“Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals” – Our Verdict

Kirstin: Well, of course none of these recipes took 15 minutes, did they?

Maureen: Well no. But I liked them more than the previous book!

Kirstin: Me too. I might make some of these again, but without the 15 minute deadline.

Maureen: Yes, there were some definite keepers although I hate the way the way my kitchen looks after I’ve been making one of his recipes!

Kirstin: Yes, I totally know what you mean. Still, I won’t be giving away my copy, which is progress. Of sorts! Poor Jamie, we expect so much of him these days!

Maureen: It wasn’t disastrous, but it was stressful. There were a few good recipes in there, but I certainly won’t be giving any away as gifts this Christmas.

Kirstin: If he had just called this “More 30 Minute Meals,” he would have been on to a winner.

Maureen: I would have liked it so much better if I was always ahead of the deadline by a few minutes, rather than being over by 10 minutes most times. He missed a trick there. “More 30 Minute Meals” would have saved my sanity, but “15 Minute Meals” almost drove me over the edge.

“Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals” by Jamie Oliver: Our Conculsion

  • Overall Grade (A- F): B (Kirstin) C (Maureen) It’s better than his “30 Minute Meals”, but given that we failed that one, it’s not saying much.  F (Anna)
  • Best recipes: Gorgeous Greek Chicken (Maureen) Baked Whole Trout (Anna and Kirstin)
  • Grade for Photography (A-F): B  Kirstin: He was trying out a different style with this one, which I didn’t really like. I didn’t think it was all that.
  • Any disasters? Our kitchens, after we were done cooking with a deadline in mind. They became total disaster areas.
  • Bookshelf or Charity Shop Donation? Maureen and Kirstin: Bookshelf, but definitely not my high rotation one, and to be honest, it might be headed to the charity shop in six months time. Anna: Charity shop. Kirstin:
“Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals” – Our Verdict

“Mexican Tomato Soup with Chilli Nachos, Veggie & Feta Sprinkes” from “Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals”

Time taken to set up: 6 minutes, 16 seconds. 

Time taken to cook: 23 minutes, 6 seconds.

Maureen: Well, at least it was less than 30 minutes to make this. But more than 15.

Tim: I’m surprised you didn’t put more cheese on the nachos.

Maureen: Jamie said to use 50 grams of cheddar cheese, so I put in 50 grams, just like he said.

Tim: If I put only 50 grams of cheese on a pizza, you’d divorce me.

Maureen: That’s a little extreme. But you’re right. It needs more cheese. What do you think of the rest of it?

Andrew (13): It’s good.

Nicholas (9): Yes, I think it’s good too.

Maureen: I think you just like the fact that we’re having cheesy nachos.

Nicholas: No, I like the soup better.

Continue reading ““Mexican Tomato Soup with Chilli Nachos, Veggie & Feta Sprinkes” from “Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals””

“Mexican Tomato Soup with Chilli Nachos, Veggie & Feta Sprinkes” from “Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals”

“Chicken pasta Herby 6-Ragu” from “Jamie’s 15 minute meals”

Prep time: less than 10 minutes.

Cooking time: 29 Minutes

Tom: This is rather good! I thought it had rather a lot of ingredients in it though.

Miles: The chicken is delicious! Ella, why aren’t you eating?

Ella: Because I had pasta for lunch, at school.

Tom: Then you can get down from the table if you want.

Miles: Yes, Ella. You don’t have to get presents from Santa!

Continue reading ““Chicken pasta Herby 6-Ragu” from “Jamie’s 15 minute meals””

“Chicken pasta Herby 6-Ragu” from “Jamie’s 15 minute meals”

“Turkish Flats, Shred Salad, Feta & Herbs” from Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals

Time taken: 23 minutes

Peter: Every time I put my fork in this the flatbread shatters. Perhaps a knife and fork aren’t the right implements for this.

Anna: I agree it’s a bit messy to eat. But at least it took less time than the other recipes. I knew it would be relatively short. I even had time to clean up the kitchen a bit while the flatbreads were cooking. So that’s a first.

Peter: It’s very filling. It’s quite nice. There does seem to be a plethora of ingredients, as usual.

Anna: Yes. It’s not an easy meal to make, though easier than the other recipes we’ve done. Had to get the food processor out of the back of the cupboard. Again. Thank you for helping me with that.

Peter: I don’t need to have this again. The Mary McCartney tortillas are much better.

Anna: And we’re having them next week!

“Turkish Flats, Shred Salad, Feta & Herbs” from Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals

“Chicken Tikka, Lentil, Spinach & Naan Salad” from Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals

Time taken: 27 minutes

Anna: Words cannot express how little I want to eat this. I feel like I’ve just fought a war with every pan and ingredient in the kitchen, and lost.

Ernie: Wow, this looks incredible. Do you eat like this every night?

Peter: Luckily, no.

Anna: Can I just point out that someone clearly didn’t proof read this book. Jamie says to ‘halve the chilli’. That’s it. Halve it. So I did. And put it in the frying pan. Sceptically. And five minutes later I had to pull the thing out of the frying pan to chop it up because really, that’s what you are supposed to do. Even though he DOESN’T SAY SO IN THE RECIPE. And. And. He calls for a small frying pan. What he means is a medium frying pan. You can’t get a whole packet of lentils in a small frying pan with spring onions and half a chilli and a squashed tomato. So I had to transfer everything halfway through cooking. And part of that bloody tomato went on the floor and my cashmere cardigan when I squashed it. What’s wrong with chopping eh Jamie?

