Monday, 6 December 2010

Risotto and Lies

I am calling Jamie Oliver out as a massive liar!

I've been using the rather wonderful Jamie's 20 Minute Meals app. It's great. I've learnt a lot of things. I've learnt how to cook some rather nice chicken. I've also learnt that you can not cook risotto in 20 minutes.

Given the darned thing's called 20 Minute Meals - either I'm crap or it's full of filthy foreign lies! I can't cook a risotto in 20 minutes, because it takes the rice 40 minutes to absorb the stock! No matter how fast I cook, the rice won't play ball! Even superman himself would be defeated by this conundrum. I'm not Dr. Who! The rice isn't Dr. Who! Nobody's Dr. Who!

Perhaps if I devised a massive press to physically force the water into the granules of rice, I might be able to cook risotto in 20 minutes. However I'm pretty sure that'd ruin the onions.

"Would I lie to you?"
At this stage I can either settle that Jamie Oliver is a filthy liar, that Waitrose risotto rice is crap for risottos or that somehow I'm so incompetent at cooking that the rice refuses to absorb moisture. I mean the stock dries up at the same rate at which the sea slugs are draining the sea! Carefully considering all things, I chose the to place all responsibility at the lap of a total stranger.

None the less, I do recommend the app. Cook books are so 2010. Make way for the iChef! Bam!

Admittedly Jamie's app isn't perfect. I am very happy to hear a tip read out to me when I first turn to a page of the recipe. In fact I think it's a rather cool feature.

I'm not so happy about it when I flick back to double check something. I'm even less happy when the dam tip chirps up again as I flick thorugh to where I was. I'm pretty miffed when the tip plays the next time I attempt the recipe.

Nigela's Quick Collection is also a beautiful little gem. It's got verve, it's got pizzaz, it's got voice control. You can tell the app to flick forwards or backwards just by speaking. Admittedly quite firmly, which will make you look like a freak to onlookers, but it means you don't need to risk smearing your lovely Steve Jobs job with raw egg.

Unlike Jamie's app though, it doesn't list the portions throughout the recipe. It's a big nuisance shouting "backwards", "backwards", "backwards" at the phone just because you forgot whether it was a teaspoon or tablespoon of salt.

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