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Simon Hopkinson's "Roast Chicken and Other Stories"

Has any one cooked from this book? Two wonderful discussions of it in the NYT Sunday edition make me want to run out and buy it - or put it on my Christmas list.

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/02/mag...

There are two recipes in it - Roast Leg of Lamb with Anchovy, Garlic and Rosemary and Petit Pot au Chocolat.

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/02/boo... - also discusses it, and other English cookbooks.

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  1. Here is another thing on the book, an excerpt, from a couple of weeks ago.

    http://www.culinate.com/read/book_exc...

    It also has a couple more recipes, and there were even a couple copies given away just two weeks ago.

    4 Replies
    1. re: madouglas

      Thanks! I've ordered it from my local bookstore, and am having my husband bring me some of his other books from London this week.

      1. re: MMRuth

        I would love to hear what you think about it when you get it. It seems to be a very love or hate book, nothing in between. I am curious to know if anyone can tell me why this is.

          1. re: MMRuth

            My copy came in on Friday and I've had fun perusing it - I love the way it's organized by ingredient - cream, brains, tripe, chocolate, etc.

            I think I may try the roast chicken tonight for my husband's return from London - he loves roast chicken - along with the roast potatoes.

            Looking forward to reading the other two of his books currently over the Atlantic!

    2. MMRuth, I was going to say, don't wait until Christmas but it look slike you may have decided not to! I bought my copy in 1994 when it first came out over here (he used to be the food writer in the newspaper I read - it's now Mark Hix). It's a series of straighforward recipes that are really tasty.

      1. I got it as a freebie at the office. An early Christmas present. I'm not sure what to make first.

        4 Replies
        1. re: NYCkaren

          I thought some of the eggplant dishes looked interesting, as did the Le Grand Aioli (w/ Cod) and some of the lamb dishes.

          1. re: NYCkaren

            I got a copy a couple of days ago and have begun reading it cover to cover. I think this is the book that will finally get me to cook offal. I cook liver, but have always been intimidated by brains, tripe, kidneys, and sweetbreads (which I love). This books is just what I needed to get me over it.

            1. re: JoanN

              I was thinking the exact same thing. I have cooked sweetbreads for my husband, but have not been much of an offal eater myself.

              1. re: JoanN

                I agree, Joan! Now if I could only find someone else to eat the stuff. My mother is going to be visiting me for the holidays and she won't even eat chicken livers. And I love them. It bums me out. I won't even ask her about sweetbreads. The only person I normally am cooking for is my 9-year-old daughter and I'm lucky if I can get her to eat a pork chop.

            2. After reading last week's NYT I put it immediately on my Christmas wish list. I look forward to hearing how your cooking goes from it.

              8 Replies
              1. re: LulusMom

                My husband tried to order it for me for Christmas yesterday and was told it is back ordered until February or March due to overwhelming demand! Darn, was looking forward to cooking from it!

                1. re: emilief

                  My corner bookstore, aptly called The Corner Bookstore (Manhattan), had to order it for me - I think I called on Monday - but it came in in about four days, so he might want to try some others stores, FWIW.

                  Edit - He might also try http://www.kitchenartsandletters.com/ - they may have stocked up.

                  1. re: emilief

                    I ordered it twice from Amazon and each time I got an e-mail about two days later saying, sorry, out of stock. But I found it at a Borders on a strip mall near my mother's house in New Jersey. Your husband may well be able to find it at a store that hasn't sold out of it yet--especially if that store is in a area, unlike Manhattan, that doesn't necessarily get a lot of traffic from cookbook aficionados.

                    1. re: JoanN

                      I bought 5 copies (gifts and 1 for me) at my local Barnes and Noble. What a lovely book.

                      1. re: Elizzie

                        I'm in pig heaven now so to speak - browsing through Second Helpings of Roast Chicken, and Week In, Week Out. I'm going to have to get a new kitchen scale (current one broken) to cook from these English ones.

                        1. re: MMRuth

                          Just got back from the UK and I too have read the two other ones he mentions. Quite a nice collection, and good for the winter season.

                          1. re: sagestrat

                            I've really enjoyed reading them so far, and made the roast chicken and roasted potato dish from Roast Chicken and Other Stories - both wonderful.

                    2. re: emilief

                      I got mine through The Good Cook Club, as one of the 4 books for $1.00 each (plus considerable shipping charges) sign-up deal. They have a wide selection and are worthwhile (for the addicted...).

                  2. Made the leg of lamb recipe out of the NYT before I got the actual book. It was quite good. The anchovy really does work with the lamb. Made the "Poulet Poche a la Creme" last night. Need to try again, with some tweaks. The concept is good, but after simmering the chicken for an hour and straining the broth, I still had over a gallon of stock. He says that while the chicken rests for a bit, "reduce the rest of the stock until thick and syrupy, ending with about 1/2 cup." I didn't have the time, but somehow, I don't think I was meant to have that much stock to reduce to 1/2 cup... I did reduce it for over an hour, and there was still a couple of cups left... Anyway, I used a bit to make the sauce and poured it over the chicken. Tasted good enough that I want to try again, this time with a smaller pot and less water....

                    Looking forward to trying more recipes from the book soon.