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Ripe: A Cook in the Orchard
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
Nigel Slater is one of my favorite cookbook authors for his ability to write a story that's as interesting to read as the recipes are to cook. There is nothing pretentious or difficult about his food. It is all quite easy to make. I was a bit crestfallen when I saw that Tender had almost no desserts in it, not knowing that Ripe would be almost all desserts.

This is such a beautifully photographed, fantastic collection of recipes covering so many different fruits, that if I had to get a housewarming gift for someone, I would seriously consider this alone (if they loved to bake or had a garden), or both as a set. I think it's impossible to get just one and not want the other.

I am happy to see his apple and zucchini cake in here (originally appeared in Observer Food Monthly I think), and a couple of other recipes I've seen in the paper, so now I can throw those clippings away. These desserts are my Saturday baking staple for our breakfasts during the week.

What I like most about his style of cooking is that it is all quite intuitive, which just derive from his questions of what would he like to eat, and what does he have on hand. I think you start to get a better feel for how to use what's around you in your food, and you start to feel more comfortable about pulling your own meals together without paying attention to recipes or quantities once you use these books. I never make extemporaneous desserts, but many of the ones in here are highly adaptable, so you can use your preferred fruit with similar results. There are even a few no-cook/bake desserts (cheesecake!) in here. Those are always at the top of my list!!

Of particular interest are the background/intro notes on each fruit and the spice/food/taste pairings for each one.

I love this book. Is indeed in my top favorite cookbooks ever.

This book is for anyone who cooks!!!
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28 of 30 people found the following review helpful
on April 15, 2012
After purchasing Tender and being utterly thrilled with its depth and scope, we knew we had to get our hands on Ripe. And it lives up to its predecessor. Thoughtfully written, with a writer's acuity and a cook's ingenuity, Ripe is an essential addition to the cookbook shelf. Not only is it a pleasure to leaf through thanks to vibrant photos and truly solid writing, the recipes themselves are a testament to thoughtful cooking. Unfussy and highly adaptable, Slater's recipes are enjoyable, relaxed, and usually wonderfully simple. As far as I'm concerned, Tender and Ripe should be part of any home cook's library.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
J'adore. Completely. Totally. I am just plain in love. Start with book design - beautiful - lovely paper, beautiful photos, fabulous font. Maybe it's a little unwieldy in the kitchen but I'm forgiving of that. The writing is amazing - heart-achingly nostalgic, mouthwateringly descriptive, and personal. A cookbook you actually want to READ. The recipes - perfection. Although some ingredients might be a challenge to find there is a US edition note to help make subs. A great gift book but please, buy a copy for yourself too (get a copy of Tender while you're at it). One complaint (just to try and temper my gushing) - no melon recipes but to be fair it is subtitled "A Cook in the Orchard". Lots of funky berry recipes plus plums, peaches, apricots, pears, quince, apricots, rhubarb, many many more - just good stuff. Best recipe so far - Goat Cheese Scone to go with Pears. In fact, I think I'll go make one now.
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
on April 15, 2012
Who says the Brits don't know food? His Tender was a beautiful book, and like Tender you can sit with Ripe and go page by page, loving how much he loves food & fruit & life. What an amazing book. Just add this to your collection- Like Tender it will make you think in seasons and await every lushous thing that comes our way!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on July 17, 2012
i have at least a hundred cookbooks but none as beautiful as this book. the pictures are amazing, the ingredients are available. and I am starting with apples and moving forward. The baked apples seems like an easy one, but this book throws in something you might not expect.. It really is hard to explain. I purchased Tender as well and I would say to anyone who loves cookbooks the way I do... grab yourself a cup of tea and enjoy, enjoy, enjoy. it was like taking a mini vacation.
the apricot and raspberry tort was out of this world. amazing.. its the only word i can think of.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on June 17, 2012
I first tried Nigel's recipes after a trip to a friend's in London. Since then, I have tried many and always look to him first when I want to make something new. Amazing combinations, and often easy once you've got the ingredients together. He also writes beautifully and truly loves food. Thanks, Nige! I've only got Delia Smith and four of yours in my cook book collection.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on February 7, 2013
A passionate ballad for fruit - from seed to table. Each 'chapter' is focused on a different fruit - first with a bit of autobiographical exposition about the author's history with the fruit, then how to grow it, what it pairs well with, how to prepare it in a variety of ways. You'll plan a garden in your head by the time you've only read partway through. Beautiful photography and inspired recipes.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on December 13, 2012
The book is absolutely well written and very interesting but many of the ingredients are specialty items that cannot be purchased at your local store. If you are looking for a book to leave out to impress guests this is it. If you are looking for a cookbook stick with Betty.
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on March 28, 2013
I have always been fond of including fruit in my cooking, but lacked guidance and challenges to expand into new dishes. This books helps me on that journey. Nigel Slater writes so well that you can taste the recipes just by reading them. It is both visually and gastronomically pleasing.
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on March 20, 2015
I like the writing, the photography is gorgeous, and it's a nice heavy book with a good hand feel, but I find little in the recipes I can/will actually use. Also, the binding does appear to be holding up too well.
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