I Heart Rome - Maria Pasquale


I Heart Rome: Recipes & Stories from the Eternal City
by Maria Pasquale is a guided tour with beautiful food and location photography, classic recipes, and stories from the Italian capital. Profiles of food purveyors and chefs told along with quirky stories and glorious pictures, take the reader on an inspiring journey through the Rome that tourists rarely get to see.

In a country justifiably famous for its food, Rome boasts its own fascinating cuisine that is fundamentally tied to its history. Influences from Ancient Rome to more recent events are reflected in the food culture of the city today. The author keeps us in touch with the past while keeping a finger on the pulse on Rome's modern offerings.

Recipes in this title include the classics from Crocchette di patate (potato croquettes), Crostata di marmellata (jam tart), to Pesce in guazzetto (fish stew). Essays on Jewish-Roman cuisine and the Roman ghetto, market guides, with pizza and pasta heavily covered. Besides the recipes, recommendations on where to eat, where to drink and how to experience Rome like an Italian is shared.

Maria is the voice behind the blog Heart Rome which has become the go-to for information on travel  information on Rome, dining and broader travel. I Heart Rome is her first cookbook and is indeed a love letter to this beautiful city.

Amatriciana  by Eleonora Chiari

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Serves 4

  • 150 g (5½ oz) guanciale (cured pork cheek)
  • 1 red chilli
  • 400 g (14 oz) rigatoni, mezze maniche or bucatini pasta
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 350 g (12½ oz) fresh cherry tomatoes, chopped (or tinned chopped tomatoes)
  • 50 g (1¾ oz) Pecorino Romano, grated, plus extra for serving
  • 50 g (1¾ oz) Parmigiano Reggiano, grated, plus extra to serve

Heat a large frying pan. Cut the guanciale into chunky strips about 1 cm (½ inch) thick and add them to the pan with the whole chilli. Fry over medium heat for about 2-3 minutes, or until the guanciale becomes dark and crunchy and the fat has melted. Turn off the heat.

Remove the guanciale using a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel. Discard the chilli, but leave the leftover fat in the frying pan.

Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil. Add the pasta and cook for the time indicated on the packet.

Meanwhile, add the olive oil to the leftover guanciale fat, then add the tomatoes. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and cook over low heat for 10 minutes.

Once the pasta is al dente, drain and add to the sauce, along with the cooked guanciale. Mix everything together, then turn off the heat and stir the pecorino and parmigiano through.

Serve with an extra sprinkling of cheese.

Authors Note: The tomato-based amatriciana is a Roman favourite, although its origins lie in the Lazio town of Amatrice, hence the name. In Rome, unlike what might be served up outside of Italy, amatriciana is made with pecorino cheese, tomato and guanciale (cured pork cheek). My friend Eleonora is seven generations Roman (in Rome you aren't considered Roman unless your bloodline dates back at least seven generations!), and her amatriciana is to die for, yet she defies tradition by adding some Parmigiano Reggiano and a hint of chilli.

You can stick with her version, or play around with this to make it your own. Serve it with either rigatoni, mezze maniche or bucatini pasta.

The publisher is offering copies of this book two copies of this book to EYB Members in the US and two copies to members in Australia and New Zealand (4 books in total) One of the entry options is to answer the following question in the comments section of this blog post.

Which recipe in the index would you try first?

Please note that you must be logged into the Rafflecopter contest before posting or your entry won't be counted. For more information on this process, please see our step-by-step help post. Be sure to check your spam filters to receive our email notifications. Prizes can take up to 6 weeks to arrive from the publishers. If you are not already a Member, you can join at no cost. The contest ends at midnight on February 24th, 2018.

Honey & Spice - Sarit Packer and Itamar Srulovich

 

Bear with me, I'm a little giddy. Those two wonderfully kind people pictured above, Sarit Packer and Itamar Srulovich, are the married couple behind the wildly successful Honey & Co. Restaurant in London and are two of my favorite authors.

Their first cookbook, Honey & Co. Food from the Middle East was the Sunday Times Food Book of the Year in the United Kingdom in 2015. This debut book revolved around their restaurant which is known for fresh fruit and vegetables, wild honey, big bunches of herbs, crunchy salads, smoky lamb, bread straight from the oven, old-fashioned stews, Middle Eastern traditions, falafel, dips, and plenty of tahini on everything. 

Recipes include the above mentioned offerings and one-pan dishes, simple fragrant soups, rich Persian entrees, the tagines of North Africa, the Sofritos of Jerusalem, and the herb-infused stews of Iran and brings the flavors of the Middle East to life in a wholly accessible way, certain to entice and satisfy in equal measure.


Their second offering Honey & Co. The Baking Book covers both savory and sweet baked delights, with Middle Eastern flair, as well as a chapter on jams and breakfast items including egg dishes.  I am a huge fan of the savory aspect in baking, and this title offers much in that regard including Spiced cauliflower muffins and Butternut squash and Spice cheesecake. The muffins, perfect for a brunch, make quite the presentation with a cauliflower floret baked whole inside the muffin.

