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Over the past few years since I've lived away from my parents I seem to get a new recipe book every Christmas and this Jamie Oliver book is one of the ones which I use the least. I enjoy watching Jamie's shows on the television where he tries to encourage people to cook their family meals from fresh instead of using processed foods, I like how he has family values at heart and like to see how this is reflected in his books as well as just the shows, however, sometimes I think that this book is just too focussed on the man himself and not actually on his food.
This book is hard back and just a little smaller than A4 so it's a managable size. It also isn't overly thick with having just 250 pages which sounds a lot but isn't in comparrison to some of the huge dense books i have on my recipe book shelf!
Within this book you will find:
Herbs and Spices
Salads and Dressings
Fish and shellfish
Meat, poultry and game
Risotto and Couscous
Stocks, sauces, bits and bobs, this that and the other
Now when you first open this book you will be treated to a very contemporary photograph of the chef himself inside his kitchen, looking as though he's in the middle of explaining a recipe with a big smile on his face. It's in black and white making it stand out and is very 'Jamie oliver'. By this I mean in other cook books you don't expect to see pictures of the chef throughout the book but the whole point of this is that it is a Jamie Oliver book and not only is he selling his recipes but also himself too.
Modern cookery books by well known chefs seem to have different photographs now, before they were focussed on the step by step instructions or the finished product now the photographs include the chef showing off what he is doing too. Perhaps this is distracting or maybe it makes it more personal, it's up to you what you think.
In the introduction Jamie doesn't tell you about food and what ingredients you should work with and which ones you should try to limit in your diet, instead it's all bout him! There is information about his inspiration for the book, about his childhood and his love for food. If you are just wanting a cookery book without any personality then this probably isn't for you or you should just skip this section! I quite like it though, it's nice to get a feel for the inspiration behind the recipes and to have this personal section.
Recipes that you can find in this book vary a lot and include:
Fast-roasted cod with parsley, oregano, chilli and lime
North African lamb with chilli, ginger, chickpeas and couscous
Pan-cooked artichokes with lemon, thyme and garlic.
Lemon and lime cream tart
As you can tell just by looking at the above recipes they are rather long-winded in title. If you are looking for traditional food such as lasagne or shepherd's pie you can be sure that you won't find it in here! This cook book is more for sensational foods, something a bit different with a long-winded title to go with it!
The way the recipes are laid out kind of lets the book down which is a shame. I do think that maybe the emphasis of a cookery book should be on the actual recipes and not on the person behind them but this book is more about Jamie Oliver.
At the beginning of each section there are some notes of reference which is useful. At the beginning of most recipes is Jamie talking in first person about what he thought about the dish for example when talking about the lemon and lime cream tart "This tart's one of my favourite combinations- lemon and lime to me is so much more refreshing than just plain old lemon." I'm unsure as to whether this is actually necessary but again does carry on the informal theme of this book.
The recipes are set out like this- the introduction about it from Jamie, the list of ingredients which are in blue text and then the recipe set out in paragraphs of black text.
I find that the recipe is a bit daunting, these are quite complex dishes with several ingredients and so you would like instructions that are easy to follow so that if you glance away to do your preparation you can look back again and know exactly where you are on the page and this book just doesn't do that. You look back and you have no idea where you last read. The instructions are not in a step by step way, yes it's broken down but only in words and not in actual text as there are no bullet points or numbers which would be useful and clearer.
There are not pictures of each dish but of around a third of them and these take up an entire page and always look very sensational with lots of oil dripping off the dish and carefully placed cheese shavings and things.
I am disappointed with this book because it just isn't all about food like I expect from a recipe book. I am aware that Jamie Oliver is a big TV personality now but I didn't want to buy his autobiography, instead I wanted to have a recipe book. This book is just too focussed around Jamie's opinions on everything and has some very potencious sounding dishes which can be intimidating.
When I flick through this I am often not inspired to start cooking one of the dishes and usually it's because the title of it is just so long winded that it makes it sound more complicated than it actually is! I would prefer to see something which sounds simple!
