Our cookbook for April 2017 was Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals. (Buy it here, if you like.)
Jamie, I am so disappointed in you.
You sold me a massive bill of goods on your 15-Minute Meals TV show, that I watched while sweating out a few gimpy miles. I figured that the book would be a perfect match of what I knew would be a rough month for me time wise. Work was about to get crazy stressful and I was preparing to move into my first home. Quick and simple meals was exactly what I needed.
Except it was all a lie. These meals did not take 15 minutes to make…it took almost three times that. Start to finish…having all the ingredients out to serving…15 minutes…mine both took 40 minutes plus. If it was 25 minutes, I would’ve given Jamie a pass…I mean, he’s a pro chef – and I am far from it…but that was not the case.
And I did try to make these meals in 15 minutes. I had two iphones timing my progress….and when that 15 minute timer went off and I was nowhere near done, I was blown away. I started rushing even more through the recipes, making messes and worrying about whether or not I was missing steps because there were so many things happening…for the two recipes I made, there were three pots on the stove at all times.
The end result of this was a general anxiousness and lack of desire to cook anything further from the book…a first for me not only for the blog, but in my life…and I have always been a bit of an anxious cook in the kitchen.
Suffice it to say, this cookbook is a YUGE miss. Save your money and go spend it on a top rated book like Food 52 Genius Recipes or The Kitchn…or some fun kitchen gadget.
As a long time fan of Jamie Oliver, this really pains me to say… but I did not enjoy this cookbook. I truly and thoroughly enjoyed the second cookbook Lisa and I cooked through last summer – Jamie at Home. Those recipes were written thoughtfully and wonderfully! This 15 Minute Meals book though… it’s like the recipes had no soul.
Sure, the scallops were delicious and so was the shred salad, but everything felt very disjointed in this book. The odd combo of main dish and side dish in each recipe often did not pair well together… and, really, you don’t always need a side for your entrée.
The meals did take much more cooking time than indicated, and to be honest… I’m not sure how even Jamie himself could tackle each recipe in 15 minutes without prepping his mise en place and without having a kitchen that looked like a tornado ripped through.
Want to know something else? I actually cooked one more recipe from this book. (The Broccoli Pasta, sans Chopped Garden Salad.) But it was so lackluster that I didn’t even bother blogging about it. (And the leftovers are slowly molding over in my fridge.)
While this book was a dud, it did not shut down my love for Jamie. I have another handful of Jamie Oliver cookbooks that I would like to cook through and review one day. Hoping those have got some soul!
Recipes We Cooked: Sausage Fusilli with Creamy Garden Salad, Golden Scallops With Sun-Blush Mash & Greens, Turkish Flats, Shred Salad, Feta & Herbs, Glazed Sizzling Chops with Sweet Tomato and Asparagus Lasagnetti
Final Verdict: Not Recommended