this the other day. I don't know when it came out, so admit that I may not be the fastest reviewer you have ever come across, but let it be known that I am definitely the most earnest. And, at the moment, for reasons which are unclear, the spottiest.
Anyway. The gorgeous Lorraine comes up with some delicious-sounding recipes. It's not all cakes, there are sausage roll recipes (with bought puff pastry - a woman after my own heart), asian ham, roasted chicken. I always think of baking as bread or cakes, but this book takes baking literally as anything which goes in the oven.
It's a nicely written book, with some great quotes dotted throughout; "As a child my family's menu consisted of two choices: take it or leave it." Buddy Hackett, comedian and actor, 1924-2003.
There are some brilliant tips in there too. One recipe calls for homemade thyme and polenta pastry, but Lorraine advises that you can also use shop bought shortcrust pastry, but just roll polenta and thyme into it. Genius.
Other gems are "I never buy unwaxed lemons as they are so expensive, and not always readily avalible. For zest, buy ordinary lemons and wash them well in hot, soapy water. Give them a good rinse, rub them dry and the waxy coating will come off."
And another top tip..."Seeds from actual vanilla pods give you the best taste. These are extremely expensive in the supermarkets, so if you do lots of baking, vanilla pods can be purchased in bulk on the internet. Instead of paying £3 for just two pods, buying in bulk can work out as little as 12p per pod". That's the kind of practical advice I love.
The only thing which I think is a bit odd is that there are hardly any pictures. There's obviously a fair few pictures of the glorious Lorraine, and despite my spots, I'm not a bitter person so I don't mind that. But I think if you are going to dedicate four glossy pages to a 3-tier Red Velvet Cake, it might be a good idea to show the punters what it should look like. Instead we have 3 pages of type and one pic of Lorraine stirring something. Maybe it's just me, but I really like to see what I'm going to make, or at least what I'm aiming for!
Despite that, there is loads in there that I want to make, classics and classics with a twist, which will keep me out of trouble for a while. Claire