Peter: Please excuse her. She’s having a rant.

Ernie: Well I think it tastes delicious. It is really different. It’s spicy and sweet. Very different.

Anna: I’m glad you like it Dad. But I’m never cooking it again.

“Chicken Tikka, Lentil, Spinach & Naan Salad” from Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals

“Sausage Fusilli with Creamy Garden Salad” from Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals

Prep time: 7 minutes.

Cooking time: 30 minutes, 29 seconds.

Kirstin: This is rather good.

Tom: It’s rather clever the way he cooks the meat in parallel with the sauce which makes it much drier than our usual sausage sauce. Nice one! Because the way we normally cook our sausage sauce means the longer you cook it, the better it is.

Kirstin: I could have added some of the cooking water to make it  less dry, but tipped it all away before I read that bit in the recipe. I also couldn’t be bothered to really rush this recipe as I had a lovely chat with Tom about our days as I cooked. It added time, but also pleasure to the making of the meal.

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“Sausage Fusilli with Creamy Garden Salad” from Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals

“Salsa Verde Tuna with Sicilian Tomato & Pasta Salad” from “Jamie’s 15-Minute Meals”

Time taken to prepare: 35 minutes, 21 seconds (not including set up)

Nicholas (9): How much time did it take?

Maureen: This one was just over 35 minutes.

Nicholas: This is not a 15 minute meal. It’s not even a 30 minute meal.

Maureen: Maybe they should call the book, 15 Minutes for Jamie, 30 minutes for everyone else. What do you think?

Andrew (12): It’s alright.

Nicholas: This is not my type of dinner. Or, as I would say, “NMD– Not My Dinner.”

Maureen: That’s too bad, because this tuna is gorgeous. And expensive.

Tim: I thought it was good, but it’s similar to something we’ve had before.

Maureen: I’m not sure about that, to be honest. I think this is entirely new.

Tim: The sauce is definitely a retread.

Maureen: Yes, that’s true. It’s salsa verde. I’ve made this loads of times before. In fact, I think the first time I made salsa verde was from a Jamie Oliver cookbook. It’s perfect with fish. Would you like me to make this again?

Tim: Sure.

Andrew: Maybe.

Nicholas: N-O. That spells no, in case you were wondering.

A snap of the destruction we had to clean up afterward. It’s not pretty, is it?

“Salsa Verde Tuna with Sicilian Tomato & Pasta Salad” from “Jamie’s 15-Minute Meals”

“Gorgeous Greek Chicken with Herby Vegetable Couscous & Tzatziki” from “Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals”

If you would like to see if you can make it in 15 minutes (Good Luck!) you can find the recipe on Jamie Oliver’s web page by clicking on this sentence.

Prep Time: 4 minutes (aided by the fact that we keep our food processor on the counter, ready to go)

Cook Time: 27 minutes, 3 seconds.

Andrew (12): It’s good. I really like it. Me like!

Nicholas (9): I agree. I’m putting a thumbs up on this.

 

Maureen: What do you like about it?

Andrew: I generally like couscous– whatever it’s in.

Tim: It’s good. It’s nothing special, but I like it.

Maureen: To be honest, it’s not hugely different from the couscous I make with roasted chicken thighs, peppers and feta. But it was slightly quicker to do it this way.

Nicholas: But it still wasn’t done in 15 minutes!

Maureen: Not even close. But if this had been featured in the 30 minutes book, we would have succeeded. This book is stressing me out as much as the last one, even though Jamie says in the introduction we shouldn’t get too caught up in getting in done in 15 minutes.

Nicholas: Well then he shouldn’t have called the book the 15 Minute Meals Book.

Maureen: I agree. Would you like me to make it again?

All: Yes, please.

Maureen: At least we have a winner on our hands.

“Gorgeous Greek Chicken with Herby Vegetable Couscous & Tzatziki” from “Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals”

“Golden Chicken, Braised Greens and Potato Gratin” from Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals

Prep time: 10 minutes.

Cooking time: 32 minutes 47 seconds.

Miles: I like this 100 percent out of 200 percent.

Kirstin: What?!?

Ella: That means 50 percent.

Kirstin: Don’t you mean 200 percent out of 100 percent?

Miles: This is the best chicken IN THE UNIVERSE!

Tom: All I can say is that this is 15 minutes, my arse! This took two of us, working flat  out to cook this and it still took half an hour.

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“Golden Chicken, Braised Greens and Potato Gratin” from Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals

“Asian Fish with Miso Noodles & Crunchy Veg” from “Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals”

Anna: God I’m stressed. This is not relaxed cooking.

Peter: There appears to be a lot of washing up. Again.

Anna: This just isn’t enjoyable and frankly is putting me off the food. It took me the best part of 10 minutes to get all the millions of ingredients together and get the bloody food processor out of the back of the cupboard.

Peter: It does actually taste nice, but I don’t think miso smells very good.

Anna: I forgot how annoying it is that there are no timing indications for how long the different components should cook. So the noodles, I’m afraid, are over-cooked. You’re right, they are nice, but I will never be cooking this again. I can’t cook with this many ingredients. My kitchen looks like a disaster area.

Peter: Well it took you 27 minutes.

Anna: Not exactly 15!

“Asian Fish with Miso Noodles & Crunchy Veg” from “Jamie’s 15 Minute Meals”