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Variety is the spice of life and in our Cookery, Food and Drink section we have a range of new books that you can sit back and enjoy or get your hands messy and whip up something fantastic!
Nigella Lawson is a champion of the home cook and her new book celebrates the food she loves to cook for friends and family.
Stir-frying – quick, easy and healthy – that ticks quite a few boxes so good to find this guide from Ching-He Huang. The how-to starter pages are excellent laying out the “rules” of stir-frying so clearly and the recipes cover a wide range with a very strong Vegetarian section. She writes with great enthusiasm and love of stir-fried food and this brings confidence in using ingredients new to many Wok beginners, a great all-round guide to using the Wok. ~ Sue Baker Like for Like Reading: My Kitchen Table: 100 Quick Stir-Fry Recipes by Ken Hom Ching’s Fast Food: 110 Quick & Healthy Chinese Favourites by Ching-He Huang
Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall’s Veg Every Day has been a deserved bestseller, it’s fresh approach to increasing the plant foods in our diet has been inspiration for many. Now he strips it back to an almost totally vegan way of eating – so no dairy or refined foods which means a healthy number of gluten-free recipes as well. With ease of preparation a major influence, these are great recipes for the time-poor who want to improve their diet and veg intake. ~ Sue Baker Like for Like Reading Leith’s Vegetable Bible by Polly Tyrer Riverford Farm Cook Book by Guy Watson & Jane Baxter
There are any number of books on veg growing, usually a bit depressing as there seems so much that can go wrong but there are fewer guides on what to do when it all goes right and you have a crop and even more miraculous you have a glut. (courgettes being the worst offender). So – you need a kitchen companion, a guide to growing and some inspiration for the cooking. Here it is, Darina Allen’s invaluable kitchen companion. As a self-taught gardener – and cook I’ve found a whole new information source in Grow, Cook, Nourish, the how-to is good, the recipes are fresh and inviting and most valuable of all – shows how much of a plant you can eat – runner bean leaves and young carrot tops for example. A five star book for any cook or gardener. ~ Sue Baker Like for Like Reading: No Dig Organic Home & Garden by Charles Dowding Grow Your Own, Eat Your Own: Making the Most of Your Garden Produce by Bob Flowerdew
The Whisky of the Scottish Islands, a tour, an investigation, a fact-finding mission done with the utmost geniality by a man who’s blood is probably a pale amber hue. You can almost smell the peat, hear the clink of glasses and see the wind on the heather! Ian Buxton knows the islands well and there is much anecdotal history of past holidays and visits which add to the interest. I am moderately interested in whisky but the attractions of the islands – and their people interest me more and I was pleased to find the journey with Ian Buxton worthwhile – and most enjoyable. ~ Sue Baker If you're interested in books about Whisky you might also like Spirit of Place: Whisky Distilleries of Scotland by Charles MacLean and Raw Spirit: In Search of the Perfect Dram by Iain Banks.
If your palate has become a trifle jaded then this is the book for you. Time to take the family meals up a notch and experiment with some new techniques. This is an inspirational guide for home cooks introduced in Glyn Purnell’s jaunty and well recognised style. ~ Sue Baker Like for Like Reading Kitchin Suppers by Tom Kitchin Tom’s Table: My Favourite Everyday Recipes by Tom Kerridge
This is the story of the author’s father-in-law, Carlo Contini, and her father, Alfonso, but predominantly it is Carlo’s story. Born into a large Italian family living just outside Naples, we are told of his poverty stricken but mostly happy childhood, then the horrible deprivations of the war and on into peace where Carlo joins the police special forces. He’s sent by his employers to Edinburgh to learn English. Interspersing his story is that of a Scottish based Italian community in East Lothian. While in Edinburgh Carlo meets Olivia, the daughter of an Italian delicatessen owner and they fall in love. Olivia’s brother, Vittorio, is despatched to Italy to check on Carlo’s family where we learn of some deep-buried secret but it is not revealed to Vittorio and so the wedding is able to take place. Carlo remains in Edinburgh and helps build the family business which flourishes today as Valvona and Crolla, a renowned delicatessen, restaurant and wine merchant. The warmth and charm of these Italian families radiates from the pages. The author has a light touch, neither maudlin nor sentimental which makes for a delightful book with the added bonus of a smattering of mouth-watering Italian recipes. ~ Sarah Broadhurst
Featuring recipes containing exotic ingredients such as fig, rose petal, saffron, aniseed, orange blossom, pistachio and cardamom - to indulgent cakes, biscuits, tarts, puddings, cheesecakes and ice cream. Sweet includes over 110 innovative recipes, from Blackberry and Star Anise Friands, Tahini and Halva Brownies, Persian Love Cakes, Middle Eastern Millionaire's Shortbread, and Saffron, Orange and Honey Madeleines to Flourless Chocolate Layer Cake with Coffee, Walnut and Rosewater and Cinnamon Pavlova with Praline Cream and Fresh Figs. There is something here to delight everyone - from simple mini-cakes and cookies that parents can make with their children to showstopping layer cakes and roulades that will reignite the imaginations of accomplished bakers.
