Christmas Gift Round-Up: Best Cookery Books of 2014
If you're wondering what to give family for Christmas, look no further. We've rounded up the best new cookbooks of 2014; UK chefs join internationally renowned talent in this comprehensive gift guide.
Jane Hornby’s friendly and accessible cookery book brings 50 tempting recipes to the reader with clean and simple step-by-step photography and attractive images of finished products. Her baking instructions are easy to follow and comprehensive; her recipes range from Morning Coffee & Afternoon Tea to After Dinner & Desserts, leaving all Christmas requirements fully catered for. Jane Hornby’s book covers every element of the baker’s craft and ensures you’ll never miss a step.
All Things Sweet
Popular Irish chef and teacher at Ballymaloe, Rachel Allen brings a deliciously tempting collection of treats, from indulgent puddings and classic cakes to delicate pastries, luxurious mousses and ice cream. Fresh and healthy bites for a hot summer's day, or decadent winter comfort food are both on offer in abundance making it a useful addition to the kitchen shelf. None of her recipes are too long and complicated, but the finished products look incredibly delectable nonetheless. Her treats are wide ranging, from salted caramel cupcakes to sesame and honey halva or traditional Greek baklava. Quick, unpretentious recipes presented simply and attractively.
British television personality and star of The Great British Bake Off Paul Hollywood brings traditional British recipes to the masses, featuring red cherry cake, baked somerset brie, honey buns, scottish oatcakes and boxty pancakes, to name a few. He categorises them by region, taking his readers on a personal tour from the Southwest all the way up to the Scottish highlands, making his book an interesting insight into British culinary history. Featuring maps and illustrations as well as lovely food photography, Paul adds his own twist to classic British pastries and hearty baked dishes.
FOR THE AMBITIOUS:
The most inventive chef in Britain is out to reclaim the lost tradition of British gastronomy. Historic Heston charts a quest for identity through the best of British cooking, stretching from medieval to late-Victorian recipes. He deconstructs 28 historic dishes and puts them together again, with a range of peculiar recipes including meat fruit (1500) quaking pudding (1660) and mock turtle soup (1892). Heston places his dishes within their social context and follows obscure culinary trails. With incredible illustration and superb food photography, the book makes for a wonderful read through Britain’s colourful, idiosyncratic culinary history. Great fun.
Never Trust a Skinny Italian Chef
An exclusive insight into one of
Mexico: The Cookbook
Margarita Garrillo Arronte
Israeli chef and restauranteur Yotam Ottolenghi is now a household name. He has just published his fourth book, the hotly anticipated follow-up to the bestselling, award-winning Plenty, which brought vegetarian cookery to a much wider audience. Ottolenghi has caused a worldwide food revolution by placing emphasis on flavour, original spicing and freshness of ingredients. Plenty More moves from a focus on ingredients in Plenty to a focus on techniques that best utilise his ingredients' potential. Ottolenghi brings some highly appealing, colourful and flavoursome vegetarian recipes to the masses, with dishes ranging from Alphonso mango and curried chickpea salad, to buttermilk crusted okra, to candied beetroot with lentils and yuzu. The world famous chef's reputation is unavoidable and this new title makes a welcome and timely addition to the bookshelf with its fresh and powerful.
FOR CHRISTMAS COMFORT:
Michael Joseph Press
The new book from the nation's favourite chef certainly doesn't disappoint. Jamie Oliver describes his Comfort Food as 'the opposite of 15 and 30 minute meals.' He categorises his dishes by emotion, ranging from 'Nostalgia' to 'Good mood food' to'Pick me ups'. His photos speak for themselves, and we've long grown used to putting our trust in Jamie's fresh combinations of flavours and comprehensive instructions. Perfect for cosy winter dishes as well as light, yet hearty recipes, the book provides 'scrumptious, happy classics'; a cheerful addition to the kitchen and the perfect gift for a family Christmas.
James Martin challenges the notion of 'comfort food' with an eclectic range of personal dishes that he's learned to love throughout his career 'away from the cameras'. Renowned for his trademark wholesome, hearty British food, James showcases a wide range of recipes including beer-marinated rack of pork with chard gratin, plus old favourites such as the chicken Kiev – but done uniquely and to perfection. Rather than hinging solely on British home dishes James' book also introduces flavours from all over the world, including a delectable looking Thai Lamb salad with spicy dressing and smoky chilli chicken wings, spiced potato wedges and padron peppers. A reflection on how personal and wide ranging one's personal home comforts can be – as well as inspiring new dishes that might become comfort food for your family as well.
Recipes from a Normal Mum
Holly Bell, finalist on The Great British Bake-Off, takes an economical approach to cooking, with accessible ingredients and simple recipes. She also offers useful suggestions for all surplus ingredients, meaning nothing is ever wasted. We love the sound of her chocolate orange trifle, tapenade black breast roast chicken and lemon butter biscuits. Perfect for both long Sunday afternoons or speedy dishes for hungry children.
How to Be a Better Cook
FOR SOMETHING DIFFERENT:
This wonderful book from bestselling young chef Jack Monroe brings seasonal, inspiring and thrifty recipes. A Year in 120 Recipes features stunning food photography, and Jack leads her recipes through the year's calendar in a convincing seasonal approach that fits satisfyingly with her dishes. Her fish tagine for the month of November looks enticing. special occasions are catered for as well as some year-round comforts. The book is entertaining in its resourcefulness: Monroe’s Thai-style pesto-y stuff looks particularly appetizing, and none of her dishes demand too much, whilst looking fresh, healthy and incredibly tasty. CultureWhisper's must-have Christmas gift.