The way that the recipes are set out isn't very clear, I prefer step by step instructions that are laid out so that you can see with ease what you need to do and that when you look away to carry out the step you can pick up where you left off immediately. This, however, is set out so that the instructions are in long-winded paragraphs that isn't really cooking friendly for me.
I think that if you are quite an accomplished cook then this would be a good book for you as it offers some different and interesting ideas for you in a way which isn't patronising. For me, however, I need patronising! I do like step by step instructions and clear diagrams when it comes to cooking and so this book just doesn't do it for me.
The photographs are all very sensational and mouthwatering, they're very well done and do sell the recipes it's just a shame that the rest of the book doesn't have this effect.
I don't use this book very often as I find that the majority of dishes take a lot of effort and there is no information to tell you how much effort is actually involved so sometimes I begin a dish which sounds straight forward and then it ends up taking much longer than I thought it would.
I do like Jamie Oliver but I prefer to watch him on the television, this book just isn't up to the mark and there are some far better cookery books on the market than this.
The Naked Chef is one of the first cookery books I ever bought and was written by Jamie Oliver to accompany a tv series on the BBC. It was originally published by the Penguin Group in 1999. The Naked Chef is a relatively short book of 250 pages, 7 of which include index and a further 3 for introduction.
This was at a time when Jamie was still training as a chef and from what I recall of the tv series was set in his upstairs flat and included quite a few parties.
Naked in the context of the book means going back to basics or using a rustic approach where he quite often just makes meals out of what seems impossible ingredients and it is not uncommon to just to rip or tear meat and vegetables and slam them in the oven with a drop of oil. It is stripping food back to the bare essentials and preparing meals that are fun.
The introduction begins by detailing his life - how he became a chef and where he has worked in his then short career including Antonio Carluccio's Neal Street Restaurant and at the River Café.
Jamie begins by detailing a list of ingredients he suggests as a "basic list for your larder" which includes porcini mushrooms, nuts, cocoa powder and anchovies!
There are twelve main chapters:
Herbs and Spices
Salads and Dressings
Fish and Shellfish
Meat, Poultry and Game
Risotto and Couscous
Stocks, Sauces, Bits, Bobs, This, That and the Other
Herbs and Spices - using fresh or dried and the spices Jamie keeps in his larder
Soups - minestrone, dry grilled chicken with ginger, Chinese greens and noodles in a herb broth
Salads and Dressings - potato salad, green salad, baby spinach, fresh pea and feta cheese salad
Pasta - making pasta, pappardelle with mixed wild mushrooms, pappardale with sweet leeks and mascarpone
Fish and Shellfish - fast-roasted cod with parsley, oregano, chilli and lime, perfectly cooked live lobster
Meat, Poultry and Game - pork and crackling, roast leg of lamb, spiced slow-cooked lamb shanks
Vegetables - braised cabbage with smoked bacon and peas, vegetable tempura
Pulses - butter beans with marinated tomato, chilli and basil, baked butter beans with leeks, Parmesan and cream
Risotto and Couscous - spicy squash risotto with thyme and mascarpone, couscous salad
Bread - focaccia, beer bread, cottage bread, ciabatta
Desserts - baked fruit, chocolate pudding, fruit crumble, lemon and lime cream tart
Stocks, Sauces, Bits, Bobs, This, That and the Other - chicken stock, flavoured butter, mayonnaise
This is a good read with recipes that are straight forward and easy to do in your own home. It is not a book however that I have used to create any dishes of my own but is certainly worth buying and is available (new) from Amazon for £18.99.
Released in 1999, this is a hardback cookbook with 256 pages.
We purchased the book from WH Smiths for £14.99 back when it was fairly news, so I can recommend it based on over 10 years of use....wow!!! 10 years of Jamie Oliver and his recipes, it makes me feel old and i'm sure he must be feeling it too.
