Meet Ann Martin Rolke, author of Hands-Off Cooking

Meet Ann Martin Rolke, author of Hands-Off Cooking 1I am pleased to welcome Ann Martin Rolke, author of "Hands-Off Cooking: Low-Supervision, High-Flavor Meals for Busy People", to Metropolitan Mama today. 

Ann Martin Rolke is a culinary consultant and a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America and Duke University. She has a 5 1/2 month old daughter. Ann blogs at Sacatomato

ME: What is your schedule like right now? 

ANN: I have a babysitter two mornings a week so I can do some editing, blogging, and playing Scrabulous (it's good for my brain!). My husband is off on Mondays, so he takes her for a few hours on those days so I can do some work. But mostly I'm having fun being a mom.

ME: Do you cook dinner for your family every single night? 

ANN: I cook most nights, but not all. My husband cooks one or two nights a week. We usually try to have some staples, like pizza dough and cheese on hand for a quick meal. We also try to plan a few nights of meals before we go shopping, and then know we have those ingredients ready to go.

ME: What are YOUR top three favorite cookbooks?

ANN: The ones I seem to use over and over again lately (besides my own) are Passionate Vegetarian by Crescent Dragonwagon, 5 Spices 50 Dishes by Ruta Kahate, and Mexico One Plate at a Time by Rick Bayless. They offer a variety of flavors for the spice and condiment addicted cook that I am.

ME: What is the one recipe that you come back to over-and-over again?

ANN: I really do cook from my book a lot, especially now with a baby. I make the Lentil Soup with Greens and Sausage pretty frequently. We like to eat leafy greens and almost always have lentils and sausage on hand. I also make the Nutty Pumpkin Lasagna a lot--year round. 

ME: What tips do you have to help parents make evenings more peaceful around mealtime?

ANN: We always try to feed the baby before we eat so we don't have to interrupt our meals as much. We also all sit down at the table together (Eva in her high chair) if possible, so she understands that we take time to enjoy dinner together. Of course, as she gets older, I'm sure this may not be so easy!

Thanks, Ann. Best wishes to you on your next endeavor. 

Meet Ann Martin Rolke, author of Hands-Off Cooking 2WIN IT! One winner will receive "Hands-Off Cooking: Low-Supervision, High-Flavor Meals for Busy People" by Ann Martin Rolke. To enter, simply leave a comment on this post prior to Saturday, May 3 at midnight (don’t forget to follow the rules). The winner will be announced and contacted on Sunday, May 4. * Winner must provide a U.S. mailing address.

*UPDATE* The winner is #103 Audrey. Congratulations!

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195 comments on “Meet Ann Martin Rolke, author of Hands-Off Cooking”

  1. I really need a new cookbook. I am running out of ideas and my old recipies are getting boring.
    Hands off cooking sounds like a solution that would suit my lifestyle perfectly. Thanks for the giveaway.

  2. * * * * Cooking inspiration * * * *

    Author Ann Martin Rolke is a culinary consultant and a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America and Duke University.

    * * * * Cooking inspiration * * * *

  3. Wow...would love this. My husband and I both work full-time and have two kids that are hungry when we get home and can't want two-hours for a good meal on weeknights.

  4. I am not a great cook, and usually end up cooking the same old tried and true things that I know will be tasty. This book sounds terrific for me! Imagine -- sitting back and letting a delicious dinner take care of itself! Thanks for the chance to win!

  5. * * * * Cooking inspiration * * * *

    Author Ann Martin Rolke is a culinary consultant and a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America and Duke University.

    * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

  6. Please excuse my ignorance, but what is Lentil soup??? The only thing that comes to mine is the Streissand movie with the caracter of Yental. Many thanks to all who enter. Best of luck to all

  7. I'm always on the lookout for new recipes. This sounds like a great cookbook- I would use it all the time.

  8. The cute babies on this page are making me jealous! I have four, but my baby isn't as baby-ish as those cuties. Anyway, I want the book for my husband. His hobby is cooking and his books got ruined in a flood. :(

  9. Low maintenance cooking...where have you been all my life? Count me in to win this wonderful tool for the busy woman.

  10. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
    Author Ann Martin Rolke is a culinary consultant and a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America and Duke University.

    * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

  11. I'm all hands-off, except for the stinky salad I made that takes about 30 minutes to make. This'll be interesting...

  12. What a great idea for a cookbook! My husband is dying for me to cook meals for him but I am too pooped at the end of the day so we just end up eating random foods for dinner. You might guess that my mother-in-law is not too happy about this.
    I'm not feeding her BABY BOY!! :)

    I thank you for the opportunity to win --- and my mother-in-law does too!!!

  13. This cookbook sounds good. I also have a young one, almost 5 months. I recently bought a slow cooker and with the right recipes sometimes I even use it twice a day (dinner, late night snack) - I love to make rice pudding in there and oatmeal pudding and even made banana walnut bread (thanks to Judith Finlayson's slow cooker books). Sometimes I do my own potatos in there, and soon I'll be doing my baby's sweet potatos to put in the food processer - cooking them in the slow cooker with a little water, and using the same water to blend them up - seems the best way to keep all the nutrients.

  14. This is wonderful. I hate spending time cooking when I know there's so much else that needs doing but I do appreciate a great meal. I think the basic premise of this cookbook is a winner.

  15. Ooh - this sounds great. I burn a lot of stuff because I'm trying to do too many things at once

  16. This book sounds perfect for me. I am so tired of making the same things, and coming up with new ideas for easy nutritious meals is always a challenge.

  17. Lentil Soup with Greens and Sausage has my mouth watering. And, trying to do it all with 2 small children means I need this cooking advice!

  18. Great with this book I can still fix something tasty and not leave poor Brea in the playpen forever.She will be very excited if we get this. Thanks

  19. We need a new infusion of quick, healthy recipes. Between crazy work schedules and the kids' sports, it's become hard to sit down to a proper meal.

  20. I love cookbooks, I like to try new things, but I don't always have the time. I am going to try Ann's recipe for Tandoorish Chicken, that sounds good.

  21. I could really use this cookbook. My husband and I both work full time and we have two small boys. It certainly qualifies as a busy life. I try to cook healthy meals everyday, but sometimes have to resort to the boxed macaroni and cheese (I do add some ground beef and broccoli at least!) Thanks for the great giveaway.


  22. I am always looking for better ways to take care of my family. This would be a good addition to my collection. And I agree about Rick Bayless.

  23. Low supervision AND high flavor? The only thing that could be better would be for someone else to do the shopping and assemble it for me! In truth, this cookbook sounds like it could add some new items to our menu. Thanks for the chance to win.

  24. Sounds great for my busy life...I can use a few tips and ideas! I don't like spending too much time in the kitchen, and I know my husband will appreciate that as well.

  25. I have a wonderful husband who actually cooks since I'm NOT THAT GOOD at it! : ( We are so busy that I think he'd appreciate some help in this area so I'm expressing my genuine interest for him! Ha! As for me, if I were to actually get this book I may be required to DO something with it like prepare a meal and that would be no bueno! I HEART your blog! : )

  26. This book would be great. I love being able to put dinner in to cook and not have to worry about it until it is done.

  27. I enjoy cookbooks like these, and would love to try it. As our children grow, I see the dinner hours as becoming busier and busier. Having the togetherness mealtime provides is important to us -- and absuloutely requires planning and committment. This sounds like a book to keep moving in that direction -- and the recipes she discussed sounded great!

  28. My husband would be so THRILLED if I won this book! I have tried and tried to cook, and I just am not any good at it. Most nights I cook, we just have soup (from a can) and muffins....bless his heart, he is so tired of them!

  29. I'm a cookbook collector, and this one looks practical/beautiful/purposeful. I had a routine DOWN when cooking for the 2 of us . . . now that there's 3 of us, thinks have gone topsy turvey and I feel like I'm learning to create meals all over again.

