‘Barefoot Contessa’ Ina Garten Explains What It Takes for a Recipe To Get Into Her Cookbooks

Food Network star Ina Garten is rigorous about her recipes and about the ones she allows to be part of any of her cookbooks. From trying a recipe out on her own, over and over, to then handing it off to someone else to ensure the instructions are crystal clear, the woman known as the Barefoot Contessa has a method to her cookbook creation.

Here are Ina Garten’s requirements for a recipe to be Barefoot Contessa-cookbook-worthy.

Ina Garten
Ina Garten | Brad Barket/Getty Images for The New Yorker

Ina Garten’s ‘Modern Comfort Food’ is coming soon

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The Hamptons resident’s twelfth cookbook, Modern Comfort Food is due to be published in October of 2020, just in time for holiday planning, parties, and gifting. This new cookbook is ideal for fans who can’t wait to try out her new recipe collection.

Her publisher, Penguin Random House announced that Garten’s new collection “shares 85 new recipes that will feed your deepest cravings. Many of these dishes are inspired by childhood favorites–but with the volume turned way up, such as Cheddar and Chutney Grilled Cheese sandwiches (the perfect match for Ina’s Creamy Tomato Bisque), Smashed Hamburgers with Caramelized Onions, and the crispiest hash browns that are actually made in a waffle iron!”

Her fans are eager to get their hands on the newest cookbook from Garten, who’s known for her impeccable instructions and reasonable ingredients lists.

How a recipe gets into a ‘Barefoot Contessa’ cookbook

Speaking to The Kitchn in 2018, Garten described her thinking process as she decides on the right recipes to include in her cookbooks.

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“There are a few things I’m always looking for,” she explained. “The first is, can you go to the grocery store and buy the ingredients? Even if it’s an easy recipe to cook, if it takes you too long to shop for, you won’t want to make it. (Like, do you have to go to India to buy a certain spice?)”

“The second is, does it take less time than you would expect to prep and cook the thing? Then finally when it’s done, is it more than just good? I want it to be like wow, this is delicious.”

What Garten does when she can’t think of working on another recipe

Does Ina Garten ever hit a creative wall, throw her hands up in the air, and call it a day? According to her, “That won’t happen!,” she told the outlet. “I’ve always had a list of recipes that I’m working on, like 50 recipes that I have ideas for.”

“So what I’ll do each day is go through the list and say, Oh, I really feel like making soup today, and I’ll work on the soup, or if it’s the summer, I feel like making a salad, so I’ll make a roasted vegetable salad. So there’s always something!”

The Barefoot Contessa is never bored and, apparently, never out of ideas.

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