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Cooking Quick & Easy

A Generous Meal

Modern Recipes for Dinner

by (author) Christine Flynn

Penguin Group Canada
Initial publish date
Feb 2023
Quick & Easy, Entertaining, Comfort Food
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Feb 2023
    List Price

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Dinner can be equal parts impressive and simple any day of the week. Sometimes all you need is a little inspiration and a cabbage—and this book!

In A Generous Meal, Christine Flynn shows us—contrary to popular belief—that you don’t need a lot of time, money, or know-how to make good food. A simple potato can transform a so-so day into something special, a soup can warm you in more ways than one, and baking a chocolate cake is just another way of shouting, “I love you!” at the top of your lungs.

A Generous Meal is a modern cookbook of over 100 recipes that anyone—from a novice to an experienced chef like Christine—can use to whip up restaurant-quality meals with ease.

Maybe you are having people over and want to put out some crusty bread and serve an array of simple starters like Butter Beans in Salsa Verde or Warm Chorizo in Sidra that will get everyone nibbling. Or, perhaps you’re looking for a vegetable forward weeknight meal like Spicy Oven Charred Cabbage and Lemons. Seafood dishes, including Herb Stuffed Rainbow Trout or Cod and Zucchini in Curry Coconut Broth, offer good variety, and meaty mains like Crispy Chicken Thighs over Vinegar Beans or Lamb Loin Chops over Minty Pistachio Butter are perfect any day of the week—and just as impressive to serve to guests.

And what is a meal without the possibility of dessert? Satisfy your post-dinner sweet tooth cravings with recipes like Caramel Pecan Ice Cream Crumble Cake or Polenta Biscuits with Sweet Corn Cream and Strawberries.

The recipes in A Generous Meal are fresh, comforting, easy to follow, and the best part? They are enjoyable to cook and eat.

About the author

Contributor Notes

CHRISTINE FLYNN is proprietor of The Good Earth Winery and Bistro where she hosts cooking classes, throws wonderful dinner parties, and teaches people how to live and eat well. A veteran of the hospitality industry, she graduated at the top of her class from the French Culinary Institute in Manhattan, and has worked in kitchens everywhere from Burgundy to Nantucket. She has a passion for simple recipes, affordable ingredients, loaded pantries, and cooking for pleasure. Christine lives in Niagara, Ontario with her family.

Excerpt: A Generous Meal: Modern Recipes for Dinner (by (author) Christine Flynn)


There comes a time when you must make and then immediately eat food that is solid and good and reaffirms that you are, in fact, still here. I say “a time,” but actually this will happen many times over your life. I am sorry, but it’s true. This may be after a breakup, when you find yourself in the eighth month of a pandemic, or simply at the end of a bad head cold. It could even be a horrific combination of all three. At that point, I will say to you what I have said to myself: “Cook a potato.”

You cannot scrub a potato without having both feet firmly planted on the ground. Your hands must grip its rugged, knobby skin, and the smell of the earth will fill your nose. These are all very good things. It’s a meditation of sorts, but a meditation where you end up with a hot meal at the end. I will not tell you how to cook your potato, because that is a personal choice, but I will tell you how I cook my potato when I am in need of one.

I like to get a nice big russet and prick it many times with a fork before setting the oven at about 450°F (230°C). I rub the potato all over with olive oil, sprinkle it generously with kosher salt, and then set it on a wire rack over a sheet tray and bake it for about 20 minutes until its skin has wrinkled and it has softened slightly. Then I pull it out of the oven and rub it all over again, but this time with unsalted butter. I turn the oven up to 475°F (240°C) and return the potato to the wire rack for another 20 minutes until it’s crispy and, when squeezed gently with an oven-mitted hand, it yields.

