Cookbook Review: 4 Ingredients Christmas by Kim McCosker

My rating: 1 star

Perfect for the person who hates to cook and hates the taste of food.






This book has fantastic ideas but it clearly hasn’t been through proper recipe testing so the timing temperature and instructions are a really off.

I can imagine the author sitting down at her laptop thinking up these great ideas but using guestimates for the recipe and leaving it up to the stylist to cook the food properly for the photos.

The book is designed for the really inexperienced cook which is a noble purpose BUT leaves out so many basic steps that these kinds of cooks can only end up with a disaster.

I was really looking forward to this book and was quite disappointed.

Sweet Pumpkin Gillette  by 4 Ingredients for Xmas by Kim McCosker

Here is the picture from the book:

  • 2 sheets puff pastry cut in half
  • 1kg pumpkin, peeled, seeded, cut into 6cm pieces  (what does this mean? Lengthways, across? The photo looks like 1 cm slices lengthways!!)
  • 1 cup (320g) sour cream
  • 1 cup (320g) sweet chilli sauce (This is nearly a whole bottle!!)

Preheat oven to 200C. Place pumpkin wedges on a baking tray and bake for 15 mins. (There is no way pumpkin is going to cook or even get warm in 15 mins!) Remove from oven.

Join two halves of pastry together to create a long rectangle shape and roll in 1 cm of pastry to create a lip around the edges.

Place each length on a paper lined baking tray.

Spread sour cream over the bases.

Lay pumpkin on top, season with sea salt and cracked pepper then drizzle with sweet chilli sauce.  (Note: placing hot food on puff pastry melts the butter and causes the pastry to become a soggy mess! The recipe fails to recommend cooling the pumpkin.)

Place in oven and bake for 15 minutes or until the pastry edges are puffed and golden. (The pastry packet recommends 25-30 minutes to ensure pastry is cooked! I had to cook to 30 minutes to get the photo)

Pumpkin is not going to cook in 30 minutes total oven time.

This tasted ok near the crispy edges. I had to throw the rest of the soggy pastry/hard pumpkin mess into the bin.

It’s actually a terrific idea and would work with other vegetables. I just wish more care had been taken in drafting the recipe.

Other interesting ideas are below:

Below: Almond bread; Chocolate crepes; Pancakes with caramelised bananas; Decadent salmon stacks

Below: Christmas cake, Plum pudding, Roly Poly trifle, Choc cherry fudge


I received my copy gratis, you can buy it online at Ingredients Christmas

4 Ingredients Christmas


  • cashew
    December 8, 2011 - 8:46 am | Permalink

    wow, is this your harshest review yet?!?

  • admin
    December 8, 2011 - 9:02 am | Permalink

    Hi Cashew
    Thanks for your comment. Sadly its NOT the worst review. That honour goes to the Country Women’s Association at 1/2 star.
    Love from

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