Monday, 3 August 2009

Review - Annabel Karmel - Complete Family Meal Planner

OK I was sent this lovely book to use and review courtesy of Sian at mummytips and the people at Ebury Publishing.

First impressions when I got the book out of the package, were that it was pretty substantial and had a lovely shiny wipe clean cover, always a bonus when kids want to help with the cooking.

First I just had a quick flick through and because we were both poorly the week the book arrived, decided to just make something that we already had ingredients for so it was the "Chicken Balls in Sweet and Sour Sauce"...I was a bit sceptical, my smurf is a terribly fussy eater,he wont eat lots of things, but hey I'll try anything once... the ingredients were straight forward, the instructions easy to follow and lo and behold in about 30 minutes we had a lovely meal ready, I rather gingerly put it on the table and to my huge surprise ...he scoffed everything that was on his plate.

Feeling inspired by this I have chosen a different recipe everyday and so far so good he has eaten at least some of everything we have tried. We have tried a variety of recipes, both sweet and savoury and some of the baking too.

I love the book, the recipes are easy to follow, there are no weird ingredients and nothing takes very long to put together, the other plus point for me is that they can be frozen, which is a great time saver and means when I am not home I know what daddy is feeding the smurf.
The other thing that makes me love this book is that we can all eat the meals and most of them are suitable for encouraging a bit of help from the children.

Having now had time to have a good old mooch through the book there are a few recipes that have made me  go..Hm mm not sure about that, but maybe that is more about my likes and dislikes and it would not stop me trying to get smurf to eat them.

Another of my favorite things with the Complete Family Meal Planner is just that it really is complete there are recipes from breakfast to dessert and also some lovely cakes and tasty treats, including the truly yummy "Glossy Dark & White Chocolate Brownies....not for kids but mummy loved them!!! You can see a picture above.

I love the advice and shopping lists at the front of the book and all the lovely quirky illustrations that appear thought the book as well as the photographs of some of the food, which really whets your appetite as you flick through.

All in all I would thoroughly recommend this book, its easy to use, gives some great inspiration to try new things and also adds a few new recipes that mums & dads can scoff to...defiantly worth having in your kitchen


  1. I must confess to being an Annabel Karmel fan. I have a few of her books but not this one......yet.

  2. Brilliant review! Please can you send me 6 brownies? Thanks! By the way, love your new look blog x

  3. Thanks Sandy, was just playing around with it while Smurf was asleep,bit new to all this so just trial and error. Brownies coming your way!!
    Insomniac...the book really is worth getting!

  4. Me again!
    I've tagged you over at mine x

  5. I adore Annabel Karmel books & will definitely buy this one just to get the recipe for those brownies, they look amazing!

  6. New Mummy - they really did taste as good as they looked.

    Notsuchayummymummy - they were fab, but there were lots of great recipes in the book, well worth adding to your collection.