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Customer reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
The Prawn Cocktail Years
Format: Hardcover|Change
Price:£19.49+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime

on 20 January 2014
In the days before the world was infested with "foodies" - what a thoroughly obnoxious word that is - entirely appropriate - food didn't go in and out of fashion. What was good was made over and over again, and served in varying quality from back street cafes to expensive hotels. And that was the problem. People remembered the hundreds of thoroughly bad Prawn Cocktails or Black Forest Gateaux at the expense of the few really excellent ones. In this book, the winning team of Hopkinson and Bareham revive the glories of '50s, '60s, and '70s British cuisine. With loving care they resurrect well over 120 of Britain's favourite post-war dishes. Each dish is deconstructed, researched, and reassembled to give the authors' "perfect" version of Chicken Chasseur, Cauliflower Cheese, Welsh Rabbit, Taramasalata, Cheesecake, Chilli con Carne, Profiteroles ..... This can give surprising results - Chilli con Carne with chopped lemon cooked into it - surprisingly good, although I did vary most of the other ingredients depending on what I had. But that's half the fun of cooking 'standards' - there is no right way. Along the way, you will find a deal of informative chat about the dishes and slightly too many very good pictures - but that's just my bias. In fact, like most of Hopkinson's books, this is ok just to read - forget the cooking for a while.

Be warned, as well as some great dishes, you will find things you hate in here. But try them just the same. My wife has a serious dislike of Quiche Lorraine, but agreed to try the version in this book. She ate it all and enjoyed it, but we won't be having it again for a while - it's very calorie-heavy! Give this book a try, it's great fun and if you're too young to remember the dishes in it, you're in for a real treat - good food is not an invention of the current crop of TV chefs - it's always been there.
5 people found this helpful
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on 5 July 2016
I was excited to get this after reading excerpts, but the two recipes I tried didn't work (rum baba being one). Difference between other recipes showed perhaps something was missed? Not sure, but now I feel I can't trust it :(
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on 22 January 2013
Actually having written the title of this review - I wish many more 'professional' chefs had a copy of this book.
This really is the best book for staple recipes, which anyone who wants to produce top notch food needs to own. Rarely do I get a recipe book (& believe me I get a lot) where I have found each & every recipe to be excellent. Thoroughly recommended.
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on 29 April 2016
I have wanted this book for sometime and am delighted to have it. All the recipes I remember as a young cook are there and with the current trend for retro dishes it is really good to have them in my hand again
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on 29 January 2014
This book is a total joy - if you secretly love prawn cocktail, grew up understanding that a lasagne was where it was at - and have been hanging out for a really good - black forest gateau! Then buy this and enjoy. As it says, these recipies can't have been so unbiquitous for no good reason - they are fantastic and delicious - perfectly balanced and very enjoyable
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on 16 June 2017
Great book, funny and interesting. Recipes well thought out and work
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on 3 January 2018
A bit complex.
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on 29 September 2017
Can't go wrong with this chef. Book delivered quickly
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on 28 August 2014
A nice book, but in somewhat tatty condition. Many felt stuck together, but not seriously.
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on 12 July 2013
I'm a great fan of Hopkinson, I have most of his books, this is another great addition to my collection. Recipes turn out well.
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