I loved watching Lisa’s journey on Masterchef in 2010. Without doubt my favourite winner of all the series, a view shared by Gregg Wallace who at the time said:
Lisa elevates humble food into something beautiful. She’s possibly the best Celebrity MasterChef winner we have ever had
As soon as I heard that Lisa was releasing a recipe book I went to Amazon (other book shops are available) and pre-ordered it. I almost squealed when it arrived this week.
It is the first recipe book that I have ever just sat and read from cover to cover, like a novel. Lisa starts by telling her foodie story from losing her mum to cancer when she was just 16 and taking over all the cooking for her dad and little sister to being crowned Masterchef Champ. An extraordinarily emotional journey.
Lisa has very clear and fond memories of cooking with her mum and wanted to be able to pass those recipes and memories on to her daughter, Billie. I think this is a wonderful idea and it makes me feel guilty that I don’t do more cooking with my own daughters.
The book has wonderful photographs, not just of Lisa mid-recipe, but wonderful finished products and also pictures of Lisa’s family. The montage at the start of Lisa and her sister Victoria with their mum and other relatives is just gorgeous.
The truly great thing about this recipe book, though, is that they are recipes you actually want to try. Well, that I actually want to try. You see, I have a bit of thing about recipe books, I love them, but all too often I look through them and think “yuck” / “not cooking that” / “that’s too complicated” / “I don’t even know what that ingredient is”. We are not the sort of family that sits down to a whole monkfish on a Wednesday night. Lisa’s “Mince 3 ways” though, hello…..
From Rice Krispie Chicken to The Best Fish Pie to Mummy’s Toad in the Hole it all sounds delicious. The book is split into seasons which is a great idea, so you can cook stuff that is in season now, keeping it all fresh and food miles down. There are even recipes for marmalade and Christmas sweets.
I think this book is a triumph and I am going to have to buy a second copy. One for the coffee table and one for the kitchen. The one in the kitchen is going to get very messy.
Or as Gregg Wallace might say “Cook books don’t get much better than this”
Published by Simon and Schuster it is out now.