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on 5 September 2012
Have been using this book to create almost all our meals for 5 weeks now.

The recipes are very simple to follow and have all tasted really good.

I have lost 1 Stone so far and my wife has lost 8 pounds so we are both very happy with this.

Not just down to the recipes in the book as you have to exercise as well, I go mountain biking and my wife goes to a gym.

So for now we are going to continue to use the recipes in the book - give it a try as it does help to loose weight.

***Update 1 after nine weeks ***

Have now lost 2 Stone and the wife 1 Stone - still using the book for most meals.

***Update 2 after seventeen weeks ***

Have now lost over 3 Stone and the wife 1 Stone 4 pounds.
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on 30 July 2012
What do foodie minded (and bellied) folk eat when they are cutting back a bit? I've wondered this often and it was with much anticipation that I opened this one up.

I wasn't disappointed either. The hairy bikers have done a good book here with some excellent recipes and pictures that make you want to try the recipes. Food chapters are: Breakfast & Brunch, One-Pan Dishes, Grills & Roasts, Pies, Stews, Vegetables & Salads, Fakeaways, Pasta & Rice, Puddings & Cakes and Lunch Boxes & Snacks.

Many of the dishes have a comforting feel, some are spicy, some light and delicious like: Salmon with chilli Ginger Sauce, Peppered Steak with Mushrooms, Lemon and Thyme Roast Chicken, Cajun Spiced Chicken with Potato Wedges and Chive Dip, Chicken and Ham Tangle Pie, Lean Lamb Hotpot, Lamb Tagine, Chilli Salad Bowl, Chilli Con Carne and a number of really great sounding curries. This is just a taster of the recipes, I fancy trying a lot more. My favourites of the sweet recipes are Summer Fruit Meringues and Chewy Cranberry and Apricot Bites.

I've recently taken a lot more interest in cooking to lose a bit of weight, for much the same reasons as the bikers - to give my health a boost - so this book has come at just the right time for me. Starting off tonight with one I already have the ingredients for, their Chicken and Mushroom Risotto.
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on 14 August 2012
Having watched one of the programmes, my hubby and I decided to look for an accompanying cook book. This is it! The recipes are great and what a variety of ingredients.

There are six of us at home, me, hubby, 2 x 20 year olds, 1 x 19 year old and 1 x 16 year old. All with large appetites, but only me needing to lose weight.

I prepared the ingredients for the casserole, put it all in the slow cooker, switched it on and went to work. Late afternoon, I received a text message from my 20 year old son explaining that he would be out until after 7pm, but could I please, please, please keep him some of the casserole as it smelled so good!

When I got home, I had to practically fight my way through the rest of the family - it was like a scene from Oliver Twist with them standing there with bowls in hand. Not one complaint was received apart from there being none left!

I am a large eater and have found the portions to be more than adequate and certainly far more substantial than any ready meals I have purchased.

The Skinny Beef Lasagne also received rave reviews.

We are all looking forward to trying more of the delicious looking recipes.

The various sections are well laid out, calories are detailed for the recipes per portion and clear ingredient lists make these straight forward and easy to prepare. I have not come across any ingredients that I could not find in my local supermarket and certainly none that were so fancy I hadn't heard of them.

As I do not possess any of the previous Hairy Biker cookbooks, I cannot comment on previous reviews that the recipes are simply a reworking of the originals.

As far as I am concerned, these tasty meals will be very useful in encouraging me to keep on my weight loss / healthy eating plan.
1313 comments662 of 718 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
This is a book for those who enjoy food that they are prepared to spend time preparing and cooking and who also need to watch the calories involved.

The book opens with some sensible advice along these lines by the two authors who have lost weight but who have achieved this without sacrificing their enjoyment in cooking and eating. In effect it boils down to watching the calorie count and exercising reasonable portion control. As a method of reducing weight enjoyably this offers good and common-sense advice and guidance which is likely to be far more sustainable than many 'normal' diet plans.

The book is divided into obvious and easily accessed sections as follows: Breakfast and Brunch; One-Pan dishes; Grills and Roasts; Pies; Stews; vegetables and Salads; Fakeaways (Takeaways!); Pasta and Rice; Puddings and Cakes; Lunch Boxes and Snacks followed by Menus for the First Week and finally, the Index and acknowledgements.

Numerous other reviewers have warmed to this book and there are considerable detailed thoughts about the book, but there is one unifying thread running through the vast majority. That is that the book delivers on all its stated aims and that the resultant meals are uniformly both tasty and enjoyable and are suitable for a wide range of occasions. Such is the scope of the book that it could easily be the only recipe book that many will feel the need to use.

This book is easy to follow and will deliver excellent results if that is done. However it has been written by two excellent cooks who love cooking. These are not quick meals to prepare and nor are they offering any sort of quick fix to weight control.

Those who have neither the time not the inclination to do the necessary preparation in order to achieve these results in this way would be best advised to look elsewhere for inspiration. Those who Do have the time and inclination will find this book unusually satisfying to follow with delicious results to enjoy after the essential preparation. Ingredients such as a wide range of herbs and spices will need to be built up but once bought, the cooking does not require any further expenditure beyond the norm.

