The River Cafe Cookbook by Rose Gray and Ruth Rogers

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Notes about this book

  • owaint on November 22, 2010

    I never cease to be disappointed by this and its sister book. Every time I come back to them and try to give them another chance I find myself reading through them and finding little or nothing which takes my fancy. There are much better modern Italian books out there - Giorgio Locatelli's for example shows how good a book can be. The River Cafe ones feel like books we *should* like but I'll freely admit that I've never been able to.

Notes about Recipes in this book

  • Penne with tomato and balsamic vinegar (Penne con pomodoro e aceto balsamico)

    • Tommelise on June 22, 2011

      We really liked the dish, even my picky 4 year old :) The sour taste of the balsamico went very well with the tomato sauce. Do not skip the basil.

  • Cervelle e animelle in padella (pan-fried calf's brains and sweetbreads)

    • sandradelgreco on July 03, 2011

      Cooked w sb & brains from Vic Market - exceptional quality

  • Penne all'Amatriciana

    • aargle on April 17, 2013

      The best all'amatriciana recipe

    • ithyt on November 02, 2015

      8.14 Scrummy - slow cooking intensifies the flavours - delish.

  • Penne with a slow-cooked sausage sauce (Penne con sugo di salsiccie alla Adam)

    • FJT on June 05, 2016

      Love this pasta sauce - great flavour. It takes a bit of time but it is one of my husband's favourite sauces to make and I'm all for encouraging him to cook more! I usually get him to make double the quantity to ensure we have some in the freezer.

    • joneshayley on January 10, 2019

      A very good pasta sauce- creamy and unctuous, very tasty. I halved the cream and Parmesan the second time I made this, to no ill effect- sauce is just as good, if not better because it’s not as heavy.

    • Dolcetto23 on January 30, 2021

      We have this (or the fast version) at least once a month, with different sausages. Our favourites are Toulouse and venison (Italian fennel sausages are also wonderful but I tend to keep them for salsiccia e fagioli all'uccelletto). And these days, I tend to leave out the cream.

  • Spaghetti al limone

    • FJT on February 14, 2017

      Delicious and quick to make. Worked well with parsley in place of the basil. Perfect quick supper on a nice day.

    • Melanie on September 28, 2013

      So delicious - very quick as well, perfect to make after work. I used far less oil and instead reserved a little cooking water to stop the pasta drying out.

    • lils74 on March 13, 2022

      Recipe can be found online here

  • Minestrone invernale (winter minestrone)

    • Melanie on June 02, 2016

      Easy, tasty and filling. I added a small handful of pasta.

  • Crostata di limone (lemon tart)

    • Hellyloves2cook on May 21, 2012

      An impressive lemony tangy tart. The first time I made- it was a success. The second time I ended up wasting the lemony mixture as it did not thicken after 20 mins of stiring over the heat. Must have the heat high enough but not too high that the mixture will curdle - a little patience required. Pastry is grated and pressed into the tart tin- so easy Just need to make sure it is an even thickness however. Having now mastered this , it is my lemon tart recipe of choice - never fails to please!

  • Chocolate nemesis

    • Hellyloves2cook on November 01, 2012

      Made this twice- in my copy the recipe states bake in oven for 30 mins. I had to leave it for over an hour. This is the recipe that many love- I have eaten it at The River Cafe itself many years ago - but famously have had problems with cooking it.. I looked into this and found that it is indeed the cooking time which is at fault. Some people have needed to bake this for 90 mins. All ovens are different so you need to keep checking. .

    • DonVetere on February 08, 2015

      We use ½ the quantity of sugar noted and it's still plenty sweet.

  • Spinach with oil and lemon

    • Hellyloves2cook on November 01, 2012

      This is my Favourite way to eat spinach- my children love this- Infact great to do with other greens especially brocolli.

