Charcuterie and French Pork Cookery
Obviously a strong French influence, but English recipes included too. We have yet to try many of the recipes - but the brawn worked out lovely, so are keen to have a go at further charcuterie now.
Preserves - River Cottage handbook 2
A very nice comfortable book, with a nice feel. It doesn't cover everything, of course, but focuses mostly on preserves made from food that could be grown in the UK, or found in the hedgerows (citrus fruits aside). The title preserves', to my mind, implies jams and chutneys, but it also covers cordials, vinegars, sauces etc. What it does well, is explain the science behind preserving, and guidance on how to make a chutney or jam with the ingredients you actually have , and it covers bottling, water baths and longevity of the products.
The River Cottage Meat Book
A cook book, but also a thinking book. Discussion on different rearing systems and ethics, through to very handy diagrams detailing various cuts of meat. A very useful guide, as well as inspirational.
The New Rayburn Cookbook
Obviously, I bought this book when I suddenly found all I had to cook with was a rayburn when we moved house. And it was very useful too - I found out the previous owner had the shelves in upside down, how the controls worked, and basically that it was not that frightening afterall. But this is a great cook book in its own right, and I would still refer to it even if we did not have a rayburn. Not just homey country recipes - although the scones and muffins are there.. but also more interesting and exotic, such as mussels and Thai recipes. Great for using with your rayburn as recipes are designed to fit the oven tray etc, but nothing stopping you using the recipes in a conventional oven either.
The River Cottage Cookbook, by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall
well this is the modern day book on downsizing, and it is great - part cook book part vegetable expert part smallholder guide. I am never sure if this book belongs in the kitchen, the living room or the sheep field. A great all rounder. Let me put it this way.. if I lost my copy, I would buy another.
The book of Preserves
This is an Australian Women's Weekly book, which is a pity for me as I don’t deal in cups as a measurement very well, particularly with dry ingredients. However, you can convert the recipes (with a bit of faffing about and a calculator..) and the book is a wonderful source of very interesting recipes, as well as the classics. It covers Jam, marmalade, jellies, fruit butters and spreads, chutney, pickles and liqueurs. as well as recipes, each section gives a basic guide to the making process, so you can make up your own recipes after that. Its another out of print book, but pick it up if you can.
How to Freeze
Really handy book, ideal for freezing a glut of vegetables, fruit - or leftovers!. Set out alphabetically, just look up what you want to freeze, and you can find out if you can, how, and how to thaw. I turn to it all the time
Original whistle stop cafe cookbook
If you have enjoyed the novel, and the film; Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe , then this book is a natural follow on - and if you haven't - its a good purchase anyway - a really good book full of Southern food recipes, pictures, commentary, snippets from the novel, written by the same author, Fanny Flagg. Gives you a taste of the cookery and culture of Alabama.
Besides which, it's a very handy book to turn to to use up a sudden glut of green tomatoes when the blight has taken out your plants....
a great little book that is ideal for dealing with the surplus from your garden, allotment or vegetable box. The recipes are simple and yet delicious. Highly recommended.