My kitchen shelves are stuffed with cookery books, and if I were honest I would have to admit that despite this when I am in a rush I mostly revert to my few reliable favourites (Delia’s Complete Cookery/ Good Housekeeping/ Jamie Oliver).
When a new book arrives I have a good flick through, mark up some dishes to try, and resolve not to put it on the shelf where it will get swallowed by the heap that is my bookshelf until I have cooked at least 10 meals from it. Then I use only a few recipes and go back to good old Jamie. I guess half the problem is that the everyday cooking of meals can be boring unless you want to spend hours at it to create a Class 1 meal– which I only really do for family birthdays and supper parties.
Then when I want a recipe that I have cooked before it of course takes ages flicking through all the recipe books to find it. For this Jamie is no help at all, as I now have to trawl through six of his books too. Which is a long way round to saying that I promised myself I wouldn’t buy another one – except of course I did. I have succumbed to Tamasin Day-Lewis’ new book called ‘Food You Can’t Say No To’. Simple ingredients and simple meals. The next one to try is her Chocolate and Morello Cherry Fridge Cake. It takes 10mins to make, there is nothing to bake, and it looks divine.
I am a great trawler of weekend papers and magazines for new recipes, and always have a little pile of cuttings to try out. Now of course there is Tuesday night’s Great British Bake Off which has inspired me to get bread baking this weekend.
And on the subject of new cookery books, here’s one for the students – Simply Good Pasta, by Peter Sidwell. No frills cooking, not much weighing, cheap and tasty. Send it in your next ‘package of love’