I love the way her books give me an insight into her past. I love the photography of the food that I KNOW is still edible even after being under studio lights. How do know...well, because it's Belinda's cooking it has to be.
Most of all I just love the food and the way her recipe's just work.
Mix and Bake is the most useful cookbook I have come across. I used 3 (yes 3!) of its recipes as my wedding cake, her scones are MY scones and as is the case with the following recipe, you can make some tweaks and generally not stuff things up.
|Image from Penguin|
Belinda (yes I am on first name terms with all of my favourite cookbook authors Belinda, Jamie, Stephanie...) herself says that there are many variations of her "simple upside-down tomato and basil pie" and I think I try something different every time I make it.
Sometimes I halve the amount of canned tomatoes (and it still works), I sometimes replace the mustard powder with dijon or wholegrain mustard (and it still works), I never have Tabasco in the house so chuck in some chili flakes (and it still works) and most of the time I'm out of basil and will use another random herb instead and yes it still works. And of course I don't use egg and it works with "No-egg" replacer.
|Tomato and Basil pie...sans basil!|
In this particular version it was I added a can of cannellini beans after the tomato. I really enjoy this variation and it packs some extra protein points in.
So try it, Belinda's way, my way, your way....whatever, it still works.