Great British Chefs (iPad app)

Cooking apps for the iPad have been one of the more popular app types available for the iPad, with celebrity chefs such as Jamie Oliver, Gordon Ramsay and Nigella Lawson all lending their names to a selection of cooking apps aimed at the home cook.

But what if you want to be more than just a home cook? What if you want to be the next Masterchef?

Designed for home cooks who want to go that extra mile, “Great British Chefs” features recipes ranging from the surprisingly simple ‘Chocolate soufflé’ – a dessert with 45 minutes cooking time – to the thoroughly complicated ‘Grain-fed beef fillet with olive oil sabayon and red win sauce’ – a recipe that’ll leave you working on it for around 14 hours.

Unless you’re an avid viewer of the Food channel on TV, most Australians probably won’t be aware of many of the chefs featured in this app. Within the culinary world, however, the chefs featured in this app are some of the best in the UK, sharing 15 Michelin stars between them.

Though the title of the app implies British cooking, many of the recipes have been inspired by the French. From the very English ‘Quail Scotch Eggs’ and ‘Earl Grey tea parfait’ to the French-inspired ‘Blueberry and lemon macaroon’, there’s quite a lot for the home cook to try.

While the recipes are elegant, the look and feel of the app is equally elegant, beautifully designed with a tiled graphic navigation filled with thumbnails of the dishes available to make. You can search for a particular type of recipe by type of meal it is – dessert, main, pastry – or find one by looking for a specific ingredient. When you work out what it is you want to make, you’ll be taken to a page offering you a description of the food, the course type, cooking time, how many it serves you’ll get, and the complexity of the dish. From there, simply tap on the ‘Recipe’ link and you’ll find a page detailing the ingredients and equipment needed to complete the meal. Some recipes even offer videos with handy hints to accompany the recipe.

Once you’ve gathered everything you’ll need, just click on the ‘Method’ link to find a thorough step-by-step guide to making your dish. A timer is built into the app, as well as the option to control the recipe by voice control, saying “next” or “back” out loud to go to the next or prior step.

While interactive cookbooks aren’t exactly new, Great British Chefs manages to differentiate itself with its 180 unique recipes combined with its beautifully designed interface. With recipes varying from easy to expert, there is a great selection of dishes that any budding chef can try at home. If you’re up for the challenge, Great British Chefs can and will test you in the kitchen.

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