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Customer reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
67
4.5 out of 5 stars
Format: Hardcover|Change
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on 29 April 2012
Another exceptional book from Claudia Roden . If you are not interested in food but simply want a recipe book to follow slavishly then perhaps it is not for you . It is ,however, scholarly erudite and fascinating and faithful to the real cooking of Spain . Highly recommended .
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on 8 March 2016
I have several books by Claudia Roden so I knew that I'd enjoy this book. For me, the mix of historical information and typical family recipes is perfect. In the short time that I've owned this book I've tried several recipes - all delicious and ones that will no doubt become family favourites.
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on 30 August 2017
This is a gorgeous classic. Arrived before scheduled in very good condition
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on 13 September 2017
Real Spanish recipes well explained and reasonably easy to follow.
I bought it as a present for a friend and she loved it.
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on 28 March 2012
Received this book 2 weeks ago, having pre-ordered it and am absolutely loving it! A really good and intelligent work on Spanish cooking, that importantly is written in a way accessible to us in the UK. For me, one of the biggest pluses is that so many of these dishes are possible to knock up for supper after returning from work - yes, there are some that need longer, but it is very evident that Claudia has stuck to her aim of producing recipes that give flavour and satisfaction worthy of the time put into them. Have cooked 4 from the book so far and all have turned out brilliantly.

I note the comments from the less enthusiastic reviewer, although I have to say that I found this a perfect balance between cookery book and scholarly work. There are 122 pages of history and analysis of ingredients before the recipes even begin - to be honest I think that if you want more than that, you should be buying an academic text and not a recipe book! Although some of the information may be already known to many, it's not put across in an overly simplistic way and you can't just skip out mentioning oil and bread, just because it's a well known part of Spanish cookery.

I will confess that the book maybe does not have pages of immediately stand-out 'wow' recipes that make you want to drop everything and cook them. But I think that is partly because so much of Spanish cookery is quite simple, everyday fare. However, if you take the time to read the book and try out recipes, then you really do get the 'wow' - both on a quick weekday supper and a weekend dinner party. I feel certain this book will become one of the most well-thumbed and oil-stained in my kitchen!
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on 19 July 2017
OK to answer the negative reviews this is more than a cookbook- it is a book about the food of Spain, how culture history religion and prosperity as well as regional produce have directed cooking across Spain. Some people are interested in the food as well as how to make it and this book is great for them.
We have become used to celebrity chefs sticking a recipe and picture per double paged spread, which is fine but I have a deeper interest in food and how dishes came to be, how they vary and why they are made as they are, this is informative with lovely recipes as you would expect from Claudia Roden.
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on 5 October 2012
No wonder Claudia Roden is my favourite food writer - received this yesterday and haven't stopped reading it since. The first hundred pages or so offer a fascinating cultural history of Spain which puts the last two millennium into perspective, and explains the culinary heritage of Romans, Moors, Jews and Christians, as well as giving a guide to the food of the 17 autonomous regions of the country. As always with this writer the recipes are so easy to follow,and she gives the reader great confidence in making their own adaptations. I love this book, and thank you Amazon for offering it at such a good price.
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on 8 August 2016
Best recipes, many I haven't come across before. I live and work in Spain 5 months of the year and love the food, now I can cook authentic dishes at home; probably the best cook book I have along with Cooking Like Mummyji by Vicky Bhogal. As always with amazon, couldn't fault the service, packaged well so it wasn't damaged and the price was fantastic for such a huge hardback book.
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on 8 August 2017
Usually my cooks books enter the house, land on a shelf and stay there. Not so with this absolute gem. The recipes are straightforward, easy to follow and absolutely scrumptious. The additional details, descriptions and history of food sections are wonderful to read during down time when cooking and are really informative. Although I consider my friends and family an easy crowd reviews of the dishes so far have been marvellous.
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on 4 July 2015
Here's my two cents worth for those who may be put off buying a perfectly good book by some of the negative reviews. First, my credentials. I've bussed, walked, trained, and driven over much of inland Spain and rate the cuisines - there isn't just one - second only to Italy in the whole of Europe (followed by British and French in that order). Contrary to some reviews, this book is extremely practical and one of the best Spanish cookbooks in English. There are in fact, only about 50 of 500 pages devoted to History and Culture, another 40 to the roots of the regional cuisines, and then 10 pages on basic techniques. The latter two are utterly vital if you are to understand what you are doing and why. The first is merely extremely interesting. Which means that 80% of the book is recipes. I haven't done an accurate count, but there are at least 300 full recipes - mostly with an excellent picture - that's more than double the number of recipes found in most popular cookcooks by cheffy-types - and these are good and authoritative recipes with sources. In addition there are literally hundreds of mini-recipes/suggestions/variations enabling you to expand your repertoire even more. What one reviewer bizarrely calls "name-dropping" are lovely short introductions to some of the people Roden got her recipes from - essential information if you value authenticity. My own view of this book is that it is a clear classic - and I don't usually like Roden's books. I literally cannot understand why anyone who likes cooking good food would not find it interesting and very useful.

Finally, if it's so good, why only four stars? A few of the recipes I looked at contained "fine matzo meal". This is just a Jewish cracker blitzed to a powder in a food processor. If you can't find it, you can make your own using any salt-free crackers or, much more sensible, use very fine breadcrumbs instead - the packet ones are ok. If you think they aren't quite fine enough, just bash them in a pestle and mortar. I dropped the star because when its "medium matzo meal" the book usually says "or breadcrumbs" but not when its "fine matzo". This is a minor irritant but it's sloppy and might cause some people considerable trouble before they come up with a solution.
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