Perfect Too by Felicity Cloake

If you know Felicity Cloake’s ‘How to Make the Perfect…’ column in The Guardian, then you’ll know more or less what to expect with this book, Perfect Too, the follow up to her first book, Perfect: 68 Essential Recipes for Every Cook’s Repertoire. We love the column, and for those that don’t know it, she does this clever thing of gathering together various recipes written by renowned cooks, food writers or chefs, then tests them out all out, dissecting the best bits from each to arrive at the ultimate set of instructions. So the only reason we didn’t get Cloake’s first Perfect book, was because we thought it might be somewhat redundant on our shelves, as we often clipped her columns from the paper or looked up her fail-safe recipes on-line. We were wrong. What’s great about Perfect Too (with its no less than 92 ‘Essential Recipes’) is having so many really good, really well tested recipes all in one place – and we’re talking classic (though not old fashioned) dishes that you want and need to have in your arsenal, from Barbecue Ribs and Chicken Soup to Pad Thai and Panzanella. What’s also great about it, is Cloake’s range. She cooks how must of us cook, rather than how most recipe books would have us do it, endlessly shopping and prepping, so there are recipes for incredibly simple things like Egg Fried Rice and a Croque Monsieur, next to more time consuming dishes such as Steak and Kidney Pudding or Carrot Cake, with just the odd pull-out-all-the-stops thing (Beef Wellington, Tarte au Citron). All in all it’s a lovely book that reminds you of things you want to eat and then explains how to cook them perfectly. Cloake writes well, and each recipe introduction includes the right amount of information about the origins or history of a dish. 

Perfect Too by Felicity Cloake
£19 or £12.70 on Amazon
— Daisy
8th April 2014