The Cooking Book by Victoria Blashford-Snell – review

The Cooking Book This could just as easily be called “The BIG Cookbook”, “The Everything You Will Ever Need to Know About Cooking Cookbook” or “Recipes for the Culinarily Challenged”. The Cooking Book is a bumper volume with added extras.

Editor-in-chief Victoria Blashford-Snell has produced a book that is amazing both in format and in content. The “extras” include a 90-minute DVD which gives hand-holding instructions on cooking techniques. There is also a unique addition of a pocket shopping list for each recipe in the book, which saves you the bother of writing one yourself. What a great idea!

The Cooking Book has over 1000 recipes. The cover describes them as “favourite everyday recipes” but they are quite a bit more special than that. There is a definite international feel and the dishes are well chosen to be easy to prepare. Each one is clear with step-by-step instructions and cooking times. There are tantalising photographs for every recipe which help to give a vibrant feel to the book.

I am impressed by the dishes. They reflect modern tastes but include traditional favourites as well. It’s good to see sausages getting a mention. In these days of high food prices more of us are looking at cheaper cuts of meat, and the humble banger helps us spin out the housekeeping money. Sausage, Bacon and Egg Pie makes an attractive and tasty family meal. Fabada is a spicy Spanish sausage stew that would make a scrumptious dish for a casual dinner party. Some fresh crusty bread and a salad would be all you’d need to add.

We should all eat more fish and The Cooking Book offers, amongst others, Mackerel with Cucumber Salad – that’s still a reasonably priced fish. Stuffed Sardines in Vine Leaves would be a delight when the weather is good enough for a barbecue, or Fisherman’s Tuna Stew for when it’s not. Plan to eat a lot of this next summer!

The Cake and Dessert section is mouth-watering. Caramel Apple and Almond Tart is a delicious change from the more usual Pear and Almond Tart. Autumn Fruit Tart has the feel of an old-fashioned pud. Apples, pears and blackberries are always a great combination and this looks as good as it tastes.

The Cooking Book is a complete and broad-based recipe book that is ideal for either the novice cook or the experienced culinary hand. A smashing family cookbook.

The Cooking Book
Author: Victoria Blashford-Snell
Published by Dorling Kindersley
Price: £25.00
ISBN 978-1-4053-3222-4


Cookbook review by Chrissie Walker © 2018