Jamie Oliver made his fame in Britain, and later here in the U.S., as the Naked Chef, known for simple recipes and fresh ingredients. Since that early beginning, Jamie has become a revolutionary, determined to bring more attention to the obesity epidemic, and drawing a parallel between that issue and the over-reliance on pre-packaged foods.
My daughter gave me this cookbook last year for my birthday. It's a companion book to the popular TV show of the same name. The concept of bringing attention back to the basics of food, and of cooking, really resonated with me. A recent poll that shows we as a country spent more on fast food than on education in a single year - a very scary thought.
The recipes are simple and delicious, with familiar and nutritious ingredients. The usual veggie/meat/fish chapters are included, along with more fun groupings like Easy Curries, Homely Ground Beef, and Kick-Start Breakfasts. Hands-down faves in our family are Evolution Tomato Salad and Super-Quick Salmon Stir Fry.
We've become such fans that my daughter and I ate at Jamie's Italian in Liverpool this summer. We didn't see Jamie (naked or otherwise), but it solidified our fan status for the chef, and this cookbook. (2009, The Penguin Group)
Late-Breaking Addition - Just read that Jamie's Italian in Birmingham was destroyed last night by the riots that have flared up across England. I'm thinking of all the amazing cities and towns across England that have been impacted by the violence. My thoughts are with everyone there.