Customer Review

219 of 230 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gordon's best book to date............., 15 Sep 2012
This review is from: Gordon Ramsay's Ultimate Cookery Course (Hardcover)
Gordon Ramsay's Ultimate Cookery Course accompanies the televison series currently being shown on Channel Four each teatime, yes the program is a rip-off of the wonderful Jamie's 30-Minute Meals, but that doesn't really matter in my opinion.

At the time of writing this review the show has only been on for one week (five epsiodes) but it has already grabbed my attention and I fully intend to see it through to the end!

I've actually had the book about a fortnight now, so had already started using it before the show first televised.

It's a lovely big book, 320 pages to be exact, and it is full of beautifully photographed food and the odd shot of Gordon, good if that sort of thing rocks your gravy boat!

The book starts with an introduction to the basics of a kitchen and has some useful information on how to get the best out of Knifes, Pans, a Blowtorch, Digital Scales, Food Processors, Free-Standing or Stick Blenders, Ice Cream Makers, Mandolines, Microplane Zesters, a Pestle and Mortar, a Potato Ricer, Probe Thermometers, Sieves, Vegetable Peelers and Whisks; there is even a well written descripton of how best to cut an onion.

We then move on to the recipes, 123 to be exact, and they are split into themed chapters:

1. Classics with a twist - 13 recipes

2. Fish - 12 recipes

3. Meat - 12 recipes

4. Spices - 14 recipes

5. Good Food for Less - 15 recipes

6. Cooking in Advance - 12 recipes

7. Cooking for Crowds - 13 recipes

8. Baking - 13 recipes

9. Basic Skills - 9 recipes

The instructions are clear, concise and easy to follow; most have a beautifully photographed example of the final result you're aiming for, but unfortunately not all recipes have this and its a disappointment, albeit a relatively minor one.

We have already been pretty busy making some of the dishes, so far we've had the beautiful Stuffed Roast Chicken (with chirizo and cannellini beans), the amazing Slow-cooked fiery lamb (melt in the mouth, but REALLY hot), and my personal favourites, the Chilli beef lettuce wraps (these are one of the best things I have eaten for ages!).

This weekend we're trying the Fish Pie, and if all goes well my fiance will be baking the Lemon polenta cake at some point later on next week!

This book is primarily aimed at the day to day cook in my opinion, its style and content are realistic and achievable, and most of the recipes should cause no problems for anyone with average skills in the kitchen.

At the same time though I would say that this book would be a good start for a beginner, and also has enough inside to offer inspiration to the more experienced cook.

Overall a really good book, the best I've seen from Gordon Ramsey to date in fact, it has loads of really appealing recipes that will provide something new for your table but won't necessarily break the bank in the process!
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Showing 1-8 of 8 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 16 Sep 2012 12:21:21 BDT
Try the sausage bolognese its fab!!!

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Sep 2012 16:09:50 BDT
IOWBOY says:
Thanks Gal, I will!

If you are interested, there is a similar dish in 'Jamies 30 Minute Meals' that is gorgeous!

Its made with sausages, spring onions, celery, carrot, chilli, garlic, fennel, balsamic, chopped toms and pasta.

Mr Oliver created it for his wife when she was pregnant, hence the name 'Jool's Pasta', it is lovely and barely a week goes by without it being a feature on the menu in our house!Jamie's 30-Minute Meals: A Revolutionary Approach to Cooking Good Food Fast

In reply to an earlier post on 17 Sep 2012 21:06:40 BDT
I would just like to endorse IWOBOY's recommendation of 'Jool's Pasta'

It is a lovely dish and one that I go back to time and again

In reply to an earlier post on 17 Sep 2012 23:00:13 BDT
Last edited by the author on 17 Sep 2012 23:01:11 BDT
IOWBOY says:
Hello there Mrs E Preval!

Thanks for the endorsement!

I usually make it in bulk, minus the pasta; I simply double the ingedients ie 2lb sausages (x12).

I then divide it down, usually into about twelve portions, and freeze it.

I make the portions for two, and it only amounts to a good sized ladle, but when mixed with enough cooked pasta for two (and some of the starchy water) it is perfect!

I love it because it is quite healthy (amounting to only a sausage each), and even a little veg!

It freezes perfectly, and works out as a very economical meal.

Posted on 19 Sep 2012 23:43:24 BDT
IMHO the lack of a photo of the final product is a MAJOR flaw. The amount of cookery books I have where I have no idea what I'm supposed to be aiming for ... Darina Allen's Complete Cookery Course is the worst culprit of this.

In reply to an earlier post on 20 Sep 2012 10:49:43 BDT
IOWBOY says:
Hello Hambletta-Maud, Thanks for your post!

I agree with you that it is a flaw, even though I am pretty competent in the kitchen I too like seeing a picture of what I'm aiming for!

However, there are photos for most things in the book, and I still think that the books positives outweigh (by some way) its negatives! :)

In reply to an earlier post on 23 May 2013 10:55:26 BDT
Busy Mummy says:
Hello everyone!

Well I have just taken delivery of this Mr Ramsay gem, and both Mr Oliver 15 & 30 min meals....

I am positively drooling, and I love that most of it seems so easy to make and not all "arty farty" .... not that there's anything wrong with fancy food when you have the time, but for me, as a very busy mummy to my 4 darlings, I wanted something to help me create healthy and tasty, but fairly non time consuming meals we can all sit down to and spend quality time together as a family :)

My munchkins aren't fussy eaters, and my hubby would eat whatever I decide to create (bless him!).....

Just wanted to ask, what dish did you prefer (if one was your fav?).... the Jamie's Jools pasta or Gordon's quick sausage meat bolognese??? Jamie's seems a more jucier/saucier dish??... was Gordon's recipie not a bit dry??

Any recommendations you can throw my way would be gratefully appreciated...

Going to go shopping in a bit to stock up, in anticipation of some yummy teas for the next few evenings!! :)

Happy cooking everyone! x

In reply to an earlier post on 27 May 2014 20:38:11 BDT
R. W. Black says:
I can only agree. I've started to watch this (excellent) series using Channel 4's 4OD service and it is that which has led me here. Like you, I need "something to aim at" in cookery books and those who fail to provide such a simple thing do not deserve my hard-earned, regardless of the quality of all else provided. It is such a rookie mistake one would assume, and yet one repeated over and again and especially by the more lauded of chefs; although to be fair it is almost certainly art school educated layout "experts" at the publisher making such schoolboy errors. Raymond Blanc's books are one of the notable and welcome exceptions in this regard and I have been returning to his canon more frequently as time goes by. Thanks for making this important point.
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