After the potato cools slightly, I find a small, sharp knife and cut a line from one end of the potato to the other. There is something soothing about the precision of this ritual. There is also a sense of excitement because I am opening a package. The package, if cooked correctly, is full of warm, fluffy potato insides that I fluff even more with a fork, so that the steam billows out with all of the good smells. A potato needs very little at this point but depending on my mood I will add more butter and some crystals of flakey salt. If I truly need reminding that I will get through whatever is making me feel that I simply can’t, I will add crème fraîche and a tin of cod.

It is a small, beautiful thing to give yourself a potato, and to allow whatever is taking up real estate in your brain to drift away on a cloud of warm, earthy steam. A potato will remind you that you are capable not just of cooking something perfectly, but of being resilient too. It is a celebration of your own steadfastness, your ability to take a knock and come back a little wiser, a little more tenacious than before. Sometimes life is hard in ways you don’t always see coming. But think of all the potatoes out there, just waiting to be a comfort.

Editorial Reviews

“Flynn may be Canada’s best-kept secret, with her laidback attitude, entertaining chops, and deceptively simple dishes. She will be a popular fresh new voice for cookbook shelves.” Library Journal

“Christine Flynn understands the importance of food to nurture and uses it to bring people together and express her love for friends and family. The recipes in this big-hearted cookbook are a celebration of all that is special about the dinner table.” —Bonnie Stern, multi-award-winning and bestselling author

“A Generous Meal celebrates the potential of an everyday dinner. Of course, it's a chance to eat something delicious, but Christine makes clear that it's also an opportunity to care for yourself and the people you love. Her expert tips and fresh, simple recipes will help you put together elegant, flavorful, and satisfying meals with ease.” —Jeanine Donofrio, bestselling author of Love & Lemons

“Christine Flynn has written a stunning ode to contemporary food. This book is an atlas to culinary journeys and there is no wiser soul I would want as my guide.” —Hugh Acheson, author of How to Cook: Building Blocks and 100 Simple Recipes for a Lifetime of Meals

“Christine Flynn's second book, A Generous Meal, just reaffirms what I already knew: she cooks all of the food I crave, and makes it look effortless. Make every recipe in here!” —Jeremy Fox, award-winning chef and author of On Vegetables: Modern Recipes for the Home Kitchen

“Prepare to fall in love with A Generous Meal. This stunning cookbook is full of effortless, comforting, and vibrant dinner recipes fit for any day of the week. A vegetable lover’s dream!” —Diala Canelo, author of Diala's Kitchen: Plant-Forward and Pescatarian Recipes Inspired by Home and Travel

“Every once in a while, you come across a unique, beautiful cookbook that speaks to your soul. This is one of those special books. A Generous Meal is a wonder to behold—it boasts a collection of fun, easy-to-make recipes that produce irresistible and picturesque meals for the chef in all of us. This book is sure to be a staple in every household!” —Shahir Massoud, author of Eat, Habibi, Eat!: Fresh Recipes for Modern Egyptian Cooking

A Generous Meal is one of the clearest representations of our generation’s palate—a palate that wants nothing more than a big hug in the form of a warm dish after a long day. Christine’s uncanny ability to know what we’re craving and help us get it on the table with ease is testament to her talent as a cook and her sensitivity to the needs of other multi-tasking people like her. From here on out, I will unabashedly take her advice, especially when it comes to treating myself to a freshly baked chocolate cake in the name of self-care and love. As she says in the introduction, writers are told to write what they know. I am so glad that Christine wrote about what she knows: flavor—and lots of it—in just the right dish at just the moment you need it. Felicidades, Christine! I wish I had counted the number of times I gasped with excitement while reading the recipes in A Generous Meal.” —Award-winning chef, Claudette Zepeda

“Christine takes the word 'resourceful' to new heights. This book is a collection of recipes that take your run-of-the-mill pantry items and turn them into magic: stunning, creative, delicious magic. Her recipes are aspirations, but not intimidating. She has made gorgeous food accessible to everyone.” —Michelle Rabin, food stylist and recipe developer

Other titles by Christine Flynn