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Cooking for Friends Hardcover – October 13, 2009

4.2 out of 5 stars 39 customer reviews

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Frequently Bought Together

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  • Gordon Ramsay's Home Cooking: Everything You Need to Know to Make Fabulous Food
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Book Description

"As a chef, I work at a thousand miles an hour, but when I'm at home, I want to slow down."

way from the high-octane energy of the professional kitchen, Gordon Ramsay makes meals at home that are more relaxed, where cooking is fun and everyone gets involved in preparing food for family and friends. The way Gordon cooks here embodies his strongly held views: use in-season, fresh ingredients at their peak; support local producers and farmers' markets whenever possible; and celebrate the food culture and its many influences.

And while Gordon loves to celebrate traditional food, he proves that it doesn't have to be boring, bland, or uninventive. Cooking for Friends is full of Gordon's best-loved versions of classic dishes—try a slow-cooked dish like Honey Roast Ham or Corn-Fed Chicken Legs with Braised Peas and Onions, or invite people around for a Sunday lunch of Roast Rib-Eye with Caramelized Shallot and Red Wine Gravy. Cook the ultimate in comfort food, Shepherd's Pie with Branston Pickle or Bakewell Tart, and get the kids involved in making Farfalle with Bacon, Peas, and Sage or Grilled Vegetable Lasagne.

Cooking for Friends contains more than one hundred of Gordon's favorite recipes that he loves to cook and eat with friends and family—uncomplicated recipes but all with Gordon's remarkable feeling for flavor and his extraordinary technical know-how.

Sample Recipes from Cooking for Friends


Smoked Haddock

Mixed Berry Tartlets

Review

“New York Times Top Holiday Cookbooks of 2009” (New York Times)

“Detroit News 5 Best Books for Cooks” (Detroit News)
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow Cookbooks; 1 edition (October 13, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 006143504X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061435041
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 1.1 x 9.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #563,316 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Esther Schindler TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 16, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I've watched Gordon Ramsay on several of his TV shows, particularly on BBC America. He can have Attitude -- oh boy can he! But he also demonstrates a passion for cooking, and his perfectionism very obviously comes from his desire to do things right. That inspired me to pick up his most recent cookbook, Cooking for Friends -- and I'm very glad I did.

Ramsay's cookbook doesn't fall into an easy classification. This isn't special-occasion cooking for impressing the boss (though several recipes would qualify) nor is it exactly family cooking (though again, several recipes fit into that category). It certainly isn't "30 minute meals" as some recipes require quite a bit of time; yet at least a few of the meals are simple enough for a weeknight dinner. I'd have to call this collection, "Recipes that Ramsay likes to make and his friends and family like to eat." Based on my experimentation, so far, I'd have to say that I LIKE that category.

Chapters are devoted to soups; pasta and grains; fish and shellfish; meat and poultry; savory pies and tarts; vegetables and salads; desserts and ices; chocolate and coffee; and basics (chicken stock, etc.). Around half have photos; that matters to some people. About 50 pages of the 260-page book are devoted to desserts and after-dinner treats -- a plus for some people, a detriment to others.

So far, I've made two dishes, both of which were outstanding. As Ramsay describes it, his pork tenderloin stronganoff is "a lovely, unfussy dish to make for supper," served over buttered pasta. It took an hour start-to-finish in the kitchen, with ingredients I mostly had in the house. My husband practically licked the plate. Ramsay's duck breasts with port and cherry sauce created an awesome sauce. (The flub was my fault.
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Format: Hardcover
Perhaps most famous in the U.S. as the host of "Hell's Kitchen," British chef and restaurant entrepreneur Gordon Ramsay shares his cooking expertise in his new book "Cooking for Friends." The book itself is filled with quality photos and split into nine sections: Hot and Cold Soups, Pasta and Grains, Fish and Shellfish, Meat and Poultry, Savory Pies and Tarts, Vegetables and Salads, Desserts and Ices, Chocolate and Coffee, as well as Basics. The recipes themselves are full of European flavor, which is not surprising since Ramsay is from the U.K. Each section starts off with a brief introduction by Ramsay, as well as a listing of all the recipes in this section. Through the introductions, we learn that Ramsay's soups recipes were influenced by his experience with the New England clam chowder, his love for pasta stems from the time he was trained as a chef in Sicily and Sardinia, while his creativity with chocolate dates back to his time working in Paris. Other food sections are influenced by Ramsay's lifestyle--such as the weekly pies his mother baked when he was a child or his wife's Tana's wish to have their children enjoy a rich vegetarian diet. The recipes themselves are unique, with many quite challenging while others fit for beginners. Some of my favorite recipes included lemon meringue pie, grilled vegetable lasagna, crayfish chowder, dark chocolate marquise, and wild mushroom barley risotto. The end of this book has an index structured by ingredients, which I found to be another helpful aspect of this book. So, for example if I want to cook something with bacon, I could look it up in the index and find the page numbers for the recipes that include this ingredient. Same for other ingredients like walnuts, cherries, cheese, celery, etc. Last but not least, this colorful book--embedded with not only images of the recipes but also Ramsay's family gatherings, looks like it would look good on a coffee table or make a great gift for any food lover.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I love the idea of using Godron Ramsey recipes in real life. But here is the big issue with the book:
the recipes are so complex and call for outrageous amount of ingredients. If you are not a professional cook and do not cook on a regular basis - you will be lost.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I bought and immediately returned this eBook. There is NO recipe index, and the clickable table of contents just includes general categories such as meats/basics/deserts etc. In order to find out what recipes are included in this book, I had to swipe through a ridiculous amount of pages, including the same damn picture of Gordon Ramsay (which was fine the first 3 times it showed up, but it got a little redundant by the 5th and 6th). Also, there are random pictures that accompany some recipes- but here's the fun part: sometimes they show up on a page before or after the recipe and so it becomes up to you to figure out which photo matches which recipe.

I want to love this book, and I'm sure the printed copy is gorgeous and delicious. However, this eBook is formatted worse than some of those 14 page self-published atrocities. I wish Chef Ramsey would curse out whoever it was that put this book into digital form.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have always loved Gordon Ramsay on television. I have not always felt his cookbooks translate well to American cooking. This one does though. I not only loved the recipes and the organization of the book (by course type and protein type mostly) but the photos and the commentary are also great. The book pulled me in from the cover and kept me enraptured all the way to the index. Duck with Port wine and cherry sauce, Pear Frangipane are both on my immediate must try list. Casual enough for everyday cooking and elegant enough for any special occasion, this is going to be my go to Gordon Ramsay cookbook. One caveat: make sure you read the cook's notes in the beginning. If you don't have a convection oven, all temperatures should be set 25 degrees higher than the recipe calls for.
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