This book therefore amounts to a very tasty purchase option and can be confidently recommended with the above provisos as regards time and inclination.
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on 6 August 2012
My copy arrived last Thursday and I think I've cooked every meal we've had since then from this cookbook, it's wonderful, my husband and I have very different diet needs (I need to loose weight, he doesn't) so finding meals that suited both of us was a real challange. The recipes are easy to follow and delicous.Si & Dave have cooked all over the world and their experience really shows through in the flavours of the dishes. So far I've cooked the Ginger Chilli Salmon, the poached eggs and bacon, the chicken korma, the lemon and blueberry fairy cakes and the cheese & leek pasties, I've only had the book 4 days. I can now cook meals which help me loose weight and that my husband will enjoy. Would recommend this book to everyone!
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on 15 December 2012
The recipes are excellent, I have tried many of them as I am on a diet. What you get is real food that doesn't taste low calorie when it actually is. I would certainly recommend this book, although a few schoolboy omissions (see below) do not put this in the same league as the top-notch diet recipe books.

Pros:
-The recipes are really satisfying and full of flavour
-They are at the same time much reduced in calories over the "traditional" alternatives
-The book is written in a very easy and friendly way - I find myself reading most of the snippets and instructions in my head in Dave Myers' voice....

Cons:
-All of the recipes that were featured in their TV series are available free online
-Although the recipes give an overall calorie count, they lack detailed dietary information such as grams of protein / fat / carbs / fibre / salt etc.
-Unlike many other good recipe books, there is no summary of the time required to prepare and cook each recipe. You have to work through the [sometimes rather complicated] instructions to determine how long it will take to cook. A summary along the lines of "10 minutes preparation plus 2 hours marinading, 50 minutes cooking" would have been really nice to have.
-Many of the recipes list calorie count without essential staples such as rice - especially as in quite a few these staples are hardly optional.
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on 1 March 2013
Just downloaded it to my kindle and flicked through the whole book.

It's thoughtfully laid out, the index at the front and back hyperlinks to recipes. There is even an index which lists main ingredients and shows all recipes that have it and hyperlinks to them.

The foreward is clear and you can hear Si and Dave talking to you as you read.

The recipes look lovely and tasty, my favourite is 'Fakeaways' their healthy take on favourite takeaways such as curries and Chinese and even staple family favourites like chilli con carne.

I've got the other Hairy cook books and they are great too, this one is their best. They understand that foodies love taste and hearty meals. They give advice we all know about and have heard before, but when they say itin their no nonsense way, you want to listen. After all if they can live healthier then it gives hope to everyone else looking to make changes to improve themselves.

The baking section on using vegetable oil instead of butter looks good and that will be my first stop recipe.

At the back of the book is a helpful meal planner to help kick start readers for the first week.

Brilliant and a must buy for health seeking foodies.

Thank you Si and Dave for another gem of a book x
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I've been on a weight loss mission for a year now, and have lost four stone in weight - and I've done it in the same way as the Hairy Bikers have, ie by stepping up my activity levels and reducing my calorie intake while maintaining a balanced diet. However, I still have another stone I'd like to lose and I've been looking for some nice tasty meals I can make from scratch and which aren't 'diet food' - I love food, I love cooking and I love cooking for other people too, so I don't want to have to cook one 'diet' meal for me and one 'normal' meal for my boyfriend. Supposedly healthy recipes in magazines are almost always a bland, tedious variation on the 'plain grilled chicken and steamed vegetables drizzled with lemon juice' theme and frankly, I'm not about to eat like Posh Spice every night.

So, this book has been brilliant for me! It's full of really hearty, tasty meals like spaghetti and meatballs, curries, roasts, cooked breakfasts, stews and even a few pies. Most of the recipes are really easy, too - you only need the most basic cooking skills for the vast majority of them and if you think some of the curries etc have a really long ingredients list, it's mostly just spices which you've probably got in the cupboard and the actual cooking isn't at all arduous. You could happily feed a family on them. If there are family members who need more calories than you, you can just serve them extra spuds, rice or pasta with their portions. None of this food is really 'diet' food as I think of it - I could eat meals from this book every day and not once feel like I was denying myself anything nice.

These are really good, practical, fun, tasty recipes with loads of flavour and they're all really well-balanced in terms of nutrition. Plus, the Hairy Bikers are down-to-earth and realistic in their advice, and their enthusiasm really shines through. Excellent stuff.
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on 4 August 2012
Opened this book and gazed in wonder at the pictures, ok they are all specially photographed so the proof of the pudding is in the making and eating. I have just eaten the best tuna dish I have ever tasted, and (wait for it) it looked exactly as it does in the picture. Wow! These guys have never let me down in any of their books and yet again I am more than happy to say well done lads.
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on 13 August 2012
Having recently purchased the book I was relieved to find that it was 1. easy to follow 2. used readily available ingredients (even found harissa in the supermarket) 3. easy to follow instructions 4. easy to cook and 5. tasted delicious.
I have countless cook books confined to the cupboard because they are too complex and I give up the will to live after just reading them. All the recipes offered that I have made are bursting with flavor just as they promise, with no complaints from any of the family, making for a pleasant change. It is true the book is simple and to the point - which as a busy working Mum suits me down to the ground. I would highly recommend this book based on the fact that I have actually used it and am still using it. Can't say fairer than that......................
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