The Recipe Collection by Tessa Kiros »
A carefully curated selection of recipes spanning a culinary career
By Laura McKinnon
Tessa Kiros started publishing cookbooks in Australia in 2002, many best-selling. The Recipe Collection is a nostalgic look back over 150 family-friendly recipes lovingly created from countries she has lived in: Italy, Greece, Portugal and South Africa feature. Essentially, The Recipe Collection is a greatest hits edition of her recipes, plus some new ones.
The Recipe Collection is beautifully presented and a decent size. For anyone who likes a solid cookbook that feels like it is giving excellent value for money, this fits the bill. It comes with its own fabric bookmark, but realistically you will probably need more than just one.
The Recipe Collection is divided into ten sections, including bread and breakfast, small bites, soups, salads, pasta, gnocchi and rice, seafood, meat, vegetables and sides, and finally dessert.
There is certainly no lack of variety making the cookbook accessible for those of broad tastes and to those who like something a bit different.
Food photos abound in The Recipe Collection, with most recipes accompanied by beautiful photography of each dish, helping to make each dish mouth-watering and a definite motivator in getting into the kitchen and cooking up a storm. Try the Cinnamon and Cardamom Buns as an impressive snack for when the in-laws come around – it would be hard to disapprove of anything when their mouths are full of gorgeous buns that they know you have lovingly prepared.
As a health conscious parent you might like to give the Mixed Brown Bread a try. Just like Tessa Kiros you can achieve that good parent feeling when you send your children off to school with freshly made, healthy and tasty bread. And once you get back from dropping the kids off at school, get out the butter and jam and make the most of the fresh bread for yourself.
Speaking of kids, there are a lot of recipes suited to them, but none more than the Jam Shortbread; two pieces of shortbread with your favourite jam inside. Perfect for the school lunch box or for creating some short bursts of quiet time throughout the day. The kids will love them.
Other recipes include Prawn Pastries which are fantastic as an appetiser, and Baked Scallops for something different on colder days. There is also a Potato and Cabbage Soup with Chourico that would be perfect for winter nights.
Fried Mozzarella Toasts for days where you just need to feel full (if you are a cheese fan this is the one for you); Spaghetti with Tomato and Scampi for cultured renditions of the famous scene from Lady and the Tramp; Fish Cakes for those who like to use real fish rather than the fingers from the supermarket, and Pecan Butter Biscuits for a delectable sweet treat that you can take anywhere with you.
The list of recipes goes on and on with an enormous amount of variety. Tessa Kiros has delivered. Nothing is so fancy that it is beyond a general cook’s ability to create, but there is enough of a challenge to give a sense of achievement when you have completed a recipe.
This is a well-balanced cookbook that is worth the price of admission. It's one you will keep in a prominent spot and use for your own family and general purpose cooking, but also for recipes to impress those you invite to dinner.
The Recipe Collection by Tessa Kiros is published in Australia by Murdoch Books (Sydney, 2014; hc, 376 pp) and retails in Australia for A$59.95
- Italy - all (IT)
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