London, United Kingdom (PressExposure) July 26, 2008 -- "OK, you've now got a kitchen - but what can you do with it?". That's where Martin James started to explain - since he was at university - to his fellow-students or flatmates how to cook.
As everyone he met and cooked for was asking for his recipes - last his sons when leaving to house off to University - he thought to put them together and write a practical and easy-to-use cookery book. "As members of the household moved away - says James - they asked for copies of the recipes that made up the majority of our meals. I wrote out about 50 or so, made a few photocopies of the set, and handed them round. Over the following 20 years, this collection became the basis of our everyday meals as a family. When our two children left home to go to university they asked for a collection of the "family recipes", so I dug out the old set, tidied it up a bit, added a few more regulars that had appeared over the intervening years, and made some more copies (for them and for some of their friends)."
The book is really easy, designed for who is stepping in a kitchen for the first time. The variety of food described in it, make it a real, proper cookery book that should not be missing in any kitchen.
Surprisingly, not only starters, main courses and desserts recipes are described but also an astonishingly easy wholemeal bread that - the author confesses - he is preparing for his family every day.
This is not a great chef's book, but a cook book coming from a British house, written by someone who enjoys cooking and who can do that pretty well. The problem with many cookery books is that there is always a secret lying behind. Not for this one; no secret and no previous experience needed. Martin James' kitchen is open.