The Bottom Line
The subtitle of The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook, From Cauldron Cakes to Knickerbocker Glory-More Than 150 Magical Recipes for Wizards and Non-Wizards Alike, highlights only some of the delights to be found in this enjoyable Harry Potter cookbook. These include interesting facts about the foods, as well as their Harry Potter connections. As the introduction to The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook states, "If you're not from the British Isles you may not recognize the foods mentioned in the Harry Potter series. This book is your guide." I recommend The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook by Dinah Bucholz for all ages.
- Well-designed and organized
- Easy-to-follow recipes
- Each recipe includes its relationship to the Harry Potter series
- Interesting tidbits of history and other facts included for each recipe
- Index, source list, general tips on food preparation, companion Web site
- No photos in book, although 66 photos of recipes included on companion Web site
- Title: The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook
- Author: Dinah Bucholz
- Length: 240 pages
- Recommended for: Harry Potter fans of all ages and those interested in learning about traditional foods of the British Isles
- Publisher: Adams Media
- Publication Date: 2010
- ISBN: 9781440503252
Guide Review - The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook
I didn't expect to find The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook such an enjoyable read. Much of this is due to the book's design and organization, as well as the author's enthusiasm for both the recipes and their connections to the Harry Potter series. Printed in brown ink on beige weathered-looking pages, the cookbook has a deep purple cover with gold lettering and a picture of a bubbling cauldron on it, an appropriately wizardly look.
Each of the ten chapters begins with an entertaining description about activities in the Harry Potter series that relate to the chapter's theme. Author Dinah Bucholz writes in the chatty tone of someone writing about friends and acquaintances rather than characters in a book. For example, in the first chapter, Good Food With Bad Relatives, Bucholz describes several special meals with the Dursleys, two of which Harry ruined, to his relatives chagrin.
Each recipe begins with an account of how the recipe relates to the Harry Potter series and in what chapter and Harry Potter book (or books) mention of the food can be found. On each recipe page, there is also a special section that provides tidbits of historical information or other facts related to the recipes in The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook.
The design of The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook somewhat mitigates the absence of photos. However, I particularly enjoy seeing a photograph of any recipe I plan to use before I start cooking, and many kids and other adults feel the same. Consequently, I was pleased to find 66 color photographs of foods from the book on The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook Web site. The recipe photos are sorted into the following categories: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner, Dessert, and Tea, plus Candies and Confections.
The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook: My Recommendation
The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook is not only a good cookbook for Harry Potter fans, it is also a good cookbook for families interested in learning more about, and enjoying, some traditional recipes from the British Isles. Some of the recipes that particularly intrigued me are those for Bangers and Mash, Cornish Pasties, Rock Cakes and Knickerblocker Glory. Even a child who doesn't like to try anything new, may be willing to try it if it relates to Harry Potter. I recommend The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook for kids, teens and adults.
Disclosure: A review copy was provided by the publisher. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.