Sunday, 25 November 2012

Living over the Shop - Book Review

A bit ago I was sent a cookbook to review - Living over the Shop by Stephen Doherty. The shop referred to in the title is every cooks favourite - Lakeland, namely the flagship Windermere branch back in my home county of Cumbria.

Lakeland is an absolute bain on my life, I cannot resist wandering in and buying some random kitchen utensil/gadget/tray etc.... I have quite a few items from that shop and all of it is of excellent quality, reasonably priced and lasts an age. So I was quite pleased to find out that this book was from the restaurant at the Windermere store.
Stephen Doherty is the former 3 Michelin star chef currently running the restaurant with a background most chefs would kill for, namely working with the legendary Roux brothers at Le Gavroche.

The book
The book is split into two parts. the first part is about Stephen's life under the Roux's and afterwards running pubs before finally arriving at Lakeland. There is also an excellent bit dedicated to Cumbria's finest producers, some I already know and others I need to track down. This bit of the book might be uniteresting to some but as the Roux brothers are my idols, It was nice to get an insight from another point of view. The producers bit I enjoyed also, more books should have this, allowing people to get quality ingredients straight from the source.
The second part of the book is all about the recipes

The recipes
There are 80 recipes in total ranging from simple basic food that you would expect in a store restaurant, jacket potatoes, sausage and mash but as well as these they cater for the more adventurous; Souffle Suissesse for example, a Gavroche classic. It also consists of variety of 'basic' recipes such as various sauces, chutneys and preserves. The baking section is also well stocked with fondants, chocolate stout cake and honey and whisky creme brulee. There are a lot of recipes based around salmon in various states: rilletes, cured, roasted etc.. which could put some non salmon lovers off but as there is a lot of salmon available in the Lakes, its not that surprising.

I decided to try out a couple of recipes;
Shallot and Goats Cheese Tart Tatin
Honey Madelines

Both recipes were simple to follow, did not consist of a wide range of impossible to get ingredients and both as you see came out excellent, the honey madelines were lighter than air.

Overall a good book, an interesting behind the scenes look at Le Gavroche and Lakeland accompanying some excellent recipes that most people would have no problem making and showing off with.

The book was sent to me free of charge with the intention to review, all opinions above are my own and I was not asked to give a good review or told which recipes to cook.

1 comment:

  1. I like the look of that tarte tatin - yum. And your madeleines are so pretty. Sounds a fairly interesting book too.