FOOD & DRINK / MY FAVOURITE COOKBOOKS
I'm writing this on Sunday 4th June and before I get into discussing something as trivial as cookbooks (in comparison), I just wanted to start with a short snippet acknowledging the heartbreaking incident that occurred in London last night. This isn't a platform where I feel overly confident sharing my thoughts and opinions on religion, politics, terrorism and the like but I just wanted to send my thoughts and love to those affected by the attacks. As hard as it is to not, we cannot let fear fester and we cannot stop living and so here I am, continuing to share my ramblings with you...
I've been in a bit of a cooking rut recently but I've found that all it takes is a flick through some of my favourite cookbooks and a trip to good ol' M&S to ignite that spark once again. I lead a pretty balanced lifestyle but I'm not really sure what's been happening recently... I seem to have formed a very strong affection toward donuts. Donuts of any kind. It's baaaaaaad - but oh so good. Anyway, after weeks (months) of not really worrying too much and after the mountains of stodgy food – mmmm my favourite – I've actually been really craving fresh and healthy meals. Especially now it's getting pretty damn hot (for us) in London.
As you'll probably know, I'm a sucker for a meal out and love trying new cuisines and restaurants but a lot of you will also know that I'm also a bit of a grandma so I can't eat out every single night because that just wouldn't allow for my 9pm bedtime. I'm only partly joking haha. That means that I have to bung on my apron - I don't actually do this - and pray that my domestic goddess skills serve me well.
I have a tonne of cookbooks, some in actual book form and also a fair few on my kindle, but there are a few that are tried and tested and whenever I’m not feeling like trawling through my library, these are my four favourite healthy-ish picks that I reach for…
All of them feature recipes so easy to make that you’re fooled into thinking that you’re the next Delia by the time it comes to serving. Oh also, the pictures are just insanely beautiful. Prepare to salivate…
Deliciously Ella with Friends by Ella Woodward
I love all of the Deliciously Ella's books and turn to them frequently when I'm struggling to find a recipe. However, Deliciously Ella with Friends is probably my favourite thus far because it has some serious show stopping recipes for when you really want to impress. It’s not restrictive in anyway and covers everything from breakfast to lunch and dinner to dessert. In regards to the latter, Ella really knows how to do the sweet stuff but in a healthier way - there is a lot of baking and snacking covered in this book and as a massive sweet tooth, this makes it VERY appealing to me. I've actually done a recipe from Deliciously Ella with Friends before on the blog so you can check that out here.
My favourite recipe: Blueberry Pancake Stack
Spoon by Annie Morris & Jonny Shimmin
Breakfast and brunch are without a doubt my favourite meal(s) of the day. I could have avocado on toast all day every day, so of course a book dedicated to solely breakfast bowls - and the like - just had to feature in here. I actually picked up Spoon on a whim and I'm really glad I did because its packed full of delicious, wholesome recipes. From savoury to sweet as well as spreads to smoothies, this book covers it all. I also like that is features some really unusual recipes that I just never would've thought of before so definitely helps to get out of a breakfast rut.
My favourite recipe: Dave's Incredible Beans
Ready, Steady, Glow by Madeleine Shaw
I feel like this is one of my favourite all rounders. I’m a big fan of Madeleine’s first book and her second Ready, Steady, Glow is equally as good. It’s split into sections so it’s easy to find the quicker recipes to rustle up on weekdays and then the ones that require a bit more love and time which suit more for the weekends or dinner parties. Everything is fresh, there aren't too many fancy ingredients that I can't pronounce to source and I find a lot of the recipes work well as leftovers for the next day’s lunch. Winner.
My favourite recipe: Chicken Kebabs with Cashew Satay
Eat Smart by Niomi Smart
I'm in no way shape or form a vegan but can definitely see why people would turn to that lifestyle and I won't lie, despite the dairy and meat, all of the recipes featured in Eat Smart definitely make my stomach grumble whenever I have a flick through. There's a wide range of recipes and she covers everything from breakfast to baking. It's a great one if you're looking to introduce some more plant based recipes into your diet. I've actually done a recipe from Eat Smart before on the blog so you can check that out here.
My favourite recipe: Squashetti & 'Meatballs'