is very simple to understand and maintains continuity with your basic iOS apps. You have a navigation bar on the bottom with five buttons: “Home,” “Search,” “Favorites,” “Shop,” and “More.” The app begins at the “Home” page. Here, you have the title of the app, two large buttons below that, and four smaller buttons below those. Just above the navigation bar on the bottom of the page, there is a search field for quick reference. This page is kind of like the “featured” page of the app and ties everything together nicely.

Let’s go over the other pages really quick, then go back to the “Home” page. Your “Search” page is very comprehensive. You can search by key ingredient, technique, or flavor — and you are even able to narrow your search to recipes that are fast for those nights where time is short. The “Favorites” page is where your favorite apps are kept for quick reference. The “Shop” page is where you can prepare a list of things that you need at the grocery store from the ingredients in the recipes that you are preparing.

Each of the recipes are put into one or more of these four categories: “Fast,” “Make Ahead,” “Vegetarian,” and “Essential.” They are marked with “F,” “M,” “V,” and “E,” respectively. While searching, you can narrow the search by selecting recipes that meet the criteria of one or more of these labels. This makes it simple to find what you are looking for, and even helps you to choose what cook! For someone like me who doesn’t cook often, I love this functionality.

Back on the “Home” page, your big buttons will take you to “Browse Recipes” or “Kitchen Basics.” As I noted earlier, the app is very beginner friendly while still being a great resource for more experienced cooks. Below that, you have Bittman’s “favorites” list, the most popular recipes, featured recipes, and an “easy button” for quick dinner recipes Once into a recipe, it is extremely easy to follow and understand. My favorite part of this app has to be the timers that are built into the recipes– you are even able to have multiple timers going at once.

I thought they did a really nice job bundling Bittman’s book into a great looking and functional iOS app. If you are willing or looking to try the e-cookbook experience, this is the way to do it.

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