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The Burn Cookbook
An Unofficial Unauthorized Cookbook for Mean Girls Fans
By Nikki Martin
Foreword by Lacey Chabert
Formats and Prices
- Hardcover $25.00 $32.50 CAD
- ebook $14.99 $19.99 CAD
This item is a preorder. Your payment method will be charged immediately, and the product is expected to ship on or around October 2, 2018. This date is subject to change due to shipping delays beyond our control.
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The Burn Cookbook is a hilarious, delicious must-have cookbook for chefs (and wannabes) everywhere! Jonathan Bennett (that's right, Aaron Samuels himself) dishes out a tasty parody of Mean Girls, serving up behind-the-scenes stories from the movie alongside awesome recipes for treats that your favorite mean girls should be enjoying in Girl World. Like math, the language of food is the same in every country, and this cookbook is packed with amazing creations like Fetch-uccine Alfredo, You Go, Glenn (Hot) Cocoa, and Just Stab Caesar Salad.
Written with the help of rock star chef Nikki Martin, Jonathan also shares his favorite recipes from his own childhood, like his mom's famous stuffed shells, mandarin chicken salad, and other specialties that will round out any special event. Perfect for happy hour (don't forget it's from 4:00 to 6:00 PM), Wednesdays, or when sweatpants are the only thing that fits, The Burn Cookbook is a must-own book for any food lover still trying making fetch happen.
HEY! IT’S ME JONATHAN BENNETT, you met me as that man candy from Mean Girls, aka Aaron Samuels. You know, the one who only cares about school, his mom, and his friends. I know that before we go any further, I should probably answer some of your questions and just get them out of the way. So here we go:
As I write this, it has been almost fifteen years since the release of Mean Girls, the hilarious, provocative, instantly iconic high school send up. A lot has changed since 2004, but this movie is as relevant as ever: the characters just as memorable, the jokes just as funny, and the satire of girl world as accurate as ever. No matter where you would have sat in the lunchroom, there’s something in that movie for everybody.
Now you may be wondering, why after all these years have I decided to write about my time as Aaron Samuels? And why do it through a cookbook, when the girls of North Shore couldn’t find their way around the kitchen if the Spring Fling crown depended on it? I wanted to poke a little fun at the world of North Shore and pull some juicy, behind-the-scenes secrets out of Gretchen’s hair to share them with you.
The girls in the movie are obsessed with image, and nowhere is that more apparent than in their relationship with food and dieting. In today’s world of social media, it feels like everybody’s trying to show off their awesome meals, with their awesome friends on their awesome vacations to places more awesome than wherever everyone else is. Everybody’s playing a role, whether it’s pretending that it didn’t take twenty tries to get the perfect snap or that dinner didn’t go cold while they looked for the best filter. I think one of the reasons Mean Girls has the staying power that it does (aside from the incredible script and outstanding acting, natch) is that it serves as a reminder that we’re all better when we take ourselves a little less seriously and embrace what makes us each unique. And since I love food, what better way to inspire others than through a delicious set of recipes that also pay tribute to my favorite movie of all time?
One of the reasons that food is so important to me is because of how it connects me to my mother. Throughout my entire acting career, whether I was on stage in a community theater production or on screen for the ABC soap All My Children, my mother found a way to share her homemade cooking with the cast and crew. A long tech rehearsal wasn’t the same until Ruthanne showed up with enough of her famous Chicken Stuffed Shells, and no cast party (always at our house) was had without her Mandarin Orange Salad (see our version here). Her food brought people together, no matter how late rehearsal was going, or how much drama had taken place behind the scenes. Food was her way of showing me that she was my biggest fan and would support me through everything, and that’s why I believe that there’s no better way to bring people together than through a delicious, comforting meal.
In 2004, I got to take my mom to the premiere of Mean Girls in Hollywood. She stood in awe next to me on the red carpet with her signature smile plastered on her face. Granted, I’m pretty sure deep down this was the proudest of me she had ever been in her life, but her reaction was the same one she’d flash whenever I did anything she could boast to friends and family about.
My mother passed away in 2012, and when I was cleaning out her kitchen and I came across the many recipes that she had created over the years. Everything was handwritten on envelopes and scrap paper—many had missing pieces and were impossible to decipher. I wanted to make sure as many of her recipes as possible lived on forever and weren’t lost over time.
