This is Laura Calder’s third book, which is a pleasant change from her first two books. Not that I have anything against them! The recipes are a mix of her own, and favourites among her various foodie friends. It’s not limited to French cuisine, and consists of suggested 3-course menus, with variations for courses.
There is a wide range of menus, from tried-and-true comforts (such as chicken pot pie), to party food (and drinks) ideas, to an Indian-inspired meal (complete with curries and sides). There is, of course, a French menu, but what I like best is the range of food, particularly desserts. She’s changed somewhat from her first book, in which she didn’t seem overly keen on desserts (preferring a cheese course), and can just pick up something from the corner patisserie (she lived in Paris at the time), to including a small chapter in her latest book just for cakes.
While I haven’t made many of the recipes yet (actually, just one so far), another big difference between this book and the previous two is the inclusion of some dishes that take longer to prepare (but don’t seem to be off-puttingly difficult), such as 3-hour meatballs, and roasting a chicken for making the chicken pot pie. This is a book for serious foodies, who are prepared to devote more than say 30 min to throw together a meal. Of course, you can pick and choose the quicker dishes, but I imagine the others would be worth trying out (when time and inclination allows), like making your own preserved ginger to add to your apple pie. After all, why else would they be included in her book if they weren’t worth the effort? 🙂