Monday, November 05, 2007

From cookbook to plate in 0-60

The new Gary Rhodes cookbook was placed into my grateful hands today, yes I know “another cookbook!” but I have to admit it looks a real winner. I guess I say that a lot but tasty yet hasty gastro seems to be de rigueur at the moment, apparently we don’t have more than a few moments to linger in the kitchen nowadays, and Gary being a hero of mine is bound to have a delicious take on the theme. The book “Time to Eat” has time-sensitive recipes ranging from the merest flash slaving over a dish to all the time in the world. The chapters are no time to shop, no time to cook, fast food in 15, 20-30 and 30-60 minutes, slow cooking and cooking for pleasure. The first question inside the cover certainly resonates with me, “Do you ever find yourself still chopping vegetables when your dinner guests arrive?”

Generally the first time I get to peruse my new cookbook is on the tube on the way home and the first time I opened Time to Eat the page fell open to bacon and egg risotto in the ‘no time to shop’ chapter. And being hungry and falling into the retail time-poor category but for once having all the necessary ingredients I decided that would be exactly what I’d conjure up as soon as I reached home. And I did and it was delicious and just what I needed! This definitely has to be the shortest time for me from page to plate.

And there are many more recipes I intend to try – as well as a plethora of salads there’s hot asparagus spears glazed with ham, cheddar and Parmesan or lemon and Parmesan pasta, pan-fried white fish with buttery grapes and chervil, a bowl of cauliflower and Camembert, roast chateaubriand with macaroni cheese, risotto Milanese, sharp lime skate with crème fraîche Jersey royals, roast sea trout with spinach, orange and crushed new potatoes, half chestnut guinea fowl, honey, lemon and thyme roast chicken, salt and pepper baby chickens with a red wine vinaigrette and lemon butter and so many, many more. And even though wild horses would never persuade me to eat it but I have to admit the beef tomato and aubergine cottage pie looks stunning.

I cannot imagine that it will be too long before I am flicking the pages and finding time to eat again.

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