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A Simple and Easy to use Cooking Guide
Delia's How to Cook Book Two - Delia Smith
Member Name: huggy2009
Delia's How to Cook Book Two - Delia Smith
Advantages: Simple, easy to read
Delia's How to cook books are a real bugbear to many experienced chef's but they are also hugely popular with the majority of people who don't understand how to make a Hollandaise Sauce as soon as they walk in the house after an 8 hour working day.
The idea of the book is to take forward the principles of her first book, this was the book ridiculed in some quarters for teaching people how to boil an egg, but its a great idea, its a full cookery course in three books, the first book teaches the basics and this book builds on them.
It is simple, concise and cuts out the flowery language and all the things likely to intimidate an amateur wanting to learn more about cooking.
This book looks at cooking with fish, meat and poultry as well as fruit and vegetables.
For me the first chapter is one of the best it deals with your store cupboard and the things anyone serious about cooking should have in it, its not talking about truffle juices extracted from a field overlooking the oldest elephant in Madagascar's sacred burial ground as some slightly more pretentious books do, this is simply talking about ingredients, tins and condiments that will help you in everyday cooking, from mustards to peppercorns, it is honest, not overwhelming and doesn't require months of searching to find these things, most if not all of these things are available in your local supermarket.
Chapter Two: Fish Without Fear
This is a really handy chapter dealing with how to handle fish, how to cut it, what parts to cook and cooking techniques, it also includes some simple yet really effective recipes. My most successful recipe from this chapter is the wonderful Char Grilled Tuna Steak with Warm Coriander and Caper Vinaigrette.
Chapter Three: How to cook meat
A handy chapter, I didn't find this overly informative, although it is great that there are four pages of questions and answers before any recipes, but it gives you the basics to allow you to experiment further
Chapter Four: Chicken and Other Birds
What kind of bird is best, how to joint it, how to roast it, I made my first roast chicken from this and it was hugely enjoyed by everyone so I think this section is excellent for new chefs everywhere.
Chapter Five: A vegetable Calendar
An excellent section which lists when vegetables are in season, how to cook them and what with, its snappy and informative and a great section which has been copied by many other books since.
Chapter Six: Salads and Dressings for Beginners
I'm not a salad person so don't do much with this, but it does make the whole idea of making them slightly less intimidating.
Chapter Seven: Whats new in the Dairy
Cooking with milk and creams, generally this would just be lumped in the dessert section, but its great understanding this a bit more and getting the most out of something you will always have in your fridge. Classic Creme Caramel is the star recipe in this chapter.
Chapter Eight: Fruits for Cooking
Does exactly what you'd expect, we talk about cooking with fruit, advising how to prepare fruit and use it in desserts and main courses.
Chapter Nine: Cheese in the Kitchen
A very used section in my house, I love cheese and this talks about how to combine it with other food and drink as well as presenting recipes from Welsh Rarebit to Red Onion Tart with Goats cheese, this is a gorgeous little chapter and you don't see cheese used so much in recipe books as it is here.
Chapter Ten: Proper Chocolate
How to use Chocolate in cooking, what type, how to prepare it, what it combines best with. Try the Melting Chocolate Puddings as an easy and quick recipe to test your new skills.
This book has recipes from all cultures, covers most major foodstuffs and really breaks down the science of cooking to make it less intimidating and more enjoyable, its a good, well written and researched book and is available at Amazon for £12.31 although it is cheaper via Marketplace.
Summary: A Simple and Easy to use Cooking Guide