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Made By Hand: Book Review

Reviewed by's Anna Gowan

Julie Le Clerc's Made by Hand features a cross-section of recipes to cater to every Kiwi diet. 

Beautifully photographed by the author herself, the cook book includes gluten-free and vegetarian recipes, along with tasty guides to cooking with whole foods, organics and super foods.

Le Clerc has placed an emphasis on creating nutritious recipes using natural ingredients, some of which proved a little difficult to find at the local supermarket. However, it was easy enough to use substitute ingredients and enthusiastic chefs should be able to find Le Clerc's suggested products at local health food shops.

We attempted six recipes over the course of several weeks, including the roast pumpkin and bulgher salad with hazelnut and red capsicum dressing, spaghetti with tomato sauce and chicken meatballs, and Le Clerc's secret spinach paneer.

Our particular favourites included the buckwheat, eggplant and tomato salad, which proved a tasty and fresh alternative to the usual Kiwi salad. 

Le Clerc's sour orange Thai fish curry did away with coconut cream/milk and was a light and tasty dish encompassing all the flavours of Thai cooking: sweet, sour and spicy.

The chocolate and courgette cake proved a crowd pleaser, and kept well for several days after cooking. 

In fact, many of Le Clerc's recipes feature hidden vegetables - this book could prove an invaluable tool when cooking for vegetable-phobic kids.

Made by Hand features nutritious variations on old Kiwi favourites. The recipes are elegantly presented, easy to follow and tasty to boot.

Rating: 9/10

Made by Hand, by Julie Le Clerc
Publisher: Penguin
RRP: $52.00
Available: Now