Featuring just under 1,500 recipes, iCookbook for Windows 8 is bound to include something that will tempt you into putting on your chef's hat and start cooking up a storm.
Although iCookbook is free, it is listed in the Windows Store as a trial version. As we went to press the app offered just under 1,500 recipes. It is, however, automatically updated with new recipes every month, so there's often something new to tempt you into breaking out the weighing scales.
Each recipe has a large photo, a difficulty rating and an indication of how many portions it makes. As we write, the ingredients are, however, given in US measurements, and while there's a unit-conversion tool you can't customise iCookbook so that it displays measurements in your chosen format.
The other aspect that doesn't work well is the side-scrolling design.
It will be ideal on a Windows 8 tablet or a touchscreen laptop or PC, but on a standard laptop running Windows 8 Consumer Preview, navigation is not intuitive. Holding down the right arrow key on a laptop keyboard is currently the only option, and this works very slowly and only in some sections of the app.
iCookbook for Windows 8: recently viewed recipes
Better is the fact you can leave iCookbook and have it return to the recipe page you left. Recently viewed recipes and any you mark as favourites appear in panes on the opening screen. The search option is not fully implemented, but you can view by dish and then by ingredient, theme, occasion and cuisine type.
There are, however, no ‘lighter choices' such as healthy eating, diabetic, vegetarian or wheat-free either. There is a salad section, but the 55 recipes here are anything but dainty.
iCookbook has a great deal of potential and the navigation issues will be sorted out once touchscreen Windows computing is the norm, while the huge photo visuals and large type are ideal for at-a-glance consultation in the kitchen. A search option, healthier foodstuffs and measurements in the user's preferred units will vastly improve this app.