Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Jamie's Food Revolution: Rediscover How To Cook Simple, Delicious, Affordable Meals - Jamie Oliver

Jamie's Food Revolution: Rediscover How To Cook Simple, Delicious, Affordable Meals
Jamie Oliver
Hyperion Publishing
Copyright: 2009

The publisher's blurb:
Welcome to my Food Revolution. This book is inspired by all the people I've met who thought they could never and would never learn how to cook. Of course, that kind of thinking is like a red rag to a bull to me because I believe that simple home cooking is one of the most basic, primal skills that every single person on this planet should have in order to look after themselves, their families and their friends.
So I've written this book to empower you (or the person you're buying this for) to learn how to cook as easily and as quickly as possible. I've done this by picking a whole load of recipes that we all love to eat and giving you my easy versions of them, using clear instructions and step-by-step pictures to hold your hand and open up a whole new world of great food. Whether you're a reluctant beginner or a good cook who just appreciates simplicity, allow me and this book to help you cook some truly delicious, crowd-pleasing meals.
At the time I bought my copy of Jamie's Food Revolution, I'd never seen any of Jamie Oliver's TV shows. I bought the book based solely on the strength of the recipes, pictures and descriptions. The food, as described in this book is all simple, everyday stuff that most families should like: Mac and Cheese, soups, some breakfast things, dinners, salads etc. All that goes with the title, as the theme of Jamie's Food Revolution is that the food be simple, delicious and affordable. 

All of the recipes I've tried have been that - although I sometimes wonder about the Chicken Fajitas, cost-wise. They're one of my favourite recipes though. Every time I've made them, even when I've doubled the recipe or more, it's worked out. Jamie's time-frame of 19 minutes though, I find impossible to keep to, although it's still a relatively quick meal to make. 

Another favourite, and I thought I had a photo for it, is the Macaroni and Cauliflower Cheese Bake version of Mac & Cheese. I don't know how many times I've made this recipe now, but it's fast and easy - especially if you cheat and buy the pre-grated cheese. I've also only managed to screw it up once. We think the problem was using low fat/no fat sour cream instead of the regular stuff. As with the Chicken Fajitas, this is another one of those recipes that does well doubled - although the odds of needing to do that are slim. Most of the recipes (not the Fajitas or the Cheat's Fresh Pasta with Cherry Tomato Sauce though) feed more than the stated number of people.

In all of the recipes I've tried to date, the ingredients have all been widely available. Nothing too exotic, nor are there too many ingredients, which is a plus. Honestly, when I started looking through Jamie's Food Revolution I kept finding a ton of recipes I wanted to try some time. I haven't gotten through them all yet, either.

The idea for this book is to teach people who don't know how to cook the basics - and it's great for that, but don't ignore the book if you know how to cook already - there's lots of great ideas and delicious meals in here: Fruit smoothies or pancakes for breakfast or a snack? Yum! No-bake cheesecake? Super rich, but incredibly delicious. You'd just better be feeding a lot of people for this recipe. 

I love the way the photos are set up in Jamie's Food Revolution too. Every recipe has it's photo, but not just one. There's a series of photos showing how the dish is supposed to look as you go through the process of making it. I find that really great for showing how something's supposed to be cut and the like.

As I said before in my Top Five Cookbooks post last year, this is one of my favourite cookbooks. I can't recommend it enough. 

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