Gwyneth Paltrow wants to make the most out of mealtime.
And she aims to do just that with her latest cookbook, It’s All Easy: Delicious Weekday Recipes for the Super-Busy Home Cook. As the title suggests, the star’s third culinary tome “is meant to be a road map: a self-help book for the chronically busy cook,” she wrote in the introduction.
As expected, the book is full of Instagram-worthy recipes, many of which are healthy, Goop-friendly (think gluten-free, dairy-free) dishes. But, maybe more surprisingly, Paltrow also includes comfort favorites like 30-minute parmesan cheese carbonara.
“Although food in this book tends to be on the healthier side,” the Goop founder said. “We have also included recipes with more standard ingredients (some cheese, some regular flour) because, well, it’s easier.”
Paltrow, who co-authored the cookbook with Goop food editor Thea Baumann, also packed it with tips and tricks to help take the fuss out of dinnertime. For example, Paltrow stresses the importance of preparation. “Part of the secret to making really good, easy food is make sure your kitchen is stocked with ingredients some of which are not run-of-the-mill,” she wrote.
On the lengthy list: oils (coconut, olive and white truffle); vinegars (champagne, apple cider vinegar); canned goods (beans, anchovies, chicken stock); and rices, pastas, flours, etc. (brown rice, chickpea flour and dried pasta); go-to produce (avocados, ginger); spices (chili flakes an, vanilla extract), freezer favorites (pancetta, coconut ice cream), and dessert ingredients (date syrup, raw cacao); condiments and sauces (Sriracha, grainy mustard, fish sauce, Gochujang paste).
“Yeah it takes time to procure all these bottles, pastes, and seasonings,” she said. “but one trip to the Asian grocery store (in person or online) and a big stock-up ate Whole Foods or other specialty food shop will enable you to make quick, easy and authetic-tasting dishes for months.”
The book also gives tips on the basics, like how to best boil an egg. “Thea is the master of getting the center of the yolk just perfect for the recipe. I set out like a scientist with a timer to learn exactly how she does it,” said Paltrow. The trick, which is used in Paltrow’s spring veggie ramen recipe (see below), could not be simpler. “Six minutes yields an egg with just-set whites and a super runny yolk, which is perfect for ramen,” Paltrow tells PEOPLE. “If you prefer eggs a bit more cooked, set the timer for 7 minutes for medium-boiled and 9 minutes for hard-boiled.”
Gwyneth Paltrow’s Spring Veggie Ramen
1 tbsp. plus 1 tsp. finely grated ginger
½ cup ponzu
4 large eggs
12 oz. ramen noodles, cooked and drained
20 sugar snap peas, cut into ½-in. slices
8 shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced
12 baby bok choy, cut into 1-in. pieces
2 tbsp. lemon zest
4 scallions, thinly sliced
1. Combine the ginger, ponzu and 8 cups water in a large saucepan, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer gently while you prepare the rest of the recipe.
2. Bring a small saucepan of water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the eggs, making sure they are completely submerged, and keep the water at a steady boil for 6 minutes (setting a timer is recommended). Remove the eggs and run them under cold water to stop the cooking process.
3. Divide the noodles among four bowls and top with the sugar snap peas, mushrooms and bok choy. Pour the broth over the noodles and vegetables, and finish each bowl with lemon zest, scallions and a soft-boiled egg cut in half.
Active time: 20 minutes
Total time: 25 minutes