Wednesday 4 September 2013

Review: The Hungry Student Cookbook Collection

Every year, thousands of students fly the nest to take up a place at University, the great majority having little more culinary talent than being able to boil an egg, or heat spaghetti hoops in a pan  Many parents may be concerned about their children eating a healthy, balanced diet during their University career, whilst desperately hoping that they don’t end up surviving on either the typical student diet of economy brand tinned foods, or going down the expensive takeaways route.

Enter a refreshing revelation to the Student Cook-book Market....“The Hungry Student Cookbook” series. The series includes three different titles – “The Hungry Student Cookbook” "The Hungry Student Easy Baking” and “The Hungry Student Vegetarian Cookbook”. Having recipe-tested some of the recipes myself for these books in their production stages, I can safely say that these recipes really are delicious, wholesome, and foolproof. Best of all, there is a whole title dedicated to Vegetarian cooking, rather than vegetarian recipes being an after-thought, as you may find in many other budget cook books. These books make a great housewarming present for either the complete novice or the more-practiced chef. Packed with recipes which can be made using budget-friendly ingredients, they are a must-have on the reading list for uni.

The Hungry Student Cookbook
The book includes some great tips for purchasing store-cupboard basics, and watching your own budget,  it also includes tips on hygiene, cooking basics, and safe storage of food. Sections include Pasta, Stir-Fries, Soups, Stews, Curries, Easy Dinners, Feeding Friends, and the aptly named “The Morning After”.  My favourite section has to be the “In Bread and On Toast” section. Having been in that situation where you may have bread, but not much else in the place, this section offers some fantastic suggestions for tasty meals featuring bread as the main ingredient including Croqoue Madame, Garlic, Mushroom, Avocado and Mozzarella Wrap, and Goats Cheese Olive and Spinach Panini.

The Hungry Student Vegetarian Cookbook
This book features many similarities to it’s carnivorous counterpart – with sections on food basics, store cupboard essentials, kitchen hygiene and cooking and food storage basics. There is also a great section on “keeping it veggie” to help vegetarians know what to look out for at the supermarket if they are not used to navigating ingredients. The book also contains the same sections as the non-veggie version, but the recipes are replaced with fantastic Vegetarian alternatives. Even if a student is not vegetarian, it is typically cheaper to eat vegetarian food, and you want to hope students won't be eating meat and fish every night, so this book is a definite must have.

The Hungry Student Easy Baking
Guaranteed to wow new friends, or old friends, and family when they come to visit, this guide to Baking will leave you looking like a budding contestant for the Great British Bake Off, and even guarantee some serious extra curricular charity fundraising with all of the delicious treats you would be able to create. The book includes a list of key baking ingredients and explains the basics of baking to get you started. With healthier options such as Pumpkin and Orange Muffins, classic dishes such as Peach-Upside Down Cake, or the more adventurous Margarita Cupcakes, you are sure to find something to bake for every occasion.  The book features Small Bakes, Big Cakes, Loaf Cakes, Cookies, Tray Bakes, Breakfast Baking, Easy Breads, and Baked Desserts.

The books also include equipment lists, much of which can be bought cheaply at the local supermarket to equip your student kitchen, or perhaps as a leaving present the family could club together to create an essential kitchen kit.

I absolutely love this really great set of cook books. Although predominantly targeted at students, they are ideal for anyone who wants to eat healthily on a budget, especially if they don’t have much cooking experience and want some simple, delicious, healthy recipes to follow. I would definitely recommend buying these books. I love the style of the author, the no-nonsense ingredients used which are simple to source at the supermarket, and the fuss-free, easy-to-follow recipes which use simple techniques to create great tasting foods.

The gap in the market has definitely been filled by this fantastic series. As the book suggests, don’t leave home without it!

I would even go so far as to say, don’t enter the kitchen without it!

Disclosure: Cookbooks received in consideration for review

1 comment :

  1. Thank you so much for this lovely review, Clare. I'm so pleased you have been enjoying the books and hope you continue to do so for many years to come!



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