Where can you buy it:
Available in any good bookstore, you can buy it easily online at Waterstones or Amazon, prices vary greatly if you want a really cheap copy check out Amazon Marketplace for a book under £3.
Whats it about:
When Jamie started he was a cocky Essex lad who travelled round on his scooter, meeting his 'cool' mates and cooking for them, be it at a surf party, prior to a gig by his band or simply before a night on the beers, this was during the cool brittania period and the message was heavily, this is food to eat whilst having a good time.
Whats good about the book:
It looks great, the recipes were something different at the time and it is reasonably well organised. The photography is excellent, the recipes easy to follow and it felt different at the time and has been imitated countless times since.
Whats in it:
The book begins with an introduction to the man and why he cooks, then a section on one of his favourite things, herbs and spices, it then follows up with all the usual suspects, soups, salads, pastas, fish, meat, vegetables, pulses, risotto, bread, desserts and stocks.
Its a decent book and things like pulses are a really good addition as these are a cheap means of eating and aren't covered in most books.
Any Bad Points:
As always there are some fairly elaborate recipes and loads of spices, some ingredients are expensive and inaccessible too.
Overall its a good, interesting and well presented book that has stood the test of time better than Jamie's haircut on the front cover!!
One of the first Jamie Oliver books that I purchased! Its yet another colourful, inviting Oliver book, not his best to date, infact far from it, although it was a long time ago now that this book was published! The book is, I would say, dominated by the pasta recipes and is certainly inspired by Italian cuisine! Alot of the recipes is this book are fairly straight forward, like alot of his recipes and yet still yummy! Loved the 'Vegetable Tempura' recipe, this is one everyone should try! We used to serve asparagus tempura in a restaurant I worked in with Gucamole, sour cream and sweet chilli sauce all of which I am sure would accompany this recipe well. I also love his 'Pork and Crackling' something that every household should enjoy, simple but with a twist in this case he adds fennel seeds and balsamic vingegar for the sweet twist. Also touching back on the pasta section of the book, those of you who havent made pasta before should flick to this recipe and make some, simple fresh and delicious and thats one thing this book has in abundance, pasta recipes! Good book.
Recently my husband, who hasn't cooked for all the time we have been married, has become obsessed with Jamie Oliver and cooking his recipes. Of course I don't really mind this and the meals tasted absolutely gorgeous with my husband saying they were easy to make. So after a few meals I decided to try and make a recipe from Jamie Oliver's most famous books 'The Naked Chef'. So I decided to make the pork chops with thyme, lemon and pesto.
The page is laid out quite well with a picture of what the meal should look like, the ingredients in a list in bold writing and then the actual recipe. I found the recipe quite easy to follow but I my husband found it hard at first as he wasn't used to following recipes. The main reason for this is that the recipe is not listed in paragraphs or simple 1,2,3 steps but is just one big paragraph. I think it may only be a small picky negative for me but I don't think it is the best way the recipe could have been laid out.
The meal did taste lovely and was easy to do; my next task is to get my daughter to make us a meal! It only took around half an hour to make this meal including all preparation and cooking the meat. There are also lots of recipes in this book that I am itching to try out including desserts and other dishes such as pasta and chicken.
Overall this recipe book impressed me and I will definitely try out more of the recipes in there. There are probably hundreds of recipes in this book and they all look lovely. The RRP of The Naked Chef is £14.99 but I don't know if you can get it cheaper online.
