App Review: Great British Chefs – feed your eyes, and your tummy

Allan Swann
March 27, 2013

Apple iPad
Great British Chefs

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There is no shortage of high quality foodie apps on the iPad ‘ indeed tablets are excellently suited to cooking, rapidly replacing cookbooks for the tech savvy.

The prices on these apps are also sky-high, ranging from anywhere from free to £50 ‘ as competition has heated up (excuse the pun), the quality of the apps has grown. Apple is doing here what it did to magazines ‘ killing them. It is no longer sufficient to simply dump a magazine or cook book into PDFs and throw it into the app store.

Its safe to say the latest Great British Chefs app remains a top shelf experience. Seven chefs have put their name to the app, Shaun Rankin, Nathan Outlaw, Frances Atkins, Martin Wishart, Pascal Aussignac, Marcus Wareing, Tom Aiken Agnar Sverrisson, James Sommerin, Nuno Mendes, Daniel Clifford, and Simon Hulstone.

As well as peering through their profiles, you can sift through entire menus of their construction, or focus on single dishes ‘ all lovingly photographed and rendered by the iPad at full Retina Display resolution.

Each chef produces around 3 full menus, broken down into canapes, starters, mains, desserts and Petit Four. These are all organisable by chef, course, type of food ‘ and British Chefs has even thrown in easy, medium and challenging categories for the cooking masochists among us.

Each meal is broken down into ingredients (and of course the instructions to cook them!), and each ingredient can be added to a shopping list at a touch, the shopping basket is a separate part of the app, which allows you to organise your trip to Selfridges (you won’t find a lot of these ingredients in ASDA) with ease.

What makes the app shine is the UI ‘ it is an absolute breeze to operate, minimalism at its finest. You won’t need a tutorial at all, everything is done via touch, swipes and/or logically placed buttons. Ensuring when you’re burning your hands on the stove, you aren’t pulling your hair out trying to navigate the app.

There is also a nice ‘hints’ area where video tutorials explain the trickier aspects ‘ such as sectioning an octopus correctly, make foam with a gas canister (for those of the Molecular Gastronomy persuasion) and butchering various avian wildlife.

Unfortunately, there isn’t terribly much here for casual chefs ‘ this is more for those that already have a pretty decent skillset ‘ there are no chip butties in here. Bearing that in mind, £5 is very reasonable.

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