That’s where my Food Network pal, Nikki Martin, who must have had ESPN or something, stepped in! She was able to resurrect my mom’s recipes and use her magic touch to turn them into masterpieces.
Jam-packed with recipes, this book speaks to more than just your stomach. The recipes are delicious and the drinks are fetch and serve way beyond four to six.
We also have exciting new games and quizzes that will turn your regular, basic brunches into so much fun that even Principal Duvall will think you’ve gone wild. You girls have gone wild!
The Burn Cookbook has been created so you can bring your friends together to share and relive the moments of everyone’s favorite movie, Mean Girls. This is a way to embark on a new adventure and see if you have what it takes to sit with us.
So rather than obsess over your man shoulders, huge calves, or bad breath, I want you to celebrate with these delicious recipes that will make you laugh about your favorite scenes in a new way. Because real talk: food really does have the potential to help us all get along like we did in middle school. So, grab your friends, put your hair up (but remember you can only wear a ponytail once a week), and start cooking! Don’t worry, even if it’s a complete disaster, you can always just get cheese fries.
LOVE YA, BEYOTCHES!
Now go shave your back.
Own Your Kitchen
JAMBO, WOULD-BE CHEFS! Welcome to your kitchen! Ya know, that room in the house where you keep your wine, beer, box of Tums, and last night’s pizza? Well, guess what? It’s about to become your new BFF. We are going to be doing wild and crazy things up in here… like BAKING, SAUTÉING, SIMMERING, ROASTING, MIXING, BLANCHING, BOILING, and even GRILLING!
WARNING: It will get hot and you will get dirty, but it will all be worth it. You’ll impress new friends, maybe even score a BF or GF, and—most importantly—save some cash by eating and getting drunk at home, all with the new skills you’re about to learn.
I like to think of the kitchen and its contents as similar to a good old-fashioned Caboodle. (Remember Caboodles? Those super-cute, everyone-had-to-have plastic makeup cases? The ones where you kept all your important beauty sh*t along with other top secret stuff? Google it.) Well, just like with the Caboodle, if the kitchen isn’t well stocked with the right tools and essentials the end result isn’t gonna be pretty. And all of us mean girls just want it to be pretty, right? So here’s a basic list for the basic chef’s Kitchen Caboodle:
APRON: Your food is only as good as you look. If I’m looking and feeling super- awesome, my PMA (positive mental attitude) is through the roof and just permeates everything I make and do. So don’t be a fugly, grumpy chef. Be a hot and sassy one, full of confidence, rainbows, and smiles. (If you can’t do this naturally, start drinking wine before you preheat your oven and that should help with your PMA.) I always have a few aprons at the ready so I can look and feel like I know what I’m doing and avoid getting marinara sauce all over my new skinny jeans.
SALT: It’s fundamental. It’s even elemental. (But you probably skipped Chem 101, didn’t you?) There are many types you can use while cooking, I like to have my kitchen stocked with traditional sea salt or fleur de sel, and pink Himalayan salt. The sea salt has a lovely and gentle taste that is great for finishing grilled meats and most dishes. The pink stuff, well for one it’s F-ing pink, so there’s that. And nutritionally, it’s better than the regular stuff so why not go for it? Did I mention that it’s pink?
KNIVES: Get a good one. Go now. We’ll wait. FACT: You are far less likely to cut your damn acrylics off with a sharp knife than a dull one. I know sharp = scary, but a dull knife can slip and drag and do way more damage to your digits and food as you use it. You don’t need that many either. A small serrated knife is essential for things like bread and tomatoes and a heavy duty 7-inch chef’s knife is perfect for heavy duty work like chopping. Add a laser sharp paring knife and you’re good to go.
NONSTICK PAN: This pan will save your life. Get one that is “green” or nontoxic. You can find these for sale at your local Bed Bath & Beyond. (Use a coupon!) I love my GreenPan cookware and in fact I have a couple of pans in different sizes. Your fried eggs will magically slip off, pancakes will never stick, and even fish will crisp but not leave scales.
CAST IRON PAN This is must-have kitchen item. Get one that is pre-seasoned—I personally love the Lodge brand and use it for everything. A super-hot cast iron pan will give your meat the sexiest, most even char, and leave the perfect golden crust on a fillet of fish. You have to care for your cast iron like you would a pair of Gucci pumps, but the results are always worth it. Cast iron pans are especially good for when you want that grilled flavor and char but it’s too cold outside to actually stand at a grill. Or, better yet, you can use your cast iron on the grill to do veggies while your shrimp is cooking. So versatile. It even subs as a weapon against intruders or pervy creepy Tinder dates—one smack on the head and lights out, a-hole!