'Most of the dishes I cook are big dishes as we are a family of six, my partner Ben and myself, my stepsons, Hal and Orion, and our sons Bay and Oscar,' and so starts Kirstie Allsopp's very first cookbook. As someone who didn't learn to cook at her mother's apron strings, Kirstie has had to learn as she's gone along. Luckily she's been blessed with great advice from the cooks, bakers and chefs she's worked with and recipes inherited from friends and families over the years. In Kirstie's Real Kitchen she brings together her favourite recipes - the ones she relies on to feed her family, and whoever else happens to be around. From weekday suppers and entertaining a crowd, to dealing with fussy eaters and outdoor eating (essential for families with lots of boys), the book is full of the recipes that are at the centre of Kirstie's family life.
An extension of James Duigan’s clean and lean philosophy, a book that brings together diet, exercise and mindfulness to help readers create change in their lives. It aims to get everyone conscious of what they eat and how they move and find ways to become fitter and with a higher level of health, both mental and physical. ~ Sue Baker Like for Like Reading The Louise Parker Method: Lean for Life by Louise Parker Lean in 15 – The Shift Plan: 15-Minute Meals and Workouts to Keep you Lean and Healthy by Joe Wicks
Giorgio Locatelli has another family beside his much-loved wife and children, his work family at his restaurant Locanda Locatelli and there are many recipes here cherished as traditions for their afternoon meals together alongside favourites enjoyed at home in Puglia and London. If you love Italian food, you will take to Made at Home, the reminiscences enhancing the recipes making for both enjoyment and anticipation at all those new dishes to be created. It’s good food too – it won’t involve every pan, pot and utensil you possess and you won’t be left wondering what some of the ingredients are either. The subtitle says it all – The food I cook for the people I love. ~ Sue Baker Like for Like Reading Marcus at Home by Marcus Wareing Gordon Ramsay’s Ultimate Home Cooking by Gordon Ramsay
With a bit of organisation and Gino D’Acampo’s recipes you really can make your own in the time it would take to reheat a ready meal. There’s a 20-minute rule to the recipes, a good use of store cupboard ingredients with the addition of fresh meat and veg. Unlike many of the cookbooks that promise a good meal on the table in short order, this really does have the recipes that would do it. ~ Sue Baker Like for Like Reading Nigellisima: Instant Italian Inspiration by Nigella Lawson Jamie’s Italy by Jamie Oliver
There has never been a greater interest in cooking. Never been such a wide range of accessible ingredients from all over the world. Cultural diversity has led to us all broadening our culinary horizons. What better time to celebrate the sumptuous array of delectable books on offer, covering all aspects of our growing obsession with all things food … and drink (!). You won’t find the obvious choices here, the big name chefs and TV show spin-offs. We hope that we’ve lovingly compiled a special menu of off the beaten track titles to fire your imaginations and your ovens. Uncork your inner sommelier, sauté your inner chef and share a spoonful of our passion for something saucy, lip-smacking, eye-feasting and thirst-quenching. Bon Appetit!
We hope you’ll find our Food and Drink category full of titles that can be enjoyed either sitting in the armchair or used in a more practical way in the kitchen. Some of them provide a mixture of both.