Having grown up in his parents’ gastropub, Jamie Oliver has always had a special place in his heart for British cooking. And in recent years there’s been an exciting revolution in the British food world in general. English chefs, producers, and artisans are retracing old recipes, rediscovering quality ingredients, and focusing on simplicity and quality. Jamie celebrates the best of the old and new (including classic British immigrant food) in his first cookbook focused on England.
Here are over 130 great, easy-to-prepare recipes, ranging from salads—Heavenly Salmon and Epic Roast Chicken; to puddings—Rhubarb and Rice Pudding and Citrus Cheesecake Pots; to Sunday lunch—Guinness Lamb Shanks and Roast Quail Skewers; and, of course, the crumbliest scones. America has already fallen for the new British gastropub cooking, with popular restaurants by chefs such as April Bloomfield of The Spotted Pig and the John Dory. Now Jamie shows how to make the same delicious food at home. This is definitely not your grandmother’s mushy peas!
My husband, The Doctor, is originally from a town on the southern coast of England. Over our 16 years of marriage, I've learned to cook some of his favorite dishes and so when I had the opportunity to review Jamie Oliver's Great Britain, I jumped at the chance. I offered it to The Doctor to look at and his first response was, "these are all tarted up". Do you need a translation? He meant that Jamie took normal recipes and made them all fancy. But then, Jamie is a famous television chef and most television chefs take normal recipes and "tart them up". That's fine with me, because I then take all their recipes and tweak them my own ways.
I tagged a lot of recipes to try. The one I made though was Early Autumn Cornish Pasties. I make an awesome Shepherd's Pie, Trifle and Armadillo Pie already, and I've always meant to try Cornish Pasties. They were a hit and for the recipe and my comments on the recipe, you can check out my cooking blog. My next one to try is Toad in the Hole, but I need to get proper sausages for that, and I had all the pasty ingredients on hand. The Doctor also wants me to make Scotch Eggs.
One thing that I really liked was Jamie's trifles. The Doctor always complains about the way Americans make English Trifle, with all the lumpy layers and pudding, etc. A true English trifle looks more like this photo (from Jamie's website) with separate, neat layers that have each been allowed to set up. The Doctor also says that a truly good English trifle will make a suction-type of sound when you scoop it and that sound means you have the right consistency and textures. He makes really good trifles and I have to say that he's right.
This is very much a British cookbook, as many of the terms are British. A rasher of bacon for instance, which is one slice. A knob of butter, which (for my cooking purposes) is about 2 Tablespoons and suet, which is basically meat fat. Jamie also uses black sausage and lamb, which while a favorite of The Doctor, isn't a meat that Americans normally cook with. This is also a cookbook for a bit more experienced cook. I don't think I'll be giving it to any new brides or college students.
I loved this cookbook for the commentary and photos as much as for the recipes. This is a large, thick, heavy book, but it's full of historical and personal anecdotes and explanations of recipes and their origins.
Thanks to Lisa at TLC Book Tours for the opportunity to review this cookbook. You can learn more about Jamie Oliver here. You can purchase your own copy here. You can see other reviews and tour stops here.
Saturday, October 6th: Beth Fish Reads
Monday, October 8th: Book Club Classics
Wednesday, October 10th: Anger Burger
Friday, October 12th: girlichef
Monday, October 15th: Peppermint Ph.D.
Tuesday, October 16th: Broken Teepee
Wednesday, October 17th: Southern Girl Reads
Thursday, October 18th: Very Culinary
Friday, October 19th: My Bookshelf
Monday, October 22nd: Zesty Cook
Wednesday, October 24th: Luxury Reading
Thursday, October 25th: Truth, Beauty, Freedom, and Books
Friday, October 26th: The Sisters Cafe
Monday, October 29th: The Cutting Edge of Ordinary
Tuesday, October 30th: In the Hammock
Thursday, November 1st: 2 Kids and Tired
Monday, November 5th: Foodie with Family
Thursday, November 8th: Bookfoolery and Babble
Friday, November 9th: Amused by Books
Monday, November 12th: Farmgirl Fare
Because I think many of you will enjoy Jamie Oliver's Great Britain, thanks to the publisher, I'm offering a giveaway, which I haven't done in a while.
It really bugs me when you have to jump through tons of hoops in order to enter giveaways, so a comment with your email address will suffice.
However: If you change your profile to have your email address visible, if it isn't already, you will gain an additional entry. I ask this because it's so annoying to have someone leave a comment you would like to respond to, but can't, because their email is hidden. This is especially annoying if a question is asked in said comment.
If you choose to become a follower or tell me you already are, you can gain an additional entry too.
If you wanted to blog or tweet about it, that's great too, and you'd get an extra entry for that. Just tell me in your comment if you've done any of the extras.
You don't need to leave separate comments for each thing (too annoying!).
Seriously though, just commenting is enough for me.
U.S. or Canada addresses only and no P.O. Boxes. Sorry!
This giveaway is now closed.
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