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Monica Rivron’s Caravan Cookbook is billed as “an inspirational guide to family cooking”. Since the proof of the pudding is in the eating, I decided to put Caravan Cookbook to the test by enlisting the help of my very own domestic goddess to cook one of the recipes.
Caravan Cookbook is published by the same people and in the same format as My Cool Caravan. It is lavishly and attractively illustrated on glossy paper and the recipes are all very tempting on paper. So how do they fare in the eating?
Our chosen recipe falls into the “cook before you go” category and is the banana bread recipe on page 19. I’m a big fan of banana bread and my wife cooks it regularly with her own recipe – so we were looking forward to putting the Caravan Cookbook recipe to the test.
My wife reported that the instructions were easy to follow and that measurements were precise and provided in both imperial and metric units – useful, in a country as unit-confused as the UK (where else would sell fuel in litres but measure fuel consumption in miles per gallon?).
Cooking time according to the recipe was one hour, but our oven often takes a little longer, and true to form the cake was cooked after one hour and ten minutes:
First impressions were good and it tasted pretty impressive, too. The chocolate chips in the recipe blend perfectly with the banana to create a cake that’s full of flavour, sweet, moist and everything a banana cake should be. We didn’t have the specified white chocolate chips so used milk chocolate instead, which worked fine.
The remainder of Caravan Cookbook contains a wide varieties of recipes, mostly billed as suitable for cooking in a caravan (or motorhome) and ideal for lazy summer days and holiday treats. All of them look pretty tasty, but I will add my usual caveat which is that they do rely on a fairly wide range of core ingredients and utensils.
Many of these recipes are more likely to do duty in the MotorhomePlanet.co.uk house than in our motorhome; our holiday cooking tends to be a little simpler than this.
Caravan Cookbook contains a fantastic variety of tasty-looking recipes – and if all the recipes work as well as the banana bread, you’ll not complain. You do need to be prepared for some proper cooking – but the results should be worth it.
Update 12/09/2011: Caravan Cookbook continues to be the only one of the cook books we’ve reviewed that we’ve actually used several times (at home), always with good results. Recommended.