'Masterchef is back but not in the way you might have expected. This time 'Masterchef Goes Large', with 100 contestants (amateur cooks) being put through their paces, tested and re-tested to find the ultimate Masterchef 2005'
Durable board covers open to 192 shiny, well laid out and easy-to-read, high quality pages, split over chapters:
1. Soups and Starters
2. Fish and Shellfish
3. Meat Poultry and Game
4. Salads and Vegetarian
sandwiched between an introduction by John Torode and a List of Suppliers, introduced by Gregg Wallace.
Colour photography throughout.
'John Torode has cooked at many of the finest restaurants in the country and now runs his own. Gregg Wallace has grown and supplied produce to some of the top chefs in the UK. Both used their extensive knowledge and expertise in the kitchen to guide and test contestants as Masterchef judges, along with Peter Richards, the Masterchef Mentor, who is a respected chef and teacher at Westminster College, and taught Jamie Oliver, among many others, to cook.'
As a book associated with a TV series it is typical of its type, but is greatly enhanced by written sections called:
'Masterclasses', by John Torode,
which are slotted in between the recipes and are designed to provide a backbone of basic working techniques, including
basic recipe/techniques for:
* Basic Hollandaise Sauce
* Egg Basics
'Masterchef Top Tips' are useful snippets of information dotted throughout, although Gregg Wallace can be a touch 'near-the-knuckle', at times:
'If like me, you enjoy a gamy flavour from your dead 'Bambi', ask your butcher if the meat has been hung.'
In his introduction to the 'List of Suppliers', Gregg nudges the 'supermarkets' knowledge of its fresh produce:
' .....then why are you happy to buy food from nice, polite young men and women in supermarkets who obviously know nothing about food? Ask the man behind the meat counter, the one on his way to a fancy dress party dressed as a butcher, how long the beef has been hung. Ask the chap stacking cauliflowers on shelves his opinion of purple sprouting broccoli over calabrese. You will get hilarious responses.'
So it is mildly surprising that Marks & Spencer, Sainsburys and Waitrose are the only 'supermarkets' to appear on the 3-page 'Supplier List', which is handy because, apart from a page and three quarters for London, it does also include names, addresses and telephone numbers of selected UK/Ireland specialists such as 'Fishworks' and 'The Fine Cheese Company, both of Bath', 'Langley Chase Organic Farm', 'Peppers by Post', 'Lewis & Cooper' of Northallerton to name just a few - truly useful bookmarks at your fingertips, for when that special or elusive ingredient is required.