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Delia's Cakes
Delia's Cakes
by Delia Smith
Edition: Hardcover
Price: 5.00

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Font makes book hard to use, 18 Oct 2013
This review is from: Delia's Cakes (Hardcover)
Having used Delia's books in the past (Not baking) I bought this one with out checking it out before hand. What a mistake to have made.
The font colour chosen for the ingredients makes it imposable to refer to when cooking. It's a light gold ink in a very thin font printed on to shiny paper. Even with my glasses on I find it hard to read.
The other thing that is wrong is the baking timings. You end up having to add at least 10 minutes to most things to get them to the correct stage for removal from the oven. The last two cakes I made today have still been wet at the recommended finish times.
Against my better judgement I followed the book's instructions for turning out the sponge cakes; and ended up with broken cakes.
Were this my only recipe book or I was new to baking, I might start to think it was my oven or lack of skills that was to fault.
However when following Mary Berry's Baking Bible or my old copy of the Good Housekeeping baking book, the times are correct and the instructions reliable.
I was also surprised to see Delia pushing kitchen equipment for sale. Delia is actually teaming up with manufacturers like Silverwood and Bake-O-Glide and pushes these items at the start of the book.
I was lead to understand that she personally checks each recipe six times before publication. I now think this must be an urban myth. Perhaps her books are now being ghost written? Who knows? All I know is that I have had difficulty reading the book; and then ended up with poor results.

The Ladies Work Table Book - Needlework, Embroidery, Knitting & Crochet
The Ladies Work Table Book - Needlework, Embroidery, Knitting & Crochet

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Badly writen and not proof read for knitting, 6 April 2011
This book is badly written. Whoever put it together has never asked a knitter to proof read the knitting parts before publication. There are glaring errors in the parts relating to knitting. I have not checked out the other parts relating to sewing or crochet so can't comment on those parts.
It is the worst knitting instruction book I have ever seen. Amazon should consider removing it of its kindle lists as it will cause the Amazon refund department more trouble than its worth with customers requesting refunds.

Respect The Spindle
Respect The Spindle
by Abby Franquemont
Edition: Paperback
Price: 11.89

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Learn to spin using a spindle, 4 Jun 2010
This review is from: Respect The Spindle (Paperback)
Spinning on a spindle is thousands of years old. It has its origins in the mists of time and was how our ancestors produced thread for the first garments and blankets made by mankind. The spindle predates the spinning wheel and any other technology invented in the last 2000 years.
However there is one other reason that working with a spindle has made a huge difference in my life. Learning to spin on a spindle has provided me with enhanced mobility due to the sedate movements required in order to form yarn. The physiotherapy I have got has been tremendous. My shoulders now have more movement than they have had in years.
The movements involved in using a spindle to make yarn, look very much like Ti Chi. The added benefit to this light form of exercise and rhythmic movement is yarn as a bi-product to use for your knitting, crochet and weaving.
The author uses numerous photos to demonstrate the technique to using a spindle and how to then ply your yarn ready for final use in garment production. This author has a number of Youtube videos demonstrating how to use a spindle. Within the spinning and crafting community this book represents a real solution to a gap in the market that has frustrated would be spindlers for a number of years who wish to learn but didn't have access to a wonderful book like this before.
The author learned to spin as a child aged five and her wealth of experience at spinning shows in her teaching technique.
It's well worth buying this book if you wish to learn this ancient technique.

Village School (Fairacre 1)
Village School (Fairacre 1)
by Miss Read
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.39

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A bygone time that brings 1950's village life alive., 20 July 2008
Miss Read, is an unmarried head-teacher in a small village school. The two classrooms at Fairacre School take all the village children from age five until they are eleven. There is no running water in either the school or the schoolhouse where Miss Read lives, and toilets for the school children, consists of a wooden seat on a large bucket. For the villagers of Fairacre, busses run three times a week to the nearby market town.
Things may sound rather desperate in Fairacre when compared to our modern lives, where kids expect the newest fashions and expensive gismos, and we as adults expect to jump in a car and drive to the nearest supermarket to buy a weeks shopping.
For me however 1950's Fairacre brings back a lot of memories of being educated in a village school in Britain during the early 1970's. When Miss Read describes the ecclesiastical architecture of the school with its arched windows letting in light but at the same time being too high off the ground to see out of. I just close my eyes and I am instantly transported to my schoolroom when I was seven years old. I can still smell the polish from the wood floor and the soap in the cloakroom where our coats and satchels hung on pegs with our little towels and homemade "Dap Bags" containing our footwear for PE.
Miss Read is a keen observer of village life, nature, and the changing seasons. The village school life unfolds with gentle humour and insightful social commentary. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys social comedy. Some of the children who feature in this book go on to be lifelike characters in later books. Joseph Coggs is my favourite of the children who announces at the end of his first day in the "babies class"; that the toys and the clay were fun, but his favourite bit was dinner time.
With Village School you enter a bygone time that brings 1950's village life alive.
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British Food
British Food
by Mark Hix
Edition: Paperback

