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29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
on 24 March 2010
A wide range of mouth watering dishes - some of the very best from the series. Only one little gripe - it would have been useful to have a photograph for every delight. But perhaps half the fun is in creating your own unique designs! Thoroughly recommended
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50 of 51 people found the following review helpful
on 22 March 2010
As a fan of the MasterChef series, I was pleasantly surprised to find this book. Wonderful recipes with valuable MasterTips (little sidebars explaining some basic technique or product). The recipe descriptions are very clear to me. Too bad not every recipe is accompanied by a picture, on the other hand, this way there is more room for more recipes. If you're a MasterChef fan, you'll love this book - it's a trip down memorylane. And if you're not, you will still love the recipes!
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54 of 57 people found the following review helpful
on 4 June 2010
The smiling faces of John and Gregg adorn the durable hardboard cover which opens to 400 high quality shiny pages, spilt over main chapters:-

* Starters
* Vegetables & Fish
* Poultry
* Meat
* Game
* Desserts

sandwiched between individual forewords from the 4 judges:-

* John Torode
* Gregg Wallace
* Michael Roux Jr.
* Monica Galetti

and a 14-page index.

The last page lists the contributing chefs and the 'inspired by' recipes are attributed accordingly, a few to celebrities, based on the original dishes and written by Amy Carter.

Each chapter has a simple two page opening, a brightly coloured page on the left and the title with a simple snapshot photo of one of the recipes, then straight into the first recipe without further ado.

Each recipe is well laid out with the colourful title in capitals at the very top of the page then the accreditation, followed by the prep. & cooking times; the number of servings; the list(s) of ingredients and a clear numbered method.
Occasionally a recipe runs over more than one page.

For the majority of recipes, there is supplementary information on a range of applicable subjects, in the form of a 'MASTER TIP', e.g.:-

* Blanching Vegetables
* Truffles and Lardo
* Caramelizing Fruit
* Making Beurre Blanc
* Making the Ravioli
* Boning a Pork Loin
* Red Thai Curry Paste
* Chipotle Chillies

some of which also carry useful step-by-step photography, e.g.:-

* Making Fresh Chicken Stock
* Making Risotto
* Extracting the Meat from a Cooked Lobster
* Making Custard
* Preparing Kidneys
* Using a Pasta Machine
* Skinning Dover Sole
* Preparing a Flat Fish
* Cleaning Mussels

There is also a scattering of enthusiastic judge comments, such as:-

'The vinaigrette gives sharpness and sweetness to the wonderful deep richness of the venison. The peppery addition of watercress is inspirational.'
Gregg Wallace on 'Carpaccio of Venison with Watercress Salad and a Raspberry Vinaigrette'.

All of this almost surreptitiously adds up to confidence building for those who need it to attempt to replicate the recipes and embellishments for those more experienced.

A small taste of the other recipes contained within:-

* Dorset Apple Soup with Walnut Scones
* Gazpacho with Mediterranean Scones
* Indonesian Noodle Soup
* Baked Asparagus wrapped in Parma Ham
* Wild Mushroom Bruschetta
* Mushroom, Leek and Ale Pie
* Cauliflower and Broccoli Flan
* Steamed Sea Bass with Spiced Broth
* Roast Turbot with Lobster and Lobster Cream Sauce
* Seafood Tagine with Flat Bread
* Baked Ricotta Cake with Roasted Cardamom Vegetables
* Braised Wild Hare with Pearl Barley Risotto
* Chicken Sukka with Sweet Rice
* Chicken Breast filled with Liver served with Madeira Cream Sauce
* Duck with Cherry Sauce and Parsnip Purée
* Rack of Lamb with a Cabbage Parcel, Shallot Purée and a Red Wine Jus
* Fillet Steak with Beetroot Rosti and Red Wine Jus
* Steak and Kidney Pie with Mash and Broccoli
* Thai Beef Massaman Curry with Jasmine Rice
* Pork Tenderloin on a Bed of Fennel
* Roast Partridge with Game Jus
* Cranachan
* Summer Pudding Kir Royale
* Strawberry Mousse with Shortbread
* Pears Belle Hélène
* Tiramisu
* Ras Malai
* Baked Ginger Pear Crumble
* Tangerine Soufflé
* Chocolate Cappuccino Cups
* St Emilion au Chocolat
* Baked Lime Cheesecake with Rum Cream

Tried and tasted, to date:-

'Ricotta and Lemon Ravioli' (with fresh pasta from the step-by-step recipe given)
'Fillet of Beef in a Red Wine Jus with Colcannon, Carrots & Broccoli'
'Sticky Toffee Pudding':-

The latter recipe from Wendi Peters, actress & 2009 finalist - commented by John Torode:-

'This is one seriously sexy pudding! The butterscotch sauce is sweet and rich and I love the taste of those dates! I've been cooking for 25 years and you taught me how to do a sticky toffee pudding properly. I thank you for that.'
Credit where credit is due, straight from an expert!
I haven't been cooking quite as long but that aforementioned sauce tops an exceedingly good pud, to coin a phrase!

