The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook – A Review

by isabelcanosa

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This blog is quickly turning into ‘The Appreciation Society of Smitten Kitchen’. I promise I will vary my sources but why not start with the best?!  I discovered Deb Perelman’s blog about 5 years ago when I was searching for a for red velvet cake (when it was still a rarity in the UK). It was love at first recipe. The cake was perfect beyond belief and no one believed I had made it (“did you get that from Hummingbird Bakery?”). From that point on I was hooked on her stories, recipes and personality. She is my ‘go to’ for any breakfast/lunch/dinner, be it just me and The Dishwasher or a room full of tipsy friends, her dishes always win. Naturally I was extremely excited to receive her cookbook, and just in case you were wondering where this review was going; (as if you were) it lived up to my expectations and added a cherry on top of them.

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With the weekly updates on her blog, I look forward to her stories as much as I do the gobbling of her finished dishes. Every story is sharp and entertaining and adds to the recipe, never detracts. The book matches her blog format so each recipe is rounded out by an anecdote which means I was able to sit down with it and read it like a book at work, at home, on the tube and in the bath, from start to finish, ogling at her beautiful pictures as I go. This book is my food porn, seriously. 

With my trusty page markers I began to earmark recipes that I just had to make, until, getting a quarter way through, I realised I had put a marker on every page. So I gave up marking and started cooking.

All recipes have been a huge success and were, as always, extremely easy to follow and simple to do. With a lot of them she has cook tips, basically answering the questions she thinks we would ask if it was her blog, which really helps. Really the finished products speak for themselves. So far I have made five gorgeous, amazing, scrumptious dishes, two of which I will post shortly and one of which (Breakfast Bars) has already appeared on this blog.

I don’t want to put up too many recipes because then I would just spoil the fun of receiving a new cookbook. I know space is always limited, so I would only suggest a cookbook that I knew you would want to use again and again. And trust me when I say this is one of those. No fads, no gimmicks, no pictures of beautiful people standing around drinking beautiful drinks on a roof top in Paris in an unattainable tableau of cool.  Just honest, well thought out recipes, that will become week night staples, show stoppers and memorable, ego stroking ‘’Izzy, you really must make YOUR …….’’ dishes.

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