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Friday, 23 September 2011

Pies: Savoury and Sweet (The Australian Women's Weekly)

Pies: Savoury & Sweet - Australian Women's Weekly Standard

A piping hot pie straight from the oven is hard to resist. More than any other food, pies represent home cooking at its finest. From the rich buttery crust to the deeply satisfying filling, pies are the perfect way to show love to family and friends. This book contains recipes for savoury and sweet pies such as creamy fish pie, a rich saucy steak pie and a crispy apple pie. There are also tips on making, using and buying pastry, making the process of baking at home as easy as pie.

This is the second recipe book from The Australian Women's Weekly, the first being Mince It and I was looking forward to seeing if all their books are to the same high standard in content and ideas as this, and I was not disappointed.

As the title suggests the book contains recipes for .... pies! Lots of pies, both sweet and savoury. There are five chapters of recipes: poultry; seafood;meat; vegetable; and sweet pies and tarts. The first chapter is all about pastry - the chapter is only a few pages long but contains lots of useful and important advice and tips about how to make the perfect basic shortcrust pastry step by step.

The subsequent chapters are full of bright, appetising looking photographs of finished dishes which accompany lots of recipes. There are recipes which will be suitable for many occasions and feature both traditional and modern dishes. The book is from Australia and therefore some recipes may have some Australian twists e.g. cottage pie including both a pastry base and potato topping. I noted in my previous book review, Mince It, that the book contained ingredients more commonly available in Australia but I did not find this within this book. There are many gorgeous sounding recipes which I am wanting to try, especially white chocolate, lime and ginger mousse tart and old fashioned lamb and celeriac pie.

The recipes all start with a comprehensive and complete ingredients list. The recipe is broken down into easy steps, with the recipe separated for each component. The one thing that I really like about this book is that for each recipe there are estimated preparation and cooking times, average servings and, most importantly in my eyes, the nutritional count per servings (this includes total fat; saturated fat; calories; carbohydrates; protein and fibre per serving). The pages also contain many tips for the recipes.

The inside of the front and back covers and added flaps also have some great information. There is a a section on decorating pastry, including trimming pastry and how to edge pies, along with a pictorial guide to some of the ingredients used within the recipes - each ingredient included has a brief description, possible other names and any other useful tips. A full conversion chart is also included for oven temperatures, liquid measures, length measures and dry measures for metric and imperial measurements.

I would recommend this book as a great addition to any kitchen library - plenty of ideas of how to use up those leftovers or to create a meal for any occasion.

Thank you to Octopus Publishing for sending me the book to review.

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