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Good Food Sorted by Chris Bavin

Wednesday 6 March 2019
I was sent Chris Bavin's debut cookbook to review, and also asked my friend who isn't an especially keen cook to try a few recipes and tell me what she thought of the book. 

Chris Bavin is an award winning greengrocer turned TV presenter, best known for appearing on Eat Well for Less and Britain's Best Home Cook. He has a young family and is a keen cook, so he knows the challenges of getting healthy food on the table to please hangry children when you're knackered.

Good Food Sorted

The cookbook contains over 100 family friendly recipes, the vast majority of which are accompanied by a photo of the finished dish, and plenty of useful tips and tricks to save money and make cooking quicker and tastier.

There's a 'Feed the Freezer' and 'Love Your Leftovers' tip at the bottom of most of the recipes, as well a 'Flex Your Flavours' tip for alternative ingredients or additions to maximise taste with minimal effort.  

The book is divided up into sections: breakfast, pasta rice, noodles, meat, chicken, fish and shellfish, vegetarian, puddings, snacks, and feasts. It's written in a practical and accessible style with clear instructions and recipes are fairly straight forward.

The beginning of the book has advice on organising your store cupboard, freezer, etc which most families would find useful. There's also double page spreads with useful hints and tips designed to save time and money such as: 10 top tips for batch cooking and freezing, 5 handy herb and spice mixes, 10 ways to freeze flavours, 5 ways to use up fruit, 5 ways to keep ingredients fresh and 10 ingredients to freeze not throw.

The recipes use easy to source and fairly thrifty ingredients. Flicking through the recipes and pricing up the ingredients in my head, about 75% would fit within our family meal budget which is pretty good going for a cookbook that doesn't claim to be aimed at budget conscious cooks.

My friend who isn't a keen cook was able to try half a dozen recipes over two weeks, three on busy week nights. The recipes were all easy to follow, the dishes were tasty, and cooking from scratch didn't stress her out as much as she thought it would. She's even got a couple of meals stashed in the freezer because she made double quantities of the dinners she cooked on the weekend.

Good Food Sorted

I think the book is well written, the recipes are well set out and easy to follow, and the many hints and tips are useful and practical. It would be a good resource for busy families stuck in a cooking rut of making the same recipes on rotation, as well as those just wanting a bit more inspiration and variety. The many tips and hints are sure to save money, and cut down on food waste.

The tag line on the cover is "Save time, cook smart, eat well" and that sums up the book perfectly.  I'd recommend the cookbook to other families who want some tasty and quick meal inspiration, and have already loaned my copy to my friend until Easter so she can try more recipes and get her husband and children to cook a few to give her a rest.

Good Food Sorted by Chris Bavin is released on 7th March and rrp is £18.99, it's currently on offer for £13.99 on Amazon.

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