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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars160
4.8 out of 5 stars
Format: Hardcover|Change
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on 14 September 1999
For someone wanting to learn the basic concepts and theories of quality cooking, this is an absolutely ideal book. There is a fabulous range of recipies and techniques to cater for every occasion and all standards of cook, from beginner - through to advanced. Although many will ridicule the fact that Delia explains to us how to boil an egg properly - they should bear in mind that there is still a significant number of people who are genuinely lost in a kitchen, yet who genuinely want to learn how to do things properly right from the beginning. Although this hardbook illustrated version costs more than the paperback, it really is worth the extra money - illustrations clarifying Delia's step-by-step instructions as well as giving pointers as to how the dish in question should turn out.
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on 12 April 2006
I have about ten cookbooks, but by far Delia's Cookery Course is the best of them all. The recipes are clear, well laid out with different chapters, the book is sturdy and Delia writes interestingly on the various dishes and even equipment needed - but most importantly, the recipes are EASY!!!!!

I have never, ever failed with a recipe from this book, they are all so practical and clear. Delia Smith takes nothing for granted and explains each step simply. The dishes themselves are very tasty and look very nice. Everyone will be familiar with them as well, from the potato and leek soup to the Apple Crumble. One final thing: her souffles don't collapse! Buy it!!
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on 23 November 2005
I used many of her recipes at christmas time last year and plan on using them again this year. I made Christmas Pudding, mince pies and my own mincemeat. Her recipe for mincemeat was the best I have tried so far and this was the first time I made christmas pudding. All items turned out very well. The instructions are very clear and easy to follow. At no time was I confused about the instructions and that for me makes this book one I would recommend very highly.
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on 14 October 2009
I have a well-thumbed version of this book which has been my bible for 25years. I decided to buy the illustrated version for my daughter as she entered her first house in Uni. It is much more readable than the old version and the pics help.
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on 10 November 2003
Delia's writing style is wonderful - interesting, entertaining, and very easy-to-follow instructions. Complemented by the lovely photographs in this edition, Delia's inimitable style makes this book worth buying even if you don't have a kitchen. And if you do have a kitchen, you WILL be able to follow all these recipes even if you have hardly even boiled an egg before. The one negative comment I could make is that this compilation of recipes is starting to look a little dated now, and perhaps doesn't reflect the hugely increased range of products available in supermarkets. Having said that, for good home cooking you couldn't find a better starting point than this.
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on 6 June 2012
Had a copy of the original version back in 1982 and this was bought as a replacement. All the same recipes but in a bigger book with more photos. Nearly bought the cheaper, later version paperback, but glad I didn't. This version of the BBC book was first published in 1989, but the reprinted issue received is 2007. The book is made in the UK and the binding, paper quality and printing are all high quality. Great book, great information, recipes that work and essential reference manual for beginners and seasoned cooks; giving great basic information for all who aspire to succeed and love to cook great tasting food.
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on 15 March 2011
This may not be a new book but for a cooking novice like me it's a life saver on basic stuff that you'll need if you're forced into cooking. It has a great index so you can find things very quickly. Some great fail-safe recipes which you can't fail with. Highly recommended. It's become my cooking bible. My wife had a soft back copy which became very tattered (shows you how much it was used). Becausae of illness, she can't cook now so I replaced the old copy with a new hardback version. It's much more user friendly.
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on 15 January 2007
This book is probably the best book for someone just starting to cook.

The writing style is simple, easy, witty and the information is very, very useful.

However, I find the recipes very dated, like something that was fashionable in the 70's and 80's. I don't mean to say that cooking necesserily needs to be fashionable, but there is too much emphasis on very traditional, meaty, stogy dishes, very English-like, although - the recipes work. I am more geared to healthy, lighter eating, and I find the book a bit too heavy heanded with its recipes, but that's only me.

But I am sure, had the book been written more recently, it would have been much fresher (as they are some great recipes on Delia's website).

Perhaps the dishes are kept more traditional and old-fashioned as they may be easier to make for the beginner then some modern recipes, which perhaps use some less known ingredients. But this is the metter of taste and choice.

So I would say, this book is the best book for the cooking instructions and methods, but for the recipes, I would say it is so-so, at least for me.
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on 9 May 2011
I bought for my brother in law after he had a look through my copy. It is a great book for the basics of cooking and has loads of useful information about different cuts of meat and various different types of food. I have certain recipes that I always follow, but some of the other recipes are a bit out dated. I definitely recommend it as a reference book.
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on 12 April 2010
In this book Delia covers all of the basics of cookery and is definitely designed for the home cook rather than a chef. The many recipes given include traditional British fare along with well known international meals such as goulash and mousaka but also extend to other more adventurous dishes of kind Delia is famous for. Although entitled a course it is not a series of lessons. Instead it is divided into sections around meat, fish, poultry, pasta and so on. This makes it easy to use as either a reference book or a recipe book.

The hard copy format is well made so that the book conveniently lies open at any page without the user having to stand something on top as this reviwer often has to do with paperbacks. The illustrations are excellent and the text is supported at points with helpful diagrams. Two minor criticisms: the book is revision of an earlier version but is not quite as up-to-date as the blurb implies. Some useful products now found in most supermarkets are not mentioned. For example there are now some quite good low fat versions of dairy products available but then Delia is a self confessed traditionalist and her heart is not really in low fat cookery. Secondly although she acknowledges modern healthy diets she seldom suggests healthy alternatives in her recipes. This reviewer is by no means the only person on a low fat diet for medical reasons who would have appreciated this.

This is one of the most attractive and useful cookery books I have seen. As a virtual beginner as a cook it has already become my prime reference book.
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