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4.3 out of 5 stars14
4.3 out of 5 stars
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I recently bought a used copy of '200 Easy Suppers' and gave it to some young friends who were looking for ways to prepare some easy meals rather than always eating takeaways. In many ways, this is rather similar except that speed of preparation rather than simplicity and ease of preparation is the central point. The authors are not the same but, within the series which is now almost 20 titles, several authors' names appear 2 or 3 times and on very different titles.

I had made the point in another review that most home cooks have a repertoire of 10-12 meals that they can make without referral to a printed recipe but many will have rather fewer. We are all quite busy and may not have an hour or two to devote to preparing and cooking a meal once we get home from work or university. We could probably find twenty minutes and the results will probably be more nutritious and certainly far less expensive than any takeaway. There is nothing here that demands exceptional skill or complex or unduly expensive equipment. A few basic tools such as a kitchen knife, a serving spoon or spatula and a couple of pans and a cooker is all you really need apart from the necessary ingredients. Some things, dried herbs or pepper for example, will last for months and can be easily stored in a dry cupboard. Others, such as the meat or fish can be bought, some used and the rest frozen once resealed for use on another occasion; fruit and veg can usually be bought in small quantities, especially when not pre-packed, so storage need not be an issue.

The nature of the series is that all the books share a common size and format. There are usually 110-115 main recipes and most will have a variation in that certain ingredients may be exchanged for others, an obvious example not knowingly in the book would be Shepherds' Pie and Cottage Pie - you could turn one into the other by replacing minced lamb with minced beef. Replace the meat with fish and you are well on the way to Fishermens' Pie.

Every recipe has an accompanying photo illustration and an introductory section usually provides explanations for a few terms used within that book. A good index follows.

Despite the obvious subject differences of the respective titles and the many authors involved, the books are very consistent in their presentation. If you own one title, another would be a good companion. If you own 'Easy Suppers' do you need this too? Probably, yes, as there is little that is common in their content. As may be expected, there is not too much here for vegans or vegetarians, but that is another common feature of the series.

The books are very good value and have a very good presentational quality. Small, but not pocket-sized, they will be quite at home on a kitchen shelf where they will be easily available when needed. The sole criticism is that the books do not lay flat or remain open during use and they will need to be weighted down.

An excellent choice for the busy cook or anyone wishing to add a few simple meals to their repertoire.
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on 16 March 2013
I have a couple of these books. I find them really easy and useful to use. So far all my meals cooked using them have come out alright.This book is no exception.I would recommend for anyone to use.There is enough inspiration for anybody.Great value.
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on 13 March 2013
I love these books, and I have nearly all of them now. They are easy to follow recipes. and always turn out good. Obviously i havent made everything in these books, but the few recipes i have tried have always turned out well
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on 24 February 2013
The recipes in this book are generally good with quite a few classics thrown in (essential for newbies). I have made several and they've been pleasing. Time-wise I think the book is fair in estimating around 20 minutes preparation time but it could take you longer if you are not familiar with some of the preparation methods described or of which you are assumed to have knowledge.

I like the book's small size and handiness. It's easy to store in a small cupboard over the hob, for example.
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on 18 February 2016
Only done one meal and one dessert so far. Am a little miffed where the 20 minutes comes from. Maybe if someone measured the ingredients out into little bowls for you, then you could make in that time. The tiramisu has to be chilled overnight!! Would also suggest you make the coffee with hot water and chill for this dessert, otherwise the sponges don't go soft enough and it becomes very bitter when you get a few grains of coffee. Otherwise if you like tiramisu then this is yum.
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on 20 February 2016
I haven't got around to using it much yet, but I think it will be good. It was recommended by a friend.
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on 12 May 2014
full of easy nice dishes and easy to follow instruction a must for any cook who entertains a lot yes
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on 9 March 2016
An excellent value mini sized cookbook. A good variety of recipes that are easy and quick to make.
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on 27 November 2012
Like I said, try it out with all your friends or new visitors and feel like you've made the moment.
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on 7 January 2015
A good little book with lots (200) of simple and popular recipes
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