Happy Days with the Naked Chef
Hyperion, 2002 (2002)
Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth
amie Oliver is back! With yet another great cookbook. Given that such a young man has achieved what he has, I would like to be around when he fully matures. Oliver is a down-to-earth cook with down-to-earth dishes that any of us could make, but with unusual ingredients in old favorites. He likes to add raw corn to American style pancakes, top them with bacon and maple syrup. He says, '
The Kid's Club
' talks of involving kids in shopping and cooking - not to just make gingerbread men with grandmom, but everyday salads and family meals. It makes very good points, and the dried fruit gums appeal to the kid in me. Moving on,
Marinated Mozzarella in Cr8me Fraiche with Lemon and Marjoram
looks wonderful - especially dressed with sliced red chilis sprinkled over the top. The salads are new, original and dazzling, e.g.
Scrummy Warm Arugula Salad
. Several salads with raw artichoke don't quite make it for me. But I haven't tried them yet; they surely look good. Continue with
Cr8me Fraiche and Grilled Lemon Dressing
is the first I'll try.
he pasta section of any cookbook is always my favorite. And the
's is no exception. What inspired ingredients Oliver uses to create new and appealing pasta dishes!
Spaghetti with Sweet Cherry Tomatoes, Marjoram and Extra Virgin Olive Oil
looks great; as does
(Oliver and his new bride were served this in a hotel in Positano, Italy), which is combined with
Crab, Lobster, Mussels, Squid and Shrimp
. Yum. I enjoy irreverent cooking terms which use the words
, and, my favorite, '
whopping it straight in your choppers
hile extolling the benefits of eating fish twice a week, the chef gives
recipes. The one for a whole baked salmon sounds
Pan-Seared Scallops with Asparagus and Baby Leeks
also appeals. I'm not too sure about
Wicked Baked Sardines
, but the look is good. Although I don't eat most meats, I have to admit the meat chapter is very appealing.
Slow-Roasted Duck with Sage, Ginger, and Rhubarb Homemade Sauce
Marinated Pork Fillet Roasted on Rhubarb
sounds improbable but looks beautiful. The author says
Chicken in Milk
is slightly odd but a fantastic combination.
Superb Roast Beef, Best Spuds and Huge Yorkies
looks like the ultimate roast for a special night.
here is a '
stonking little veg
Minty Mushy Peas
Smashed Celeriac and World's Best Baked Onions
smashing, pukka, the absolute dog's kahunas
'! I'd go for the
Baked New Potatoes with Sea Salt and Rosemary
in a minute, or for the
. Chef Oliver claims anyone can bake bread and proves it by having kids make it for the photographic instructions; '
Get stuck in
'. With a basic bread recipe, he offers nine simple recipes for '
' breads. There are
Layered Focaccia with Cheese and Arugula
Gennaro Grands Cappella Rossa Calzone
, to name just two.
Sweet Cherry Focaccia Breakfast Stylie
n the dessert section, he does something with pineapple that sounds crazy but is probably divine.
Yogurt with Blueberry Jam and Elderflower Cordial
seems worth a try. I'd almost kill for his fruit cobbler, and
Cheeky Chocolate Mousse
should be essayed for the name alone.
Chocolate and Whole Orange Pudding
must have come down straight from heaven. As does the rest of this cookbook, the
section abounds with good ideas. From the
Best Hot Chocolate
Easy Peasy Ginger Beer
Christmas in a Glass
, Chef Oliver creates interesting and easy recipes. He tops off the
section with ingredients for a
that he especially recommends.
liver's ideas for living healthfully finish another wonderful cookbook. Don't skip this last part. There are some very good tips there ... especially the one entitled '
Eat slowly and enjoy your food.
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