Love Food, Can't Cook?

Do you ever wish you were that person who just peers into the fridge, takes a random selection of ingredients, and dreams up a delicious supper? Do you panic when forced to stray off-recipe?



Lara DePetrillo and Caroline Eastman-Bridges used to. Friends since the age of 17 who found themselves separated by the Atlantic, they reconnected in February 2007 by starting the hit food blog cookbad.blogspot.com. Each cooked a different recipe for a year, and as their understanding and love of food developed, so too did their long-distance friendship.

Lara knew she had to wean herself off a lifelong takeaway habit when she found herself a mother with a young family to feed. Before her foray into food she worked in publishing and media. She was born in the US and now lives in the UK.



Caroline studied painting before obtaining a master’s degree in Interactive New Media from New York University. Upon becoming a mother she decided to conquer new creative territory - cookery. She lives in Venice, California and is now a private chef and vegan baker.


Their collaboration has also produced Love Food, Can’t Cook?, a how-to manual for the kitchen-shy foodie. Instead of elaborate recipes with long lists of ingredients, they break down cookery into simple steps, giving readers the freedom to create and customise their own meals.

DID YOU KNOW...

  • Purple carrots used to be the norm; the orange ones were specially bred to match the colours of the Dutch royal family?


  • Chickens are considered to be the closest living relative to Tyrannosaurus Rex?

  • In the American state of Kansas, it used to be against the law to serve ice cream on cherry pie?

Lara DePetrillo and Caroline Eastman-Bridges know all this – and much more. For example, they know all the different ways you can make stock, and how to stop sauces separating. They know which flowers are edible. And that it makes it easier to roll out dough if you put it between two sheets of clingfilm.



They have even drawn up a family tree of the Derivations of the 5 Mother Sauces (White sauce, Velouté, Espagnole, Tomato Sauce and Hollandaise.) Each chapter – Stocks and Sauces, Vegetables and Fruit, Pulses, Poultry, Meat and so on – contains clear step-by-step guidance, along with recommended flavours to accompany different foods.

Courtesy of Piatkus, I am delighted to have the opportunity to share with you, two specially selected recipes from Love Food, Can't Cook? with the Recipes2Share community:

Chimichurri

Makes about 240ml

From Argentina, this is a fresh and spicy topping or marinade for meats.

  • 1 bunch of flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • 100ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon hot pepper flakes
  • 3 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 45ml red wine vinegar or fresh lemon juice
  • ground black pepper


Mix all the ingredients together, let it so the flavours marry for 30 minutes then spoon it over meat or chicken.


Dead Easy Ice Cream
Makes about 1 litre

  • 175g sugar
  • 100ml milk
  • 450ml double or whipping cream (or yoghurt if you want to make frozen yoghurt)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 225 – 325g of anything else (flavouring) you feel like adding


In a saucepan combine the sugar, milk and cream, put it on a high heat and keep stirring until bubbes form at the edge. Turn down the heat. Meanwhile whick the eggs in a bowl. Add half the cream mixture to the eggs, stir well, then add the eggs to the rest of the cream in hte saucepan and, over a medium heat, stir constantly until the mixture coats the back of a metal spoon. Add anything else you want at this point, excluding nuts and chocolate chunks. Let the mixture cool in the fridge for a few hours then pour into an ice-cream maker. Now add chocolate chips or nuts and follow the ice-cream maker's instructions. To make a chocolate-based ice cream adding 110g cocoa powder to the milk and cream mixture at the beginning.

Some lovely flavour combinations
:

chocolate and chillies; carrot and cardamom; Greek yoghurt; lavender and honey; avcacado and lime; Guinness and brownies (with optional walnuts).

Love Food, Can't Cook?

Simple recipes for everyone who loves food but doesn't know how to make it

by Lara DePetrillo & Caroline Eastman-Bridges

Published by Piatkus

£7.99 Paperback

‘A compact, invaluable repository of practical know-how’
DAILY MAIL

‘A great gift idea for students – or anyone looking to impress hungry dinner guests.’
WAITROSE FOOD ILLUSTRATED

‘Their demystifying approach is supremely reassuring to the novice cook’
STAR MAGAZINE

click below for printable versions of recipes:

Chimichurri

Dead Easy Ice Cream