MEASURING CUPS AND SPOONS: I mean, how else will you measure stuff? Get a set and put them in a handy drawer because you will be using them often. Look for a tempered glass measuring cup for liquids and a set of regular cups and spoons for measuring dry ingredients.
RIMMED BAKING SHEETS: Grab a few different kinds, you won’t regret it. Invest in two full-size, two half-size, and a couple more quarter-size ones. You can multitask with these babies: from baking cookies, roasting veggies, and blistering tomatoes to melting cheese on bread. Just don’t get flat baking sheets. Don’t even bother. The rims on rimmed baking sheets prevent spillage and make you look like a pro. Less spillage = less mess on cute outfit. Got it?
OTHER MUST-HAVE TOOLS: A can opener, a veggie peeler, a wine bottle opener, a couple of durable spatulas, wooden spoons, a candy thermometer and a meat thermometer, a whisk, a microplane, a mandoline, and two sets of metal tongs (a long one for grilling, preferably with rubber handles, and a shorter one for pan frying).
APPLIANCES: There are so many gadgets and electronics out there, I promise you don’t need them all. Half of what you see in the store is just random counter clutter. Find basic multitaskers that actually get the job done. (Also, stay away from 99 percent of the “As Seen on TV” kitchen things, too.) What you actually need:
• Toaster: Because toast.
• Supercharged blender: A good one can puree, and make soup, smoothies, and cool mom blended margaritas!
• Hand mixer: Think whipped cream, mashed taters… the list goes on and on.
• Mini food processor: Works like a charm for quick and easy minced or diced garlic, onion, or shallots. Especially helpful for those of you with obnoxiously long nails or scary knife skills.
• Rice cooker: Burnt rice is gross. Even as a professional, I still burn rice. I love my rice cooker. I use it for all kinds of grains, such as quinoa, farro, and couscous. Just drop the ingredients in, turn it on and set it, and walk away. Leaves so much more time for selfies and Instagram stories.
In addition to the gear, you’re going to need some pantry basics to take your cooking game to the next level.
EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL: Puh-lease get a good one. It’s worth the extra few dollars since this is going into basically everything. Avoid the crappy and cheap basic grocery brands. Most of the cheapy stuff is blended—not even really olive oil—and can be highly rancid if it’s been on the shelf too long. Look for something that is cold pressed, organic, and has a peppery finish. The more an olive oil tickles your throat when you taste it, the higher the plyphenol content is, which is a good thing. It all equals antioxidants and free radical healthy stuff. Trust.
NEUTRAL OIL: Don’t waste that high-class olive oil! If you’re making dressings or frying stuff, go neutral. Some recipes here call for canola; it’s not my favorite oil, but it is practically flavorless and it’s easy to find. I also like having coconut and avocado oils on deck because they are loaded with good-for-you fats.
NONSTICK COOKING SPRAY: Ladies, this is like the primer to your foundation! So many recipes will call for this: Add it to your next shopping trip. If you’re new to cooking it’s especially important to err on the side of caution and use that spray like a can of Aqua Net. Don’t ruin a dish by having half of it stuck to the bottom of your pan. Nonstick spray works wonders and there are some great healthier options like coconut oil spray and olive oil spray.
FLOUR: All-purpose flour will cover you for most of the recipes in this book. If gluten isn’t your friend, there are a ton of gluten-free all-purpose flours that can be subbed in almost any recipe. Even though I am okay to eat gluten, I often sub gluten-free and it makes my treats like breads and muffins feel less sinful. Your call.
SPICE RACK: Your rack will take you places, I promise. Personally, I like to flavor my food with fresh herbs as often as I can, but there are a few must-have dried spices that every Plastic needs to kick up their dishes. Think: flavor flavor flavor. The most common complaint about food is that it’s underseasoned. Don’t be shy, spice it up! Here are my favs: cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, bay leaves, oregano, red pepper flakes, herbs de Provence, smoked paprika, dried thyme, turmeric, and cinnamon.
