Cooking the books…

7 Aug

Look, these are cook books from my actual kitchen. I own these, I read them, I use them. I buy the ingredients they list and follow the instructions as written (usually). See how mucky they are? That is real sweat, oil, flour, sauce and water-damage from my own work surfaces.

However, the beautiful pictures of the finished dishes are lost to me, as if a special secret ingredient or instruction is hidden within the pages for only real cooks to find. My own interpretation is always wide of the mark.

See how varied my selection, Chinese food, comfort food, healthy food, Great British pub food, Italian food, even baby food. I’ve tried something from all of them.

See the amount of celebrity chefs represented? I’ve met a few of them… I asked Gordon Ramsay for his autograph, I asked Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall what he fed his dog, I asked Gillian McKeith where she got her dress from and when Rick Stein was in town I sent my husband along to get his take on Eastern cooking while I sat at home and drank wine. Missed opportunities all!

But you see these books? Each one represents a hopeful possibility of something going right, any one of them could contain a recipe that works, the recipe that goes well and becomes that elusive success.

I keep them, I love them, I buy more. Hope springs eternal…

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3 Responses to “Cooking the books…”

  1. Jenny Eatwell 22/09/2011 at 10:28 am #

    You know, a lot of those books are exactly the same as the ones on my shelves at home! 🙂 My advice would be to not run before you can walk. Pick those recipes that you like the look of, but are simple to do – not ones that take several processes to complete. If you start out getting simple recipes right, then your confidence will build until you’ll be assembling a croque en bouche with your eyes shut. 🙂

  2. Mike 03/10/2011 at 9:20 pm #

    I can see myself tucked away in there…

    • Alice Cant Cook 04/10/2011 at 9:49 am #

      Yes Mike! And I love your book because it actually measures out ingredients like I do – with your eyes.
      But hey ho – this could be where I’m going wrong. You’re a cook and I’m not!
      Do read it often though… x

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