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40 of 44 people found the following review helpful
on 20 November 2008
I bought this book to get me through winter - i wanted to try some homely, traditional recipes from Clarissa after being impressed by her book Sunday Roast. I was not disappointed. I've not tried all the recipes yet, but the bread and butter pudding, fish stew and cornish pasties are all fantastic, as well as being really simple and fairly quick to prepare.

Thanks Clarissa!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 30 June 2013
Every now and again I am lucky enough to catch an episode or two of the fascinating British cookery show, Two Fat Ladies. In each episode Clarissa Dickson Wright and Jennifer Paterson set off for a day of cooking on a vintage motorcycle with side car. Their travels take them far afield, to farm and garden, shore and pond, and usually end with the two of them cooking a meal in the kitchen of some famous old home, often on an Aga.

As many of you know, I am a life-long collector & reader of cookbooks. (Sometimes I even cook from them!) Over the years I've acquired a few books from the far flung corners of the British Empire, but the last several years I've found myself actively collecting books from the "greats" of UK and Australian cooking - Darina and Mrytle Allen, Margaret Fulton, Elizabeth David and even a Nigella & Jaime Oliver or two. I've recently acquired Clarissa's Comfort Food from a UK-based seller, something I prefer as I am then guaranteed to get the book as it was published in the UK rather than some cobbled together "translation" that invariably is riddled with error. I am delighted!

As those who have read Clarissa's two autobiographies, Spilling the Beans and Rifling Through My Drawers know, Clarissa spins quite a yarn. Clarissa's Comfort Food is certainly no exception. Packed full of tales and anecdotes, Clarissa's Comfort Food is a delight to read, though I must note that full enjoyment of these tales did require me to dig out my reading glasses due to the pastel print on a darker background. The book contains 94 (assuming I counted correctly) recipes that range from breakfast porridge through dessert, many accompanied by mouth-watering full page color photos of the finished dish.

None of these are what you would call fancy fare. Many of them are Clarissa's uniquely British takes on dishes you will find quite familiar or classical good home cooking from the four corners of the United Kingdom. Many are historic and a few downright inventive. One I cannot wait to try is Jennifer Paterson's take on the British classic Summer Pudding, made with vine ripened summer tomatoes and basil fresh from the garden. (I'm counting the days until tomato season arrives here in Vermont!) Most of them are straightforward, even easy, and many rather quick to produce. There is nothing whatever complicated here. It is, after all, comfort food, not putting on the dog food.

I did find one or two recipes that will remain intellectual curiosities. One of them calls for a "zampone", something I had to look up. (It is a stuffed pig's trotter from Modena. There is also a sausage made from the same stuffing, Cotechino, that might be more doable.) Guinea fowl isn't exactly thick on the ground at my local market either, though I *think* I might be able to scrounge one up at one of the local farms. Clarissa has a life-long love of hunting and fishing, so you'll find a wealth of recipes for pheasant, rabbit, fish and venison. I particularly liked the baking and desserts section. Among the treasures is a Chocolate Bakewell Tart, something I've not come across before.

Grandma's $0.02 - Two Yummy Thumbs Up!
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19 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on 2 May 2009
As a cookbook junkie with around 150 of the things sitting about the house, I am pleased to say this book is one of the most useful I own. The food is simple to prepare and every dish I have made from the book has been well received by my husband and 3 fussy teenagers.

I love the way Clarissa has simplified many classic recipes. Highly recommended.
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17 of 21 people found the following review helpful
on 28 August 2009
I absolutely love this cook book. Everything is so simple and that's what good food should be. The instructions are so clear and it shows that you can make a good meal from very simple ingredients. I especially love her oriental seafood soup, salads and starters selection. I was hoping for a bit more recipe in deserts session but that's just me! I've got a sweet tooth. The other thing I like about this book is the design and presentation. It's absolutely top-notch. Why don't many writers adopt the similar styles, I wonder? It would have been more appealing if all the recipe has got a picture inside the book. But the photos inside the book here are also wonderful. I recently bought so many cookery books and most of them end up on my coffee table rather than taking it into the kitchen and start cooking using the recipe from the books. It's because many celebrity chefs these days write intricate recipe which are more suitable for 3 or 4 stars restaurants rather than cooking at home. People DON'T have time to cook this kind of complicated stuff these days. BUT this book by Clarissa makes you want to get into the kitchen and start from basis of cooking. That's a sign of good cookery book. It makes you want to do it because it makes it sound so easy and effortless and above all, the recipe are healthy, wholesome and homely cooking. Nothing can beat that!
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 19 March 2010
I often used to think that comfort food was boring, but not any more. The book is well laid out and divided into the following chapters:

Breakfast
Soups
Starters
Salads
Noodles, Past & Rice
Fish
Meat
Poultry and Game
Vegetables
Puddings and Baking

Whilst it contains a number of traditional comfort recipes such as Lancashire Hotpot and Fish Pie, there are also some more unusual ones like Onion, Aniseed & Tomato Soup, Cretan Rabbit Pie and Fuzdah's Eggs.

My only negative comment is that not every recipe is illustrated. Personally, I do not find this a problem (hence the full 5 stars), but having read many reviews on other books of the same genre, this can be a disappointment to those who like to see 'what a recipe should look like'.
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on 19 April 2014
Not always my idea of comfort food to be honest, which is to say I didn't think the actual recipes looked terribly easy for someone of very limited culinary talents, i.e. me. And needless there was little of the great and dearly departed lady herself. Nevertheless it joins my small assembly of cook books and at some point I'm sure I'll use one of Clarissa's recipes.

Yorkshire Pete
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on 30 March 2013
Clarissa writes in such an engaging way, with an obvious delight in everything she cooks. This book is attractively illustrated, and is ideal for those wishing to cook and bake easy, wholesome, nourishing dishes.
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on 3 May 2013
I come back to this book often for recipes. Recipes are packed with flavour - really delicious food. I LOVE the beef stew - who would have thought to put black treacle in, but it really lifts the flavour.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 8 July 2012
Bought this book from Clarissa herself, direct at a local farm that she was visiting. She signed it for me which is wonderful. (P.S. Also, God bless Jennifer). Believe me the Chocolate Bakewell comes highly recommoned - not just from me, but, from Clarissa herself - try it, it is gorgeous. This is a lovely book to read by a log fire on an autumn afternoon - perhaps thinking about what you will cook at the weekend. Comfort food at it's best, even the book provides comfort.
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on 10 May 2014
Fantastic way to buy cookbooks at a very good price. Super book , lovely recipes and excellent condition . Will buy like this again.
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