Now that you’ve outfitted your space and gotten your essentials in order… PLEASE remember:
SAFETY FIRST. Go get a fire extinguisher, read the instructions, and have it nearby just in case. Also have a first aid kit in your house: the smallest cuts bleed the most. If you do cut yourself, a BandAid covered with a non-latex glove is the easiest way to ensure sanitary food. One time I microplaned my middle finger while I was filming the show Chopped and I almost got chopped. Nobody wants a finger in their salad.
All right friends, now that we have become better acquainted with our kitchens and, hopefully, have stocked them up with the good stuff, let’s get cooking! Remember, practice makes perfect; don’t get discouraged. Invite your army of skanks over often to try out new dishes. Make it fun. Just remember, there will be fires, blackened steaks, burnt cookies, and spilled milk, but as the old adage goes… never cry over spilled milk. However, you can cry over fried extensions or getting red wine on your new white Coachella jumpsuit—just not over milk.
Have fun, and remember the people who love to eat are always the best people.
Whore d’ Oeuvres
Now listen up, Plastics, your days of cutting up cheese sandwiches into fours and handing them out Glenn Coco–style, like they’re F-ing candy-grams, are now over. Life is all about first impressions. The same goes for a meal. So, we are introducing you to recipes for the most delicious starters you’ve ever tasted—
ones that may even impress all your new friends. I mean, thank God you finally have some. Just make sure you follow these recipes to a tee. You don’t want to scare everyone away like you always do. I mean, you must be getting sick of having to go with your parents to the Ladysmith Black Mambazo concert every weekend. God, that’s embarrassing. Consider these recipes your ticket to a real Saturday night.
Remember, whore d’oeuvres are meant to be served at the very beginning of a meal and not in-between courses (or your mom’s chest hair!), so make sure you have them ready to go before your guests arrive. No one wants to sit around making small talk with people they hate while the host is running around the kitchen like a chicken with its head cut off trying to get the first course ready.
Now, how many of these awesome appetizers is everyone going to devour? The limit does not exist, so make sure you prepare enough. Whether it’s Gretchen’s Wieners or It’s Not Regular Guac, It’s Cool Guac, one thing is for sure: Your nailbeds will still suck and your pores will still be too big. Now hop in loser, let’s get cooking.
So, You Agree? Fairy Toast
If Gretchen’s father invented Toaster Strudel, then Karen’s father definitely would have invented Fairy Toast.
These slices of fabulous have all the qualities of a Karen in toast form. They’re colorful, they sparkle, and you don’t have to be smart to make them. Use your fifth sense to design them anyway you want, just make sure your letters aren’t backwards, or you’ll have to put your entire fist in your mouth.
So, you agree? You think you’re pretty or you just love to eat things that are pretty?
• Start with the bread: Straightforward white bread will do the trick. Toast the bread to your desired crispness (or don’t toast it at all; I don’t know your life). Trim the crusts off, no one likes crusts and it’s prettier that way. Next, smooth a nice solid layer of butter over your slices, and do not try to get away with that “I Can’t Believe…” stuff. You know what I’m talking about. Pony up, use real butter.
• Here comes the fun: Cover your buttered slices with hundreds and thousands of rainbow sprinkles. Slice into cute triangles or little squares and place on your prettiest of party platters.
Note: Enjoy with a sparkling rosé, obvi.
Why should Amber D’Alessio have all the fun?
MAKES 24 WEINERS
Ex-boyfriends may be off limits, but these lip-smacking pigs in a blanket sure aren’t! This recipe is, like, so good even Jason won’t know what hit him (even though we know—it was that F-ing boom box).
Get your oven and aprons on beyotches! Nothing screams P-A-R-T-A-Y more than a pile of hot weiners, amirite?
• Preheat oven to 375°F. Open the can of crescent rolls and separate the 8 triangles out on a cutting board, then slice each triangle into 3 narrow triangles, so you should have a total of 24. (Because, math.) Place each Lit’l Smokie on the fat end of a triangle and roll it up. Place on a baking sheet that has been hit with a spritz of nonstick spray. Bake until golden brown, 12 to 15 minutes.
• Serve with a variety of fun mustards for your dipping pleasure and enjoy!
Whatever, I’m Getting Cheese Fries
When all you want to do is eat your feelings.
MAKES 4 COWS ONES
These nacho-inspired cheese fries are a no-brainer. Why would you even sit there for like one second suffering, when you could be indulging in some hearty emotional eating? Your fat ass will thank you.
- On Sale
- Oct 2, 2018
- Page Count
- 192 pages
- Grand Central Publishing