Top positive review
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An invaluable guide to keep alongside your recipe collection
on 14 November 2006
This is a super book - emphatically not a recipe book (though it was a pleasant surprise to find a few example recipes given), but both a reference tool and a readable guide for anyone who wants to eat more seasonally.
I'm sorry that an earlier reader was disappointed because this wasn't the kind of book he expected, but it's perhaps a little harsh to give this valuable and fascinating book only one star on that basis. I'm giving it five stars because it does exactly what the title promises. Waddington explains what foods are coming in and out of season each month and how to use each of them, whether apples, lobsters, cobnuts, lamb, dandelions or nettles. He also explains why we have seasons, how the seasons work in Britain, how they influence what we eat and why certain foods are in season at certain times.
Waddington's writing is also pleasant to read, as it's straightforward and informative but still thoughtful and entertaining. "Cardoon! Not a Shakespearean insult, but a close relative of the globe artichoke", begins one section, and I loved his affectionate description of the parsnip's "strange, sweet flavour [which] wavers unsteadily between delightful and disturbing, depending on how it is prepared". He also intersperses many historical details, advice on how to gather wild produce, and helpful charts.
While there are many seasonal recipe books available, this is something quite different - a thorough, informative guide to eating seasonally.