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Naked Chef Paperback – Jan 1 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Penguin (2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0141042958
  • ISBN-13: 978-0141042954
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 24.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 798 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (57 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #820,771 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Debbie Lee Wesselmann on April 4 2003
Format: Hardcover
Jamie Oliver's first book based on his television series (no, the title does not refer to the chef but instead to his philosophy) is a fine entry in the cookbook market for those who prefer their meals on the plain but flavorful side. Oliver excels in simplicity. His stripped down recipes are easy to follow and don't require a lot of imagination to guess how they will taste. For example, his six recipes for salad dressings fit on two pages; the recipe titles describe exactly what one gets. While Oliver supplies a few recipes that I'll never try (Ravioli of Borage, Stinging Nettles, Marjoram, and Fresh Ricotta) and a few gourmet dishes (Spicy Squash, Basil, and Ricotta Tortellini with Crispy Herbs), most dishes will be familiar to those who dine out at mid-priced restaurants. The emphasis is heavily, though not exclusively, on pasta and Italian flavors. (For ambitious cooks, Oliver supplies clear instructions on how to made pasta at home.) Meat recipes are often plain, without sauces or exotic ingredients; you'll find roast chicken, slow-cooked lamb shanks, and pork chops with thyme, lemon, and pesto. The fish and seafood dishes tend to use off-beat (for Americans) ingredients such as sardines, whole trout, and skate wings, although pan-seared tuna, a staple in restaurants nowadays, makes an appearance. Desserts are uninspired.
The strength of this cookbook is the no-nonsense style and the color plates that accompany the recipes. I recommend this for beginning cooks and those who have simple tastes and are looking for something new. Gourmet cooks, particularly those with a lot of cookbooks, are likely to find themselves bored with the selections.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Prowler on June 20 2001
Format: Hardcover
While the book is a great companion to Oliver's entertaining TV cooking show, the recipes themselves could use a little work. Either he hasn't described the process clearly enough, or the recipes aren't fully formed. A perfect example is the simple roasted chicken. First, you have to figure out exactly what he's asking you to do. Once you get the fresh herbs stuffed into the chicken and pop it into the oven, you're tantalized by the incredible smell. But when the chicken comes out, the flavor is disappointing and even unappealing. Some of the herbs he suggests using leave a nasty, bitter taste. Others simply leave no taste.
The recipes in the book give the experienced cook some interesting starting points to jump from, but I think the mixed results might leave a more inexperienced cook discouraged.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By David R. Stack on April 5 2001
Format: Hardcover
I enjoy watching Jamie Oliver's cooking show, The Naked Chef, on the Food Network so I decided to purchase his cookbook and try the recipes myself.
If you are like me and enjoy reading cookbooks as well as trying the recipes out, this book is for you! It is an interesting and easy read with great pictures. This young man is very personable in his writing style.
I cooked for a party of 6 the Spicy Squash, Basil and Ricotta Tortellini with Spicy Herbs (pg 75) and got rave reviews from my friends. I love fresh pasta and the flavors were subtle yet surprisingly refreshing. I am looking forward to trying other of his pasta recipes.
I am baking the Baked Chocolate Tart and making his Semi-freddo this coming weekend for a dinner party where I have been asked to bring desert. I can't wait to try and taste these two deserts.
I am also looking forward to trying his soups plus the fish and shellfish recipes in the cookbook.
I recommend this cookbook, The Naked Chef. It is well worth the money to try these new and exciting recipes.
Thanks Jamie for your creativity with food and love for cooking!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Tuckerby on April 1 2002
Format: Hardcover
I bought this book after discovering the television show and reading the enthusiastic reviews. The recipes taste great and leave your kitchen smelling heavenly. The instructions are clear, although occasionally, Jamie neglects to define specific terms such as "sweating" vegetables, and often uses imprecise measurements (i.e. "handfuls"). Being petite, my hand almost certainly holds less than his, but this is a minor point. If you don't use fresh herbs already, Jamie will quickly convert you.
Jamie states at one point that the book represents what he likes to cook. Unfortunately, the recipes do not reflect what I like to cook, and given a second chance, I would not buy this book again. The following information is not meant as criticism, but as a guide to help you determine if these recipes are for you.
You will find few stews, casseroles, or meats cooked in a sauce in this collection. Most of the meats are roasted with herbs, and three-quarters of the dishes use red meat (mostly lamb). The seafood section, while offering a variety of fish, contains only two shellfish recipes. The pasta section emphasizes fresh, homemade noodles with light sauces or filled pastas such as ravioli and tortellini. You will not find any recipes for lasagna, cannelloni, or other baked dishes. The grain chapter consists only of risottos and couscous, and the legume section mostly of seasoned beans or lentils meant as side dishes. The desserts consist primarily of steamed puddings, tarts, and an ice cream-like concoction called semifreddo. Alas, no cookies or cakes!
Some of these dishes are too time-consuming or fattening for me to make on a regular basis, despite their deliciousness. Others are simply not what I prefer to eat--I'll take Coq au Vin over herb-roasted chicken any day. Decide for yourself if this book offers the kind of recipes you want.
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