36 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A taste of good food, 5 Mar 2006
This review is from: British Food (Paperback)
It’s March 2006 and we have worn our daffodils here is Wales for St David’s day on the 1st. On the 17th it will be the turn of the Irish and St Patrick’s day will be here with its vibrant celebrations in pubs up and down the UK. Shamrocks will be out and the Guinness will flow. Here in my home we will be eating Boiled Bacon with white cabbage and steamed potatoes. Due to my families very mixed British heritage we are a lively mix of Welsh, Irish and Scots, so Haggis neaps and tatties, Faggots and peas are regular features on our dinning table along with the wonderful Champ in summer.
February 28th this year was Shrove Tuesday and Pancakes were the order of the day. I bought the maple syrup and this is where I started to think how food in Britain has evolved over the last forty years. Here in Wales as a child Pancakes were not served with maple syrup but lemon and sugar. I was twenty-one before I discovered putting dried currants in the soft batter in the pan at the start of cooking is a very typically Welsh and Scottish way of making pancakes. In London when I made a batch of Pancakes I was not prepared for the commotion a few dark speckles of dried fruit would make to my party guests one Shrove Tuesday.
These days Tandori Chicken and Duck in Hoi sin sauce are as much a part of mealtime as sun dried tomatoes and a stir of Pesto in boiled pasta. This diversity at mealtime is the result of two major things. The first is the migration to Britain of so many people from around the globe; the second is the advent of supermarkets making ingredients from round the world so easy to buy. My father was a merchant sailor so introduced my mother to Indian and Chinese food before I was born. Ethnic diversity of food has always been most welcome when it comes to mealtime in our home; especially if someone else was cooking as my mother just had no interest in cooking at all.
Here in Britain we have not always had so widely available access to cooking ingredients. Food used to be cooked in the season it was available fresh from the gardens and farms where it was grown. Most homes here in Wales espied to own a pig to make the year a little easier on the family. The pig used to eat all the kitchen waste that we now use on our compost piles and then provide wonderful manure for growing fantastic organic vegetables the rest of the year.
So my question is this. What do you think traditional British Food would be like if we removed all the pasta, pizza and curry from our cupboards?
If you are looking at rather emptier store cupboards in your mind's eye and wondering what you are going to feed the family? May I recommend a book called British Food by Mark Hix? Here is a book that brings together a whole host of typically British food. Mark Hix has put together 120 recipes that show how easy and tasty British food can be. Among the selection in the book are snacks, soups, meat and fish dishes as well as traditional puddings. Each recipe has a colour photograph to entice your taste buds.
The book starts off with an introduction and guide to ingredients that is typically British in origin. The seasonal availability of ingredients is covered and a list of game birds in date order ends this introduction.
So far I have made Pan Haggerty, Drop scones, Scotch broth and Spotted dick. The next thing to make on my list is Cornish pasties. Each recipe is simply laid out and easy to follow. This book is quickly becoming a firm favourite in my home. So the next time you stand in front of the kitchen cupboards and ask yourself what to cook for tea or dinner, may I suggest you cook something British and in season.

by Clare Foster
Edition: Paperback
Price: 7.02

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Compost made easy, 15 Feb 2006
This review is from: Compost (Paperback)
This book takes some of the fear out of making compost. A compost pile does not have to be a slimy pile of rotting vegetable matter at the bottom of your garden. It can be a thing of beauty, which restores order to your garden and also helps to cure some of the problems that build up over time in garden soil. Think of well made compost as being a bottle of natural antibiotics for Mother Nature.
This book is easy to understand and follow the guidance. There is no gobbledegook in it and all the science contained has been explained in a clear manner. There are diagrams to help you build various types of compost bins and wormeries so there is something for all gardeners who wish to start making their own “Black Gold”

A History of Kitchen Gardening
A History of Kitchen Gardening
by Susan Campbell
Edition: Paperback

26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A history tour through a kitchen garden, 15 Feb 2006
This book is a delight to read. Each page unfolds with a little information about the design and evolution of the kitchen garden. It follows the needs of vegetable growers in the early days through to the large estates who grew vegetables that today we only import from outside the UK.
The dedication to the kitchen garden is always close to the surface as you follow in the tour round the kitchen garden. Tips are placed through out the book so new gems are there to make you stop and think how they could be used again in your smaller garden to produce some of the year round bounty that was a real part of the old kitchen gardeners skills.

Where's My Cow? (Discworld)
Where's My Cow? (Discworld)
by Terry Pratchett
Edition: Hardcover
Price: 7.69

15 of 24 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A tie in too far, 6 Nov 2005
"Where's my cow" is only for the Pratchet fan with more money than sense. I bought the fist ever Discword novel when it was first out and over the years have enjoyed both the books and a number of the tie in items that are sold. Hell I even went to the first ever Discworld convention and have the T-shirt and limited edition plaque of the Librarian in a hammock drinking a banana daiquiri to prove it. But this book has turned my stomach a nice shade of green with anger.
This book I am sorry to say is a rip off. If you must find out what it is like do not buy it but go to the library or read it in the bookstore. It will take you four minutes to read it and then you can put it back nice and tidy on the shelf. Keep your money in your pocket until Mr Pratchet brings out a book with more than a handful of pages in it. I have to give this one star, as zero stars are not an option

One Big Happy: Should I Spit on Him?
One Big Happy: Should I Spit on Him?
by Rick Detorie
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars Welcome to the, 5 Aug 2005
Rick Detorie rocks. The cartoons of Rutie and her brother Jo are excellent from start to finish. Pick up this book of comic strips and chuckle for hours.

Raven's Strike
Raven's Strike
by Patricia Briggs
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
Price: 4.75

25 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magic with out elves and dragons, 5 Aug 2005
This book was a complete page-turner that kept me gripped till the end. this is the second book in the Raven series and I loved both of them.
The characters are well developed and I could see them in my mind's eye as I read in to the small hours of the morning. I will be reading more of this authors work in the future.

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