I was kindly sent a free copy of this book by the publisher Austin Macauley for a review. It is a cookbook for cooking on a budget which is perfect for those of us feeling the pinch on funds after Christmas.
Eating on a budget is something more and more of us are having to do these days. Sometimes it’s hard to find a way to feed a family with good home cooked food without spending too much money. But with this book you can feed a family of four for under £2.50 a meal.
I like this book, though aimed at the UK market with the costing and details of where to get food, the recipes can be adopted by anyone around the world. Inside the book there is a only a quick dedication, a contents and then each page is filled with a simple recipe. There are around 100 recipes in the entire book. There are a variety of different recipes, including vegetarian ones although the majority do contain meat. However as a vegetarian I find it easy to adapt and substitute a wide range of recipes so I can follow most of them in this book.
Each recipe has a very simple ingredient list. There aren’t any fancy herbs, spices or other strange and exotic ingredients which a lot of recipe books often have. Instead they are real and simple ingredients that you can easily buy such as potatoes, sausages, carrots, etc. Each ingredient is listed along with a price, the price it costs in the recipe such as herbs costing 2p for a particular recipe. As well as this, in brackets it lists a cheap shop you can find the ingredient in, such as carrots from Aldi along with the shops price for a bag of them. After the ingredient list there is an overall price of all the ingredients added together. each recipe comes to £2.50 or under which is amazing considering how expensive home cooked food is considered to be these days. Although the list contains specific shops and prices of food in those shops, there’s no reason you can’t get the different ingredients in other shops as long as you’re prepared for the cost to possibly be a little over £2.50.
The recipes themselves are so simple, no complicated instructions or lots of fiddling needed to cook something. In fact some of the recipes are so simple they involve little more than putting all the ingredients into a pot and them serving.
Although most recipes use many of the same ingredients there is a wide variety of different things to make and I’m surprised with just how many new things I’ve had the chance to try, such as ‘Fully Loaded Potato Skins’ which is an interesting recipe I’ve never thought of trying but so easy to make. Each recipe feeds 4 so you can adjust many of them to feed more or less.
Overall I really like this book. There are so many different recipes which are tasty and easy to make and on a budget which is so important to so many of us these days. The only drawback I see in the book is that they aren’t ordered into categories, but if you don’t mind skimming the contents for a minute or two there’s plenty of great stuff to make. A really good book!
In the current economical times of food banks and food poverty, this book is packed full of recipe ideas that are not only tasty but will feed a family of 4 a main meal for £2.50 or under. All the ingredients are itemised to show just how economically a recipe can be put together. With recipes inherited through one family over 3 generations you will find not only traditional, but also international recipes that are simplified to save time but not flavour. Varied recipes which include low fat, kids’ favourites, and vegetarian options – you will find an abundance of ideas to inspire you at mealtimes.