Overall, this is a very well-produced chunky tome and my favourite 'kind of cookbook''.
Although on a casual flick through it seems well-balanced, I do feel that it is a little light on pictures of the finished dishes, which could well prove negative for those of us who like to see what we are aiming for on the plate.
For example, in the starter section there is a run of 6 recipes, albeit soups, without a picture at all.
Having said that, the dishes which are pictured are simply mouth-watering and seriously encouraging, so maximum credit to recipe photographer - William Reavell.

This afternoon, The MasterChef Cookbook is on my kitchen countertop, open and ready to try:-

'Black and Redcurrant Fool with Ginger Biscuits', from pages 290/291,

pictured opposite the content's page in the 'look inside' facility, above.

Just the tonic for a seriously hot Friday in the UK, for a change!
The weekend starts here!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 16 September 2010
I picked up this book, I imagine like everyone else, attracted by the idea of creating Masterchef style delights at home.

It's a big book and so good value, with loads and loads of recipes. Recipes range from those that look relatively easy to achieve to the "Pave of salmon, vegetable terrine, consomme of san marizano an quail's egg jelly". Some of the ingredient lists do look a bit intimidating, but that's pretty much what I expected from a Masterchef book.

Not allo recipes have photos, but the ones that do look amazing. While there's no celebrity chef-stype introduction to recipes, it's a great book to leaf through.

Included are some unusual recipes, like for quails, tial and guinea foul - which is great if you've seen such things at supermarkets or game dealers but been put off by the lack of a recipe at home.

There are a couple of criticisms... firstly, much of the appeal of the tv show hinges on how the completed dishes look. I'd therefore expected more help on how to present food; whenever I have a shot at doing all artful blobs of sauce on the plate, it just looks rubbish. Maybe it's just me, but I think a section on the tools and techniques for making food look good would have been a great addition to the book.

Also, I suspect most of us have more opportunity to cook Mastercheffy sort of food for two, rather than four. All the recipes are for four, it might have been more useful to provide more recipes for two, as sometimes if there's odd numbers of eggs or whatever, it's easier to double up than half ingredients.

The book does focus quite a lot on particular types of ingredients - goats' cheese, duck and "cannons of lamb" feature very heavily. Chicken always seems to be stuffed and there's more ravioli than I suspect anyone will ever make. In a way this is a good thing as there's loads of recipes that are really trendy at the moment, however, it also means the book will date fairly quickly.

Masterchef isn't a book for beginners - rather obviously! However, if you're an experienced cook that wants to impress your nearest and dearest, then this is well worth the money.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on 12 April 2010
A long term fan of this show and desperate for more inspiration I bought this book without any hesitation.
The recipies are clear and not overly complicated. Pictures are bright and appealing.
Should keep me going for a bit
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 22 April 2010
The MasterChef juggernaut is a rolling! The book has lots of easily achievable recipes for the keen home cook and whilst it is clear about explaining the bleeding obvious (like how to crush biscuits for a cheesecake), it lacks some detail on some technical cooking methods. It does however give you new ways of using family favourites that will delight family and friends. Def worth buying!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 12 May 2010
Not just a collection of very good recipes , but with lots of practical tips and infomation as well, all of which is easy to find thanks to an excellent index .I have a large collection of cookbooks and this is one of the best ,An invaluable aid to anyone interested in cooking .
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 21 February 2013
Excellent ! It was better than I expected , I have only tried two recipes so far but have given them 10/10
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on 28 August 2010
A good cook book to read.However some of the recipes seem to be quite difficult to do .Where I live it would be impossible to get some of the ingredients mentioned. Nonetheless I enjoy reading the recipes and who was responsible for them.Greg and John are tops .So if your a fan Buy It.
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on 11 January 2013
A good clear book with featured recipes from the Masterchef tv series. My only criticism is that it would have been so much better if each recipe had a photo. As presentation is key in this class of cuisine - it is essential to see a picture of the finished plate of food.
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