For over 50 years, people have looked to one contest for the most delicious, the most exciting and the most uniquely American recipes this country's home cooks have to offer. The Pillsbury Bake-Off Contest presents the very best of what people today are cooking for their families and friends. Now, nearly 400 prizewinning recipes from this famed event are gathered in one book, complete with gorgeous color photographs and personal profiles highlighting the people who created the recipes. The first Bake-Off Contest, in 1949, celebrated the culinary trends of the timesrecipes were made from scratch, the ingredient lists and steps were lengthy and breads and desserts comprised the bulk of the entries. Today's Bake-Off entries mirror the changing trends in home cooking with recipes that are quicker and easier to prepare. The use of convenience products has increased and flavors from around the world are featured, as reflected in a brand-new chapter: Quick & Easy Main Meals. Chicken Florentine Panini, the 2002 Grand Prize winner, is an Italian sandwich that gets its fresh-baked goodness from refrigerated pizza-crust dough. Bow-Thai Chicken takes a frozen stir=fry meal starter and combines it with the wonderful flavors of a Thai peanut sauce. Pillsbury Best of the Bake-Off Cookbook illustrates how home cooks have captured their ethnic heritages in dishes adapted from their grandparents' countries to modern kitchens and busier times. The stories are as inspiring as the recipes themselves, from 1996's Grand Prize winner, Kurt Wait, a single parent who developed his $1,000,000-winning recipe, Macadamia Fudge Torte, with the help of his son, to a 2002 winner for her Gnocchi Alfredo Casserole, Kelly Lynne Baxter, who remembers learning to cook alongside her mom and aunts. All the recipes are organized by easy-to-use chapters: Soups, Sandwiches and Snacks; Main Dishes; Side Dishes and Salads; Breads; Sweet Rolls and Coffee Cakes; Cookies and Bars; Cakes and Tortes; Pies and Tarts; and Other Desserts; as well as the new chapter, Quick & Easy Main Meals. Each chapter is filled with wonderful and often humorous behind-the-scenes stories from the Bake-Off Contest events. The recipes are sensational; the storeis are uplifting. Pillsbury Best of the Bake-Off Cookbook invites you into the kitchens and lives of the many people who have made the Pillsbury Bake-Off Contest the most loved and respected showplace for everyone to share their creative cooking talents.Pillsbury Company Staff is the author of 'Pillsbury Best of the Bake-Off Cookbook Recipes from America's Favorite Cooking Contest', published 2004 under ISBN 9781400051335 and ISBN 1400051339.