by Nigel Slater
List Price: £12.99
Observer columnist Nigel Slater has chosen his eight favourite foods and sculpted a sensational cookbook around them. And what are they? Potatoes, chicken, sausages, garlic, bread, cheese, ice-cream and chocolate.
For each of the eight he offers a selection of recipes, some from friends and colleagues, including Alastair Little, Rowley Leigh, Peter Gordon and Nigella Lawson. As he explains in the introduction, "By Real Food I mean big-flavoured, unpretentious cooking. Good ingredients made into something worth eating. Nothing fancy. Nothing extravagant. Nothing careless or slapdash. Just nice, uncomplicated food--be it chicken roasted with olive oil, lemon and basil or simply a big, fat mushroom baked in garlic butter and stuffed inside a soft bap." And that's pretty much what he's achieved, though he does let himself go on occasion with recipes like Deep-fried Ice Cream and Mincemeat Parcels.
The book is peppered with short essays on ingredients that bear Slater's trademark dry wit. He is definitely one of Britain's best food writers and his collaboration with photographer Jonathan Lovekin marks this book out from the crowd.