The Cook-along concept

Welcome! I'm The Amateur Chef and this is a little about me and how my website works.

TheAmateurChef concept is simple - each of my recipes has been honed to make your time in the kitchen as enjoyable as possible. I like to think of them as real recipes for real people! Each has it's own cook-along video and, if you follow what I do on your laptop, tablet or smartphone, you'll end up with the exact dish in the photo! You have realistic timings (unlike many recipe books/sites), and can cook alongside me in your kitchen, as I show you what to do and when. You can be sure that if a dish says it will take 20 minutes, then it will take 20 minutes. There's no "Here's one I made earlier", or creative video editing to make things look easier. All the photos on the website are of the actual dishes that I cook in the videos, so if you like the look of something, cook-along!

There are many themes and recipes to suit all tastes and skill levels. Only you know how long you're prepared to spend in the kitchen, so choose from themes such as 'Weeknight meals' for quick dishes or 'Show-Off' for special occasions. There's also a 'Techniques' section that shows you how to do a few tricky things, step by step, such as tying up a joint of meat or making your own pastry.

I've come up with a new way for you to easily plan meals by separating the length of time you'll actually spend cooking ("You cook for x minutes"), from the total time the meal takes from fridge to table ("Total time x minutes"). For example, my beef casserole will only take 7 minutes to cook, however the total time from fridge to table is 2 hours because your oven does nearly all the work! I've also listed all the equipment you'll need because it really is a lot easier if you get everything out before you start.

I created after being food-obsessed for 7 years. I've pored through cookery books, websites and TV shows, picking up tips and tricks, as well as a wife and a baby along the way… Like most amateur cooks, I've always enjoyed impressing friends and family with tasty, attractive meals, but don't want to spend all day in the kitchen. The problem with many recipe books is that a top chef's idea of a simple dish is often a world away from what ordinary, untrained cooks think is simple. I've often thought it would be great to have someone in my kitchen, showing me what to do and when. As my cooking ability has grown, I've created hundreds of my own recipes and launched this site.

If you like food blogs, or would like to keep up with my goings-on, take a look at my blog '5 things I've learnt this week' - a fun weekly update about cooking and family life for an Amateur Chef!

What you see in the videos is the practiced dish. I may make it look simple, but that's the plan! I've tried and tested every recipe to make sure that the format and speed is easy for Amateur Chefs everywhere to keep up. Things don't always go to plan however, and as you can see from my outtakes video on the right, I don't always get it right first time!

I hope that you like my website - please enjoy the recipes and videos, tell others about and have fun!

Happy cooking,

The Amateur Chef


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