“Prepped! Gorgeous Food without the Slog" by Vanessa Kimbell ~ a Review

~  Menu  ~


Potted Ham

Nubbly Toast

White Wine Spritzer


I had ridiculously small amount of ham left yesterday are feeding my real man so decided to try potting it in an equally small pot.  It’s an easy thing to do and perks up the ham no end! 


Potted Ham


~   Weigh the piece of leftover ham.Shred your leftover ham and weigh it.
~   Gently melt about half as much weight of butter and leave to cool.
~   Shred or finely chop the ham and mix it with other ingredients of your choice (I used parsley, smoked black pepper, and a bit of the old Maldon sea salt.
~   The solids I the butter will by now have sunk to the bottom of the pan so pour off the clear butter and throw away the sediment.
~   Stir most of the clear butter into the ham mixture and press into a small pot. 
~   Pour the rest of the clear butter on top and chill.

This made a good lunch with toasted Vicky’s Bread but to be frank I wish I’d had a gherkin.  You know how it is!

Maldon Sea Salt Crystal (not actual size!)

“Prepped! ~ Gorgeous Food without the Slog; a Multi-tasking Masterpiece for Time-Short Foodies” by Vanessa Kimbell

… which I have just read and which resonates with me, so to speak.  I am quite keen on making useful storecupboard items which I can then use to quickly enhance all sorts of dishes (for proof see Roasted Garlic, Raspberry Vinegar  and Bacon Salt to name just three) and so, it seems, is Vanessa Kimbell. 


The “key recipes” in “Prepped” are a collection of flavoured sugars and syrups but this in no way limits the scope of the book; elderflower syrup for instance is used not only in desserts and cocktails but also in salad dressing and with trout, chlli and beetroot, chocolate is paired with beef and used in Savoury Chocolate Biscuits.  There is lots of inspiration here.  


The book is divided into 11 chapters each dedicated to a single ingredient but not predictable ones: elderflower, rhubarb, lavender, lemon, vanilla, tomato, plum, caraway, cardamom, orange & clove and (don’t worry) chocolate.   The recipes flow and interlock so that her recipe for Plum Chutney contains Vanilla Vinegar (which, incidentally I shall be making asap) or a double batch of a recipe is made to create two entirely different dishes.  This is very much how I cook although usually my leftovers are unplanned.  There is a lot of substituting, linking and cross referencing going on which is very useful


Vanessa Kimbell’s style is friendly and accessible and the photography by Vanessa herself together with Brian Dunstone and Tony Hardacre is wonderful. 

The book is a lovely bright pink hardback published by Spring Hill Books in May of last year (ISBN-10: 1905862563 and ISBN-13: 978-1905862566). 

Get yourself a copy, why don’t you, it’s brill!


Pin It!

1 comment:

Choclette said...

I've been wanting a copy of this for ages - keep hoping someone will give me one! Nice review.