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4.8 out of 5 stars
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4.8 out of 5 stars
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on 23 January 2001
Bought this book just after Christmas (aftre many hints to family and friends that I would like it and no one took me up on the NOT so subtle hints!!).
Its a beautifuly written piece of work. When reading it you soon get a feel for Gary's love of british food, which then encourages you to have a go!!
So far Bread and Buuter pudding, Rice Pudding and the amazing Chicken Sanwich have been tasted and tested... all were delicious! Today is the turn of homemade crumpets and at the weekend its time for Rack On Black!!
Totally reccommended!
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on 15 November 2005
I love this book and you will too. Gary Rhodes is the king of classic food and if there's one cookery book that will give you all those british classics together then this is it. His instructions are easy to follow and the ingredients are all available in your local supermarket so that's two excuses you can't use for avoiding cooking some of these brilliant dishes. The illustrations are wonderful and the desciption of the recipes origin is a lovely touch.
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on 6 December 2002
I am an American who owns over 300 cookbooks, and I consider myself a gourmet cook. On a recent trip to Britain, I scoured bookstores and chose this book over all the others. I'm glad I did. I have to say, this is absolutely the BEST cookbook I have come across in the past 20 years.
This book is not as comprehensive as The Joy of Cooking, which tries to tell you how to cook absolutely everything under the sun. But this book IS inclusive of everything that's important in classic British Cooking (and in traditional American cooking, as well)-soups, sauces, cheese and eggs, vegetables, fish, meat, poultry, picnics, puddings, cakes and baking, and preserves and pickles. In addition, it has chapters on The Great British Breakfast, Savories and Snacks, Sunday Lunch Roasts, A Festive Christmas, and Afternoon and High Tea.
As an American, I learned SO much from this book. I learned about the ORIGIN of bacon and eggs for breakfasts, about the histories of many different vegetables (quite different information than is included in The Joy of Cooking), HOW and WHY British cuisine got a reputation for being bland (it wasn't always so), and many things about the history of eating which have just been plainly lost to us in America. For example, I did not know before that the origin of certain foods sometimes being served on a piece of toast was from the "trenchers" used in medieval times--"trenchers" being big slabs of bread which were laid directly on the table, and food put on top. The reason for the use of trenchers was that plates were too expensive for ordinary people to use. Not only are so many interesting discussions about the origins of different foods and customs included in this book, but ALL the recipies are interesting and FANTASTIC!
British readers will enjoy the depth and style of this book, while American readers will really learn a lot about the origin of our own traditional cuisine. I will treasure this book for many years. I am buying four more copies to give as gifts this Christmas. I bought the paperback edition. This book is so wonderful and will be used for so many years, that I highly recommend to other readers to spend the extra money and get a hardcover edition, if it is available.
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on 5 January 2000
I am an avid cook and watched all the TV series which accompanies the book. I thought the price was great - I've just ordered a second copy for my Mum for her birthday! An excellent book- classic recipes without being too old fashioned or staid, together with loads of great ideas for interesting food without the ingredients being too weird or difficult to buy. Well photographed, with lots of accompanying tips and hints with the recipes.
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on 24 February 2004
Fantastic Book full of wonderful recipes (have been trying them out on the unsuspecting family with very favourable results). Nice touch with the addtional information on each recipe, its origin and alternatives that will work just as well. Better buy two copies as one is certain to get well used and like mine covered in flour etc.
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on 22 November 2000
When I saw the photos in the book I thought they looked a bit daunting - could I produce something so professional?
Don't be put off. The recipes are easy to follow and, whilst some are time-consuming, the end product is a delight - both to taste and look at.
The background information included ahead of particular topics makes the book a good read as well as a source of information.
Top tips from the book are the Steak and 'Kidney' pie (tastes wonderful and gives everyone a surpise as it comes in two distinct parts: steak with its own kidney pie) and White Lamb Stew. Such innovation is a mark of this book.
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on 14 January 2002
Gary Rhodes has truly turned out a cornucopia of mouth-watering treats and delights in the wonderful book! It sets a new trend, by encouraging, and updating some of the great classics of Britian.
The book was written for people who are comfortable in the kitchen, and some of the recipes could be a bit daunting for a first time cook. Be prepared to commit a healthy amount of your time to the recipes, as they are somewhat more time consuming than you would find in other recipes. But that is the whole point: by using a bit more time, and high quality ingredients, Gary Rhodes can turn your home-cooked meal into a first-class affair.
One criticism is that some of the ingredients used are a bit expensive. His Fish pie uses some cuts of fish that were qute extravagant (I had to preorder them from my fishmonger, as they are not normally stocked). A guide to ordering some of the less available ingredients would have been helpful. Also, some of the cuts of lamb and beef are also a bit on the dear side. But again, this goes back to better quality for a better meal!
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on 23 July 2003
I have been collecting cookery books, of all types of food, for over twenty years. This ranks as one of the best. I bought it about 2 weeks ago and already have had friends fighting over who gets the last piece of baked egg custard !!! The book is well presented; beautiful photos, but not too many; hepful instructions and tips. A "must have" for any cook.
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I'm working as a Chef for many years now and this book became my Bible in the kitchen. Our customers love to eat authentic British food and in this book you can find all the recipes what you need. the only criticism that can be made of them is that they include an unnecessary amount of sugar, sometimes in recipes that don't really need any at all. That can be easily corrected for though and this remains the best book of its type.
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on 23 August 2005
very easy to cook, very, very delicious and as i said true british classic. the ingredients are mostly available in any supermarket so no excuse not to cook from this book.
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