    I'd love to learn recipes that are great for the entire family (not just when my husband and I love to die for spicy and international cooking--because that's not always so great for baby).

    Do I need more time? Who DOESN'T. Life will become even more demanding when I soon juggle practicing and seeing patients while also being mom and the primary cook.

    Hope I win...I'd love to have the chance to use this book to its fullest potential.

  30. I love to cook, but ever since my little one came along, it's more stressful than relaxing for me. I would love a cookbook like this...

  31. With 3 kids there's not always a lot of time! The lentil soup and the lasagna sound great. I would love to win this for both my husband and myself as we love cooking! Thanks for the great giveaway!

  32. I hope you pick me. My family will thank you! They often complain that I cook the same things over and over again but you know how it is there are only so many hours in a day. If only i could have two of me lol!

  33. Sounds like a great idea. I watch my nieces two day a week and with four kids running around I am always looking for something in the crockpot to make, or a quick hot dish I can throw together and then put in the over at dinner time. I could definately use more ideas though!

  34. I'd like to try out your recipe for Chicken Mole. I am always looking for a better way to make this!

  35. The Kahlua cake on p. 161 sounds like a winner! I'd love to win this cookbook for the easy recipes!

  36. As a busy student, a cookbook like this would be perfect for me so I can focus more on my studies. What a great giveaway!!

  37. I could really use this! I am busy busy working 12 hour shifts. I feel like quick recipes often lack substance and tastes. Sounds great!


  38. i love to cook. unfortunately i have a 1 hour commute each way every day. This cookbook sure would come in handy

  39. I am a cookbook-a-holic, is there a group for that? I've been trying to prepare healthier meals for my family (and myself). This cookbook (and the author) sound like it has some easy healthy recipes included. I would love to take a look.

  40. How great to get a cookbook from a mama herself! a lot of my recipes come from but sometimes is more effort than its worth...I can never do just the original recipe! Plus, I'm always inspired by pretty pictures in cook books...and the pictures never print out nice!

    Okay, and how awesome is it that she gets a sitter twice a week! I know its not all fun and games, but it sounds great for both baby and mama. I just might have to look into setting something up like that! :)

  41. I'm always look for good and easy recipes to make. I get so tired of eating the same old stuff. This cookbook would be great to use.

  42. Hello! What could be better than a cookbook that gives you low supervision and high-flavor meals?! Our family sits down together for the dinner meal almost every night. Sometimes things like baseball practice, games and such get in the way, but mostly we are togother. Please enter me in your drawing. I really appreciate it.....Cindi

  43. This cookbook sounds fantastic. With always being busy, this would be great.
    Thanks for this giveaway.

  44. I like the idea that she promotes sitting down together as a family for dinner. It's so hard to fit this into our busy lives, but it is soooo important. Her recipes will help us make the time!

  45. This book looks really interesting. All the recipes on the index sound so good, with a varied mix of dishes both meat eaters and vegetarians, like my mother and I. It'll be a pleasure to try some of them out, if I happen to win the book.

  46. Nutty Pumpkin Lasagna sounds yummy but since it does not have any meat I don't think my family would eat it, maybe if I add some meat they would like it

  47. Her recipes sound so interesting! I can't even imagine what Nutty Pumpkin Lasagna tastes like...guess I'll have to win the book to find out ;) j/k!

  48. The Pan-Seared Salmon with Lemonade Sauce that Ann mentions on her blog sounds fabulous. My husband and I love cooking together and are always looking for new recipes to try. I'd love to win this book!

  49. This book would be perfect for me! I attempt these kinds of meals, for the most part, already. It's hard to find many options in my current repertoire, though, and I end up making the same 7-8 dishes all the time! I hate having to stand in the kitchen for an hour cooking the meal...I would much rather spend time crawling on the floor with my son!

    "5 Spices 50 Dishes" I have now read about a few times, and I think I am going to add that one to my Amazon wish list! (As well as hands-off cooking, now!)

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