God, this book is written almost as ineloquently as he bloody speaks - the only saving grace is the lack of "lisp". The beginning of the book is really quite helpful, listing the ingredients you ought to have in your cupboard. All very helpful, but exactly how many of us have ten different types of vinegar just sitting there - most 'normal' people read a recipe, see that it needs something they don't have and go out and buy it. There is blatant advertising for Sainsbury's throughout this book on more than one occasion we are told that "you can get these ingredients in Sainsbury’s or other stores" makes me wonder just exactly how much money Sainsbury’s are paying Mr Oliver. After all, at the end of the book he thanks four different shops for their assistance and for providing him with good quality food and I noted that Sainsbury’s was missed out of this gratitude. Does that mean that perhaps even after all the adverts – so many adverts – that he doesn’t even shop there! Has anyone ever seen him in a Sainsbury’s I wonder? My own personal view of Sainsbury's is not so great - I got knocked off my feet by one of their car-park staff in a rather large store and a 6 inch bruise on my torso 2 weeks before my wedding - customer service weren't very helpful as the culprit was 'a bit simple' (according to them) so a warning to you all... Sainsbury's = nice food Sainsbury's = dangerous place to shop! Back to the book - I found that the recipes were unnecessarily complicated, like lots of little stories and about half the meat recipes were for lamb - not a food of choice in my house! Maybe I’m a traditionalist, but this ‘cookery book’ read more like a biography for James Oliver. Mind you, I can honestly say that I have had hours of fun with the book. Because it's written the way he talks, you can do good impress
ions of him by reading the recipes out loud! In his defence though, this was a good stab at a first book there are maybe one or two really good recipes in here - the second book is slightly better and the third is better still – can’t wait for the fourth book so I can hear all about his new baby and other events in his life!
Jamie Oliver's first book accompanies his BBC TV series of the same name which is due to start in April. It is a must for everybody. His recipes are delicious and, more importantly, simple to make. Whether you enjoy cooking or you've never really had a go, you will love Jamie's approach. The title THE NAKED CHEF refers to his 'strip it bare then make it work principle' whereby he encourages the reader to make great, modern food at home; no fuss, just fantastic results. He is passionate about ingredients and encourages his reader to shop around at markets for the best meat and fish and the freshest vegetables. He also steers clear of culinary jargon and time-consuming cooking processes. You will not be able to keep out of the kitchen once you have this book - even kitchenphobes will adore it! My favourite recipes in the book(although I love everything I have made so far from it) are: Slow-cooked Artichokes, Sweet Cherry Tomatoes, Thyme and Basil; Farfalle with Artichokes, Parmesan, Garlic and Cream; Seared Encrusted Tuna Steak with Fresh Coriander and Basil; and Simple Chocolate Tart. Out of all the cookbooks I have at home, this is the one I can see I will use time and time again. It is quite simply the best! I can't wait to see Jamie's TV series now - if the book is anything to go by then it is sure to be amazing.
Why the NAKED CHEF? Is Jamie starkers behind the stove? No unfortunately not! Apparently the title of this cookery book is about stripping food back to the bare essentials. To quote from Jamie’s blurb: - “It’s me cooking at home, sociable, simple food with my friends, stuff you can put in the middle of the table on real occasions. Or, lm in the markets, asking questions a lot of people feel they can’t ask; it’s reality, and l want it to be fun.” So what’s it all about then? In essence it’s a cookery book. Jamie Oliver’s first book to be published and since its publication in 1999 two further books have hit our shelves – The Return of the Naked Chef in 2000 and Happy Days 2001. The book is sectioned off into the following: INTRODUCTION Here the author gives you a bit about his background, about what brought him to cookery. His cooking history, how he began at aged 8, his college years at Westminster Catering College, his time spent in France, work in London at Antonio Cartuccio’s Neal Street Restaurant and finally his time spent under Ruth Rodgers and Rose Gray at the River Café, London. FIRST MOVE Really here he simply tells us what he considers to be the basic larder commodities which should be found in a cook’s kitchen. He suggests a basic list for the larder, including: Mustards – Dijon, wholegrain and english Oils – extra virgin, olive and sunflower Sun dried tomatoes Dried mushrooms – porcini Rice – basmati, arborio, carnaroli HERBS & SPICES Jamie discusses the pros and cons to be found when purchasing fresh and dried herbs. It seems the fresh herbs always come out the winner! He also introduces spices and gives the reader nine basic commodity spices for the larder: - <
