Amazon.com: Customer Reviews: Plenty: Vibrant Vegetable Recipes from London's Ottolenghi
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Showing 1-9 of 9 reviews(1 star). Show all reviews
on December 12, 2012
I have been an off and on vegetarian for about fifteen years. Recently I moved our family to a 100% vegetarian diet that includes not using a lot of fat because I am concerned about the long term effects of eating a lot of foods that have saturated fats (cheese in particular, but olive oil as well, which is 14% saturated fat). If you are looking for cookbooks that might offer some help in this respect, do not buy this one. The majority of the recipes are loaded with eggs, olive and vegetable oils, cheese, butter, heavy cream and creme fraiche. We are not talking moderate quantities either--the Mushroom Lasagne has eighteen ounces of cheese, thirteen ounces of ricotta cheese, ten tablespoons of butter and one large egg. The Caramelized Garlic Tart uses one tablespoon of olive oil, but nine ounces of goat cheese, two eggs and thirteen tablespoons of creme fraiche and heavy cream.

If Ottolenghi uses olive oil in a recipe, he introduces prodigious quantities of it. The first recipe in the book, "Poached baby vegetables with caper mayonnaise," uses one and one third cups of oil, including one full cup in the poaching liquor. The second recipe in the book, for "Moroccan Carrot Salad," calls for one third cup of olive oil plus more for finishing. There are a some recipes that use two to four tablespoons of olive oil, but they are in a minority.

An annoyed reader wrote to the Guardian newspaper complaining about the amount of fat in the the Broccoli and Gorgonzola Pie and Ottolenghi characterized the complaint as "a condescending attempt by someone who, I suspect, doesn't like food to tell others what to eat". This is a childish reaction to a criticism that probably comes from someone concerned about the health implications of too much saturated fat in a diet. Ottolenghi advances the "general sense of over indulgence" over the last few decades as a reason why people include less meat in their diets, but the recipes in this cookbook are the epitomy of over indulgence. Some of them can be modified to meet a higher standard of healthful cooking, but most are not amenable to that kind of change.

The book is beautifully photographed and has a padded cover, but potential buyers should be aware that it has a particular bent that makes the cookbook less valuable for many of us.
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on September 17, 2011
I love Ottolenghi. I love Nopi. Perfect restaurants in London. However, when I got this book, I was truly disappointed. I tried over 40 recipes, of which only 5 were delicious. I kept trying more and more recipes thinking that it's not be possible, because he is so genius. And in the meanwhile upset family and friends with strange experiments. The book is not like the food currently at his restaurants, so please don't expect it.
44 comments|55 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on September 29, 2014
Although I respect his artistic sense of food, I find the flavors of these dishes to be quite mundane. Also one recipe for cauliflower calls for one and a half teaspoon of saffron! Who does that? Usually more than few threads are overwhelmingly strong. The sweet potato cakes are boring and uninspired Great photographs-mediocre food -another case of over-hyped conformity
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on April 1, 2015
Do not buy this book unless you are a bored, rich housewife. The ingredients in this book are vast, obscure, and expensive. The recipes take way too much time and effort to make. If you want a practical cookbook, look elsewhere
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on August 20, 2013
The pictures are beautiful and the ideas interesting, but unless you have your own restaurant you will probably be able neither to find nor to afford the bizarre spices called for in many of the recipes. In addition, this man doesn't know how to cook. I've tried several of these recipes (dubiously, since the cooking times, styles, and temperatures just looked wrong to me) and they flat-out didn't work. The cover recipe was the worst cooking disaster I've ever had. I'm saying this as someone who is an experienced and commended chef who has successfully followed many a recipe. This book is an expensive and very attractive piece of dross, suitable for a doorstop but not for a cooking reference.
33 comments|19 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on October 9, 2015
I ordered this book for my Kindle and I AM UNHAPPY. i have quite a library of cookbooks (all hardback) and thought I'd try a book on my Kindle. My daughter seems to love using her Ipad for recipes. But this book isn't good for the Kindle. I love thumbing thru a cookbook, enjoying pics and unexpected recipes. Not fun to try and thumb thru a piece of machinery. Advice: buy hardback cookbooks. I am aware of what a wonderful book this is, so am especially sorry that I took a bargain way to buy it. Will just have to fork out more bucks and get a hardback. Ann Christofferson
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on March 12, 2015
Let's srart off by full disclosure, I haven't tried the recipes. Also important to note that I LOVE vegetables and would choose them over meat any day. So why dont I like the book? Its way too contrived. I cant think of one recipe that doesn't call for an exotic ingredient or 3.

It just seemed so unnecessarily difficult. Vegetables have amazing flavor and texture if well prepared. They dont need crovochy from Afghanistan to be delish! ( I made that up)
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on January 5, 2014
This was a brief write up with some history and 2 recipes. Not a cook book. If you want this cookbook then don't buy the Kindle edition.
33 comments|10 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on October 14, 2014
Again...book was great, but the book I received was a second. Very disappointing suppliers!! Which one is honest??
22 comments|One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

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