Are you looking for gift ideas for the home cooks in your life? How about a cookbook?
I recently received a copy of the new The Dirty Apron Cookbook, and I thought I’d share my thoughts just in time for your holiday shopping.
As you probably know, The Dirty Apron Cooking School is one of Vancouver’s popular and favourite place for amateur cooks to unleash their inner chefs. Owned by former Chambar Sous Chef David Robertson and his wife, Sara, The Dirty Apron offers a variety of hands-on cooking classes. The new cookbook, published in October, caters to both beginners and more experienced cooks who are looking for delicious menus and wanting to build more confidence in the kitchen. In addition to recipes of different levels of difficulty, you will also find cooking tips and tricks such as a list of basic ingredients for your pantry, tips for plating and garnishing, making stocks and brines, and a temperature chart for cooking meats.
Not spending enough time in the kitchen, I thought we would be the perfect testers, to see how easy it is to use this cookbook. So, we tried a few recipes, including:
The Dirty Apron Scones
Lemon Panna Cotta
As you can see from the pictures above, following the recipes for the first time gave us some great results. The recipes were quite easy to follow and there wasn’t too much guessing in between steps. And the dishes turned out delicious!
Many dishes covered in this cookbook can be found at high-end restaurants, e.g. crepe, gnocchi, halibut, duck breast, souffle, etc., but Chef Robertson makes it easy for home cooks to tackle. Some recipes ask for ingredients that may not be readily available at most homes, but they can be easily found at local grocery stores so it wouldn’t be difficult to shop for them when you need them.
The cookbook also has a lot of full-page, beautiful, mouth-watering images. Oh and did I tell you Vikram Vij wrote the Foreword?
Overall, for under $30, I thought this would make a great holiday gift for someone who enjoys cooking or someone who wants to sharpen his/her cooking skills. Recipes found in this cookbook will also be perfect for your next party! How about a gift for yourself this Christmas?