Two recent cookbook releases celebrate the best of British food and both accompany a BBC television series. I must say I haven’t seen the programmes as I don’t watch much television these days, but the books stand alone so that really doesn’t matter.
The first book is the Great British Menu cookbook, a celebration of regional food with dishes from top chefs across the country. The idea of the television series was for the nations finest chefs to compete to represent their region and cook for the Queen so, as you may imagine, the recipes are among the finest the country has to offer and really wave the flag for British food.
Next we have James Martin, the loveable Yorkshireman, back with another in a long line of cookbooks, ‘The Great British Village Show’. The book is jam-packed with recipes from village show contestants up and down the country. As you would expect, British produce is much celebrated in the recipes and there’s something for everyone from home-made tomato ketchup and strawberry jam to whole poached salmon and rump of lamb with little gem and buttered peas. Scattered throughout the book are interesting titbits about some of the classes, with category details and tips such as how to test for the freshest runner beans and the best conditions for growing leaks for budding vegetable gardeners.