br>+ black peppercorns + dried chillies + nutmeg + cloves + coriander seeds + fennel seeds + cumin seeds + caraway seeds At this point we move on to the recipes. There are 11 sections in which the book is split. Mostly each section has an introduction from Jamie. I have considered whetting your appetite with a recipe or two, but changed my mind – GO BUY THE BOOK! SOUPS Personally, l love soups and from the intro l can see so too does Mr Oliver. He lists five of his favourite soups. My favourite in this section has to be “Fresh Tomato and Sweet Chilli Pepper Soup, with Smashed Basil and Olive Oil” This dish can be served hot or cold. SALADS & DRESSINGS Here he begins to show his ingenuity. Salads in his mind have been misrepresented in the UK for a long time, so he tries to liven them up and make the salad more exciting to the palette. He sub-sections the salads and dressings further. His salads include: - Beetroot Salad with Marjoram & Balsamic Vinegar Potato Salad with Salsa Verde Warm Salad of Radicchio, Gem & Pancetta Jamie also gives us the recipes for 6 home made salad dressings. One tip is to make the dressing as close to usage time as possible – when the flavours are still fresh. PASTA Jamie readily admits he is hooked on pasta. It is his passion. He blames hi Italian mate Marco for instigating this passion! He does not knock dried pasta either – well not everyone has the time, facilities or know how to make up a fresh batch each time do they? His first recipe is to introduce the reader to making pasta – he also has pictures to help us through! Everything is explained in a straightforward step by step manner. His recipe dishes include: - Tagliatelle with baby courgettes, lemon and basil Ravioli with potato, watercress and cheese Spicy squas
h, basil and ricotta tortellini with crispy herbs Farfalle with watercress and rocket pesto FISH & SHELLFISH There’s no real introduction to this section simply straight into the recipes. I’ll be the first to admit that this is my personal least favourite section. Why? Simply because l detest seafood. It is awful l know, some of the dishes when described sound delicious but try as l might l do not like fish. Still for you fish lovers some of the recipes include: - Baked red mullet with oregano, lemon and black olive mash Seared encrusted tuna steak with fresh coriander and basil Kedgeree MEAT, POULTRY & GAME Again no intro from the author, he rushes straight to the recipes. Probably because he has so many delights to offer the reader he does not want to waste a second of possible cooking time on waffling! Again recipes include: - Pork & Crackling North African lamb with chilli, ginger, chickpeas and couscous Fragrant green chicken curry Steamed and roasted duck with honey and oyster sauce Boiled bacon and pease pudding VEGETABLES We have an intro again! Jamie is trying to introduce us to new vegtacular tastes. He feels the British public tend to stick to what they know and are therefore missing out. It is probably true – l tend to buy carrots, parsnips, potatoes, onions and peas. Sometimes splashing out on corn or courgettes. Variation is the spice of life! So what does he introduce us too? Pan-cooked artichokes with lemon, thyme & garlic Steamed asparagus with lemon and anchovy butter Spicy roasted squash Vegetable tempura PULSES This is a growth area according to Jamie – interest is heightening in the UK regarding dried beans and rice. Pulses are very versatile they have uses in salads, stews, soups, and casseroles or as a
side vegetable dish. Jamie does not dump the reader in at the deep end either he gives direction on cooking too. So what treats does he give us? Humous Black-eyed beans with spinach & balsamic vinegar Butter beans with marinated tomato, chilli & basil RISOTTO & COUSCOUS In this section he wants to introduce the reader to the concept of theses rice dishes as meals we can make at home and not as he says we currently feel they are “poncy restaurant food.” He also leaves a few handy hints when preparing and making such dishes. He simply leaves a basic risotto recipe, which then can be varied upon. Mushroom risotto with garlic, thyme & parsley Seafood risotto with fennel & chilli Minted asparagus & pea risotto He then gives us recipes using that North African dish of couscous – it is not rice by the way. It is a cereal