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‘Betty Crocker Cookbook’ gets a makeover


For someone who exists only in our collective imagination, Betty Crocker has made quite a mark on American home cooking.
Her eponymous “Big Red” cookbook, first published in 1950 and revised 12 times in the years since to reflect changes in taste, demographics and cooking methods, has taught and inspired generations of home cooks. Each new edition has captured the next big shift in eating, both in available ingredients and what cooks are using to prepare them.

The 13th edition that hit bookshelves on Oct. 25, for instance, features more than 375 exclusive and on-trend recipes geared to busy families looking for shortcuts and healthier options, along with more global flavors.
This latest edition, which took four years to produce, has busy families in mind. Dozens of easy, five-ingredient recipes are sprinkled among its 704 pages, each accompanied with a picture of the ingredients along with the final dish. Even though no one initially knew that the coming pandemic would make food so expensive, it also includes a host of budget-friendly, “use it up” recipes aimed at leftover ingredients lurking in your fridge or pantry.

Air fryers are more popular than ever with cooks looking to cut fat from their diets. This beer-battered fish taco recipe is both calorie smart and super fast — the fish only needs to cook for about 7 minutes in the fryer. A sweet and tangy citrus slaw adds a bright, refreshing crunch.

Air Fryer Beer-Battered Fish Tacos


For slaw

1 orange

1 cup thinly sliced green cabbage

1/3 cup thinly sliced red onion

3 tablespoons finely chopped seeded jalapeno

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

For avocado cream

1/2 cup guacamole

3 tablespoons sour cream

For fish

1/4 cup beer

1 egg white

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon mesquite seasoning

1/2 teaspoon each chili powder and ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 pound cod or other medium-firm white fish, skin removed, cut into planks

4 flour tortillas, warmed


Grate orange to get 2 teaspoons zest; place in medium bowl. Using paring knife, cut orange into sections. Remove remaining peel and white membrane. Chop orange and place in bowl with any juice. Add remaining slaw ingredients and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate until ready to assemble tacos.

In small bowl, mix guacamole with sour cream. Cover and refrigerate until ready to assemble tacos.

In small bowl, whisk together beer and egg white. In shallow bowl, mix flour, mesquite seasoning, chili powder, cumin and salt.

Dip each piece of fish in flour mixture to coat both sides, then dip into beer mixture, allowing excess to drip off. Coat again with flour mixture and place on cookie sheet.

Spray air fryer screen with cooking spray. Place coated fish pieces on screen, then spray with cooking spray to moisten flour coating. Set fryer to 375 degrees and cook for 5 minutes. Turn fish over, and cook an additional 1-2 minutes or until fish flakes easily with fork.

Spread each tortilla with about 3 tablespoons avocado cream. Place 1 fish plank on top, then top with about 1/2 cup slaw. Fold tortillas over filling and serve immediately.

Serves 2.

— “Betty Crocker Cookbook: Everything You Need to Know to Cook Today” (Harvest; Oct. 25, 2022; $32.50)

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette/Tribune News Service




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