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on 9 June 2011
The second Tamsin Day Lewis cookbook I own and it looks like it will be used as much as the first! The recipes are easy to follow; some quite economical, others less so, and (oh goody!) plenty of pictures! The ham and comte cake has become a friday night fixture before the saturday shop, with several different combinations of ingredients. There is no guilty throwing away of "cheese ends" and something to snack on when peckish but not meal time! As an added bonus, there is a recipe for Tartiflette, for which I have searched for ages, having eaten it abroad and at French markets I can finally make my own...though I,ll wait till the weather turns a little more chilly!
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on 25 November 2009
If you ignore the title and just look at this in terms of an ordinary cookbook it is well worth buying. I didnt think there were an enormous amount of ridiculously expensive ingredients mentioned and to be honest if you are a fairly competant cook it is easy enough to substitute something cheaper. The recipes and photos are lovely and as another reviewer mentioned Tamasin is a brilliant cook that we dont hear or see enough of. I think if the book had a different title it would be rated much higher.
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on 25 July 2017
The book was not in the box I received. Apparently, it was not secured with glue or tape so it fell out en route to me. A very unsatisfactory experience!
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on 30 September 2015
Great thank you
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on 14 August 2016
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on 3 July 2014
good condition and as described
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on 9 January 2010
I was given this book for Christmas and I love it. I do feel that the title is a bit misleading but it does explain on the inside cover that this is not a cookery book "about hard-time thrift." If Tamasin has a new way with left overs, stretching out meals, and avoiding waste then I for one am interested - I think she is a great home cook and a very good writer - and the photographs are beautiful. To sum up this is a book that makes me want to get into the kitchen and get cooking.
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on 20 October 2009
Tamasin Day Lewis's last few books have been a little disappointing. Her Kitchen Classics seemed a little rushed and I found many of the recipes unappetising and poorly written. Where Shall We Go For Dinner was a romantic fancy but not up to her usual standard and All You Can Eat is simply a compilation from her previous books (and some might argue a repeat of her brilliant Kitchen Bible).
However, with Supper for a Song, we get more than a glimmer of her previous brilliance, first glimpsed in her early books that were welcomed by true foodies. The thing with Tamasin is she is hard to market. Without the glamour of Nigella or the affable charm of Nigel Slater, she will always struggle to be accepted for what she really is - a truly exceptional food writer. Yes, she does come across as bossy and somewhat millitant about the organic food crusade. This is no bad thing and - newsflash! - the cookbook won't self-destruct if it senses that you've chosen to use produce from Tesco's budget range instead!
I have found all the recipes cooked so far to be superb, in particular the coffee and date sponge (a very cheap-to-make but delightfully simple recipe) and the chick pea and chorizo soup. Tonight I'll be making the fish pie, using whatever fish I have in my freezer.
Firstly, I feel that those who have left negative comments regarding the book and who have mentioned how wealthy Tamasin (and those who enjoy this book!) must be to cook some of these recipes, really don't have that much imagination in the kitchen. If you can't afford pheasant (and seriously, you really don't know anyone who goes shooting and is trying to give away freebie pheasant or rabbit, because I live in a large -non affluent - town and know several) then use chicken. If you can't afford scallops, then don't cook the scallop recipe! Tamasin is trying to infuse a little luxury into some of our lives but some people don't want it...
Secondly, I agree with other comments that the book has been poorly marketed. The people who feel this is targeted at them (i.e. people on a tight budget) have been misled somewhat and are perhaps not familiar with Tamasin's previous books. This is a shame because it reflects badly on the stars awarded to this book. If it had been titled differently, she would have hit a better target market and had glowing reviews a-plenty.
To summarise, for those who just want a cookbook with more unusual recipes for people of mixed budgets, I would highly recommend this book. The recipes are accurate and more importantly tasty and flexible.
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VINE VOICEon 24 November 2009
Firstly, don't buy this book expecting to save yourself any vast amount of money, you'll be disappointed. This book masquerades as one of the many thrifty cookbooks out there at the moment and to be perfectly honest there are far better (try Economy Gastronomy,How to Feed Your Whole Family a Healthy Balanced Diet... or The Thrifty Cookbook). There are a few good ideas, using every bit of your roast chicken, what to do with leftover mash, a few recipes with cheaper cuts of meat etc but you won't find any detailed meal plans or batch cooking recipes here I'm afraid. What's even more offputting is that some of the recipes use maybe not expensive, but not eat everyday ingredients such as squid and salmon, certainly not what you'd eat if you're a family on a tight budget.

However, if you buy this book completely ignoring the frugal label then you won't be disappointed. The book is lovely, with decadent recipes and beautiful photography. I made the banana blondies and they were delicious, who doesn't always have bananas that need using up?! I'm not a massive Tamasin fan and I have another of her cookbooks (given to me) that sits on my shelf pretty much unused but I have already marked out several recipes to cook from Supper For a Song. That said I shall probably be substituting some of the ingredients for cheaper alternatives!

So only 3 stars from me as it definitely doesn't do what it says on the cover but if you can overlook that fact then it's a brilliant book.
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VINE VOICEon 16 August 2012
Format: Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I really enjoyed the author's Tarts With Tops On: A Book of Pies: Or How to Make the Perfect Pie and so I was intrigued to see how she tackled the subject of thrifty cooking.

Without wishing to make too many assumptions, I strongly suspect that Tamasin Day Lewis rarely has to scrimp and save in her personal choices when setting out to cook and, I am afraid it shows, in a book which is rather hit and miss.

For example, she is keen to suggest the roasting of an entire Organic chicken. I am very much in favour of animal welfare standards and, as I am also in the lucky place where I don't have to worry too much about price of ingredients, would make this choice myself if I weren't watching the pennies. But, if I were I would definately be looking for more recipes which involved chicken thighs, wings and drumsticks (even livers) and probably accept that free range is a reasonable compromise on the cost vs. welfare spectrum in a book on thrifty cooking.

In a way it is unfortunate she starts the book with poultry as she then hits a better note with some decent and solid recipes for mince, chickpeas and leftover mash. You might still be raising an eyebrow at sea salt (tests show that there is no additional nutritional or taste value vs. table salt and taste tests identify no difference) and "good extra virgin olive oil and tahini paste (with a specific recommendation of which type of tahini paste)".

I could go on, but you get the idea, cakes need unrefined sugar, dark chocolate should be Green and Black's and carrot cakes should be made with Organic carrots. I'm afraid I gave up when she started building recipes around "1 organic, free-range pork fillet" and amazed to see scallops turn up (in a pea and mint custard made with Jersey cream no less).

So, it is not a bad cook book but it is marred by the premise that it will help you to be thrifty and it will really jar with anyone who is reading it with an eye to going easy on their wallet. If you like her style you'll still enjoy this book but if you want to keep costs down I would avoid it.
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