  • Inzimino di ceci (chickpeas with swiss chard)

    • Hellyloves2cook on November 01, 2012

      Love this recipe. I have served this with monkfish. I used tinned chickpeas to save time really.and silver beet instead of the Swiss chard leaves. Also if you don't fancy making the tomato sauce, then can substitute I tsp tomato purée with 2 tbsp of water.- as I did on one occasion.

    • Vanessa888 on September 12, 2014

      Probably my most used recipe in the whole book! A friend's mum made it for me years ago and when she told me where to find the recipe I rushed out and bought the book. I make this all the time.

    • Ganga108 on March 09, 2022

      A stunning recipe, one that I have cooked over and over again. It stuns visitors and became a family favourite very quickly.

  • Quince cheese

    • DulcieD on March 15, 2015

      worked well and good result, set well but may have to pop in dehydrator to get more firmness

  • Zuppa di zucca (pumpkin soup)

    • ithyt on November 02, 2015

      7.14 Blended w stick blender - ok - good basic soup.

  • Risotto di zucca (pumpkin risotto)

    • ithyt on November 02, 2015

      6.14 Perfect risotto - delish.

    • Melyinoz on February 11, 2022

      Delightful! I had to make some minor subs, but I will make this again soon with all the right ingredients.

  • Broccoli con accuighe (broccoli with anchovy)

    • tekobo on April 13, 2018

      I liked this. The broccoli was soft and yielding as opposed to my normal al dente attack on the senses. Used Swedish anchovies in a spiced brine (actually, I have just found out that they are not anchovies at all but are sprats/whitebait - you learn something new everyday!). Didn't make the bruschetta.

  • Risotto con fiori di zucchini (risotto with zucchini flowers)

    • tekobo on June 26, 2016

      A great risotto variant. Used mandolin to slice the baby courgettes, they gave the dish a lovely texture.

  • Penne with a quick sausage sauce (Penne con sugo di salsiccie alla Cloe)

    • Dolcetto23 on January 30, 2021

      We have this (or the slow version) at least once a month, with different sausages. Our favourites are Toulouse and venison (Italian fennel sausages are also wonderful but I tend to keep them for salsiccia e fagioli all'uccelletto)

  • Ribollita

    • tbeckett on January 03, 2019

      This recipe intrigued me. Once I figured out “Cavolo Nero” is collard greens, I cooked this delicious soup and will again soon. My first experience putting bread in soup, too.

  • Risotto ai funghi (risotto with mushrooms)

    • Ganga108 on November 01, 2021

      Very similar to the Risotto with Wild Mushrooms in River Cafe Two (page 106). Delicious!

  • Salmoriglio (oregano sauce)

    • Ganga108 on January 23, 2021

      A salmoriglio is a fresh herb sauce, in which the flavour of the herb is brought out by crushing it with sea salt. It is very intense, so should be used sparingly.

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Reviews about Recipes in this Book

  • ISBN 10 009180731X
  • ISBN 13 9780091807313
  • Linked ISBNs
  • Published May 04 1995
  • Format Hardcover
  • Page Count 320
  • Language English
  • Countries United Kingdom
  • Publisher Ebury Press
  • Imprint Ebury Press

Publishers Text

A sophisticated re-interpretation of the cucina rustica or farmhouse cooking of northern Italy, the food of THE RIVER CAFE' relies on good quality, fresh, seasonal produce - plus authentic Italian ingredients such as polenta, buffalo mozzarella and extra virgin olive oil. The emphasis is very much on the type of cooking found in Italian homes rather than restaurants. Ruth and Rose's direct, uncomplicated approach means that many of the dishes are strikingly simple - fish, meat and vegetables are chargrilled, pan-fried and baked - but all of them, from the Tuscan bread soup Ribollita to main dishes such as Manzo in Tegame (Braised Beef Fillet) and Maiale al Latte (Pork Cooked in Milk) are vibrant with flavour, In addition, there are numerous recipes for Italian-inspired desserts, such as Zabaglione Ice Cream, Almond and Lemon Cake, and Grilled Peaches with Amaretto.

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