rolled into pellets – from processed and dried semolina. Dishes include: - Spicy couscous Couscous salad Steamed couscous infused with caraway seeds & fennel seeds BREADS Jamie imparts the art of bread making to the public. One of his mentors Gennaro told him to treat the dough like a woman – delicately and gently but using a degree of strength and vigour! So what freshly baked delights does Mr Oliver impart to us? Firstly the basic bread-making recipe which then again may be varied on. Focaccia Beer Bread Ciabatta Rolls Pizza DESSERTS Again the introduction is the vein of widening your basic repertoire and introducing new tastes to your palette. So what delicacies are included: - Chocolate Pudding Fruit Crumble Leone & Lime Cream Tart STOCK, SAUCES, BITS, BOBS, THIS, THAT & THE OTHER Basically Jamie gives us his recipes for making all those delicious meals gel – i.e. Chicken stock Apple Sauce Mayo Do you get the picture? INDEX & THANKS Really this speaks for itself! PERSONAL OPINION I love it. Simple as that really. The book is special, the pictures ooze sex appeal (and that’s just the food!) and you can nearly smell the food from them alone. Jamie writes as he speaks – everything is pukka or wicked. His enthusiasm is catching too. I’d recommend any of his books – it you love to cook, especially modern British food, if you like to experiment with new tastes and textures – well he’s the man for you. There are also a few tasty shots of Mr Oliver to sample as well – for those who are interested! I got my copy for a book club, retailing at twenty pounds. Copies can be bought at such outlets as Waterstones or indeed WH Smith’s or the like. The ISBN number is 0-7181-4360-4 and the book accompanies the BBC series of the same name. ENJOY - Heather
Jamie is unfortunately suffering from chronic over exposure these days. You can’t move in Sainsbury's without seeing his beaming mug. He and "Jooles" are plastered over every magazine and advert and he seems to have inspired a whole new clothing look. Duffer of St John must be extremely pleased. I read recently that he is only going to do one more series, as he is intent on opening his own place. He seems to be compromising his values a bit these days, advertising pre-packed herbs and such like but wouldn’t you for large amounts of cash? All this hype and attention is detracting from his real talent. He really can cook, and he certainly knows how to help us do it too. I brought the first book shortly after it came out. I have managed to make every recipe I can in my tiny kitchen. Our particular favorites are his roast chicken recipe - Pukka Chicken as he calls it, the Chocolate tart and the lemon and lime tart and his Herb Encrusted Tuna Steak. Each recipe is well laid out and easy to follow. He offers alternatives to ingredients and encourages experimentation. There is not a single recipe in this book that even the worst can’t Cook, Won’t Cook contestant could manage. The second book expands on the first and adds some great new ideas. Take the Carrots in White Wine for instance, they are certainly different, and make a refreshing change to boring old boiled veg. He uses this book to add depth to the first set of recipes, giving you more dessert ideas a wider range of risotto dishes, more vegetable recipes and even a few cocktails and drinks. The best thing about Jamie's cooking style is that it gives you a lot of freedom to experiment. He encourages you to step off the beaten path and mess around with food. He gives you weights and measures in the recipes, but you get the sense from watching him cook that these are just guidelines. You won’t fail horribly if you don’t weig
h the flour to the last gram in you puff pastry, or change the recipe for "Botham Burgers" by adding a little chopped chili. The only downside to all these recipes is the cost of ingredients. He recommends using a huge range of fresh herbs, meats and vegetables. This is OK if you live near a good market. Unfortunately I don’t! The only other negative point is that most of the recipes serve the forty thousand, so calculate your ingredients carefully if you are only cooking for two.
Jamie Oliver could have played the Artful Dodger but not Oliver himself in the film of Dickens' book - he's too streetwise. And his recipes are for real people on the street too. Loads of yummy food for all kinds of occasions, with easy to follow instructions and colourful, mouthwatering pictures. It's great when what you've cooked looks exactly like the picture, but Jmaie also allows for flexibility, often offering alternatives to main or secondary ingredients. You need to quite a confident cook, but only because some of the ingredients used are fairly exotic - but it's worth making the effort to get them.
