Wednesday 27 May 2020

Cookbooks Galore

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We’re now two months into lockdown, the supermarket shelves are generally full once more, and we’ve all been doing a lot of home cooking. I thought this would be a good time to share some of my favourite cookbooks.

I picked up this book over a decade ago before heading off to University and fending for myself for the first time. It’s a great book designed for cooks with limited equipment and money in mind. The spicy risotto and chocolate pudding were firm favourites but there’s so much more on offer. All recipes are rated on difficulty so you can choose your food according to how ambitious you’re feeling.

I feel like almost everyone I know has a copy of this book on their shelves, and it’s a good’un. Full of great ideas for getting more veg into your diet. Personal favourites are the beetroot hummus and a newly discovered peanut noodle salad (even after years of use it’s got some great treasures to discover).

A great book for anyone wanting to take a tentative step into the world of vegetarianism (or those already firmly committed). It offers suggestions for every meal of the day, seasonal ingredients, and even some yummy desserts to round off the day. My most made recipes are the giant wholeweat cousous and sweet potato, and the porcini risotto. The blueberry pancakes are also great as a treat to start the day.

A brilliant book for any health conscious cook, this book is packed full of healthy meal ideas (and healthier desserts), with details about what nutrients each recipe supplies and more general advice about making sure you get enough of what you need. The walnut burgers are great, as are many of the salads and the smoothies. This is probably the book I’ve made the most variety of recipes from, they generally don’t take more than about half an hour to make so it’s perfect for mid-week meals.

A wonderful book full of wholesome, nutritious meal ideas. There’s rarely a week that passes where I don’t make one of her recipes. She has a great website so you can try out some of her recipes before buying the book. They’re often fairly lengthy recipes so make great weekend meals, and the leftovers are perfect for packed lunches during the week.

I’ve had this book on my shelves since it first came out and it’s probably my most used baking book. Lots of tasty, homely recipes, both savoury and sweet, it will inspire you to bake more often. A few of my favourites are the custard creams, chocolate chip cookies, and the blueberry muffin loaf.

Paris Boulangerie Patisserie: Recipes from Thirteen Outstanding French Bakeries by Linda Dannenberg
The first time I went to Paris I fell completely in love with the delicious treats on offer in its boulangeries. It completely ruined the British equivalents for me and I came back determined to learn how to make them myself. This book is a wonderful way to do so. It gives details about some of the author’s most loved Paris boulangeries and offers some recipes from each. The recipes are generally very labour intensive but absolutely worth the effort.

This is a fairly new addition to my baking bookshelf but every recipe looks delicious. There’s a great range of bakes and so far they’ve turned out just as tasty as they promised. Currently munching my way through the white chocolate and coconut semifreddo.

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