'Grow and Cook', penned by Johann and Tom Doorley, is not your average cookbook, in that it takes you from the garden to the plate - teaching you how best to source your ingredients, make good use of seasonal produce and still end up with a mouth-watering meal.

The book, which is beautifully illustrated without being too fussy, offers us an insight into a year-in-the-life of the Doorley family, as they tend to their garden and try to make the most of the less-fruitful months of the year.

The recipes range in sophistication from classics, like bacon with parsley sauce, potato bread and lemonade, to unusual offerings, like chicken with 40 cloves of garlic and crystallised primroses as cake decorations.

There are also plenty of seasonal options, in keeping with the theme of using what is fresh at any given time of the year. Such delights include mince pies, hot cross buns and a seasonal birthday cake.

Most of the recipes featured between the covers of 'Grow and Cook' are quite short, with clearly laid-out and easy-to-follow instructions. The side-notes on the significance various meals or ingredients have in the authors' lives add another nice dimension to the book, making it more inviting to the aspiring cook, who may be delving into it in the hope of finding a new comfort dish for a cold evening or browsing for something more adventurous.

Johann and Tom Doorley also offer us plenty of tips about tending to a garden all year round, freezing foods and preparing good quality fresh produce, all-the-while making healthy-living feel like a refreshing release rather than a chore.

While over-seeing your meal from the soil to the kitchen table might not be everyone's cup-of-tea, there is still plenty to learn from the approach to food preparation that is taken here and you can quickly see how small changes in habit and lifestyle could make a big difference to the way you think of food.

Being good doesn't always mean making sacrifices.

Linda McGee