Jamie is a very 21st century chef, upto date with the people of today. These days most people work and don't have time to cook when they get home for hours and hours, they want something tasty, quick and easy. That is just what this book is all about, there are hundreds of recipes to tempt even the fussiest of eaters. There are many beautiful pictures to give an idea of what the dishes should look like and easy and concise instructions. With his very chatty and laided back style, this is a good prezzie for anyone!
I have watched Jamie Oliver from the day he started and think he's excellent he's the young mans Delia Smith. His cooking is basic but tasty. Theres non of this weighing etc. its a handfull of this and a dash of that. His meals are very spicy and use alot of herbs and garlic. His Roast Chicken (page 120) is very tasty and has made one hell of a difference to our sunday dinners. Try his basic bread (page 184) its easy. Come on lads Jamie has shown us all how to do it in a way thats as easy as opening a tin of Beans. So go out and get the book and get cooking (no I'm not on commission!!).
The danger of someone like Jamie Oliver is that in his trendiness, his scooters and his loud shirts, his gorgeous wife and endless slang, the food becomes an adjunct to the lifestyle, and that what people are buying is a little slice of the street smart scamp's way of life. Of course, little Jamie probably wouldn't have got as far as he has on just that: 'The Naked Chef' may well be joining a trial already blazed by Nigel Slater, and be describing an approach also advocated by Nigella Lawson and Ainsley Harriott - but who cares? This is real good food, this is taking a pleasure in the creation of good food, and this is not letting all the preparation take over your life. Jamie advocates getting your hands dirty, enjoying the process as much as the consumption, and convinces that food is something to revel in. The book contains far less of the trendy 'pukka'speak for which he's reknowned, but it is exceptionally readable and easy to use. And I can tell you that my 'Seared Encrusted Tuna Steak with Fresh Coriander and Basil' while not looking as splendid as the picture in the book, was quiet fabulous last night.
This book is a collection of simple but effective Italian influenced recipes. Jamie’s philosophy of converting out of reach restaurant recipes in to home cooking has had enormous appeal to everyone trying to cook good food at home. His work is accessible and he gets this across in a language that isinformative yet pressure free, while constantly guiding the wary cook. He gives a new twist to old favourites and has updated the old-fashioned English Pease Pudding by adding garlic, shallots and fresh herbs to the dish. His Perfect Roast Chicken, which is infused with a variety of fresh herbs, olive oil and lemon has been reprinted in various British food and women's magazines. Despite the many variations of risotto, he manages to come up with new variations on an old theme: his spicy squash risotto with fresh thyme and mascarpone is a terrific accompaniment to his Skate Wings with prosciutto, capers and lemon. The book is dived into 13 sections covering herbs and spices, soups, salads, fish, meat, poultry, vegetables, breads,pulses, pastas, risotto and desserts. His final chapter is a miscellaneous collection of helpful hints and recipes such as clarifying stock.
Being a bit of an adventurous cook, always willing to try new things, I try to watch as many cookery programmes on TV as I can. I didn't see all of Series 1 of the Naked Chef, because of work, and the fact that we didn't have a video at that time, but the episodes I did see made me rush out and buy the book ASAP! Jamie Oliver is a truly modern cook - never afraid to change things or encourage the reader to change a recipe themselves. If you like the sound of a recipe, but would prefer to use salmon instead of cod - try it! The rules of this type of cooking are that there are no real rules. You can experiment as much as you like with most of these recipes, and find out what works for you. None of the recipes are too hard, and although some may appear to have lots of ingredients, they really aren't always necessary, so you can usually get inspiration from a recipe and adapt it to suit whatever you have on hand. Great recipes, clear instructions, and the chapter on pasta is inspirational!
Jamie Oliver combines bold flavours and fresh ingredients within simple recipes. He is at the cutting edge of modern life and modern British cooking. "The Naked Chef" is for people who want great modern food but who also want things simple - people who work for a living, and haven't got the time or energy to spend all night cooking. It's all about giving people confidence and getting them to feel at ease in the kitchen.