The Peach, vanilla & fennel seed mini loaves (my photo left) are a go-to treat for company. They are incredible and I only make them when we have guests as I cannot be trusted around them. They call to me from the counter and I am helpless to resist.  The scent of ripening peaches makes me pull out this book. Sarit and Itamar always bring something out of the ordinary to the table that will tempt our palates and add a new spark and creativity to our baking and cooking.

But the reason for this post and my giddiness is that their third book will be released this July by Pavilion Books. Honey & Spice: Food for Family & Friends take this talented duo out of their restaurant kitchens and into their home. Filled with  stories and food that mean the most to them, the book is written from the heart with affection for the food they love.

Honey & Co commented in their interview with Pavilion: "We feel so lucky with this book - it is a project we've been dreaming of for a while now, putting the recipes we cook at home in book form and being able to share these dishes, just as we do at home. Pavilion Books are a lot like Honey & Co - an independent company driven by a passion to make beautiful things, it is a natural connection and working with them on this book is an absolute joy."

What is even better is that there will be a fourth book coming! Sarit and Itamar's books are beautiful and the recipes are brilliant. I will keep you posted when pre-ordering is available and the cover is released!

Photo of Sarat and Itamar courtesy of Pavilion. 

Like browned butter? Try toasted cream

 ice cream

Browned butter's ability to transform the ordinary into the extraordinary is nothing short of a miracle. The complex flavor that develops by heating the milk proteins adds depth to a variety of goods both sweet and savory. As Sohla El-Waylly of Serious Eats shows us, this amazing transformation also works with cream

Of course, once you think about it you wonder why we haven't thought about it before. After all, butter is made from cream so it possesses the same luxurious fat. However, the extra liquid in cream makes it a bit more challenging to develop the Maillard reaction. With butter, the 15-20% additional liquid is easier to cook off, leaving only the fat and milk solids, which can then achieve the 300 degree Fahrenheit temperature where the Maillard reaction occurs quickly.

However, as El-Waylly notes, this reaction also occurs at lower temperatures, although it takes more time. Enter two kitchen appliances that allow you to either allow the cream to cook without keeping an eagle eye on it or bypass the wait altogether. The first of these is a sous vide device. Cooking the cream for a long time at a lower temperature brings out the nutty, caramel notes found in browned butter. Once browned, you can use the cream in any application you'd usually use it for, such as ice cream.

The other device is a pressure cooker. Cream cooked in this way gets even browner and takes on coffee and pretzel flavors, making it ideal to use in savory applications. Adding a pinch of baking soda (.25% by weight) to either application enhances the browning process and brings out additional flavors. The two cooking methods aren't direct substitutes for one another, but rather provide different flavor profiles.  

Made in Vietnam - Tracey Lister & Andreas Pohl

This week I am going to bring you several promotions on books that take you around the world with delicious bites in follow up to my Globetrotting through your cookbook library

First up, we have Made in Vietnam: Homestyle Recipes from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh by Tracey Lister and Andreas Pohl (a reissue of their 2014 title Real Vietnamese Cooking). This vibrant book shares recipes based on memorable meals eaten at street food stalls, family gatherings and countryside eateries. Three main culinary regions of the country are covered: the heart food of the north, dishes from the centre (in the tradition of the cuisine of the imperial city Hue), and the sweeter, spicier food of the tropical south. 

Tracey Lister is an Australian chef who runs the Hanoi Cooking Centre and her husband, Andreas Pohl, is a writer, researcher and educator with a keen interest in Vietnam's culture and social history. A decade ago Tracey set up KOTO, a grassroots social enterprise training street kids in cooking and serving. The couple have written two other cookbooks Vietnamese Street Food and KOTO: A Culinary Journey through Vietnam, both of which I just tracked down and had to order.

In Made in Vietnam the couple deliver an approachable, yet interesting, collection of recipes that includes staple Vietnamese dishes, such as Beef noodle soup (pho bo) and Banh-mi (I love Banh-mi) but also lesser-known recipes, such as Banana flower salad and Boiled jackfruit seeds. In addition to the recipes, we are offered different aspects of the country's food history and its various culinary influences, including those absorbed from French and Chinese cuisines. 

I just returned from the market with ingredients to make the Cabbage and chicken with Vietnamese mint this week. The Chicken sesame and jicama salad and Choko and barbecue pork salad are also on my must make list along with many others including this spectacular dish we are sharing with our members today. I love the fresh and light feel of some of the dishes making them perfect for quick weeknight meals.

The content in Made in Vietnam is appealing both to a novice cook, and one that is more experienced, making the book feel right at home on any cookbook lover's shelf.  Special thanks to Hardie Grant for sharing the showstopper recipe for Fried snapper in rice paper and for providing three copies of this beautiful book in our contest open to members in the US.

 

Fried snapper with rice paper
Cá chiên bánh tráng

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This dish is a fun and easy way to serve spring rolls: have your guests roll their own at the table. It fits in well with the communal spirit in Vietnam, where it is often prepared when entertaining guests at home. This recipe also works well with barbecued snapper.

  • 2 green bananas
  • 1 carambola (star fruit), sliced lengthways into 5 mm (1/4 inch) strips
  • 1 pineapple, not too ripe, peeled and cut into 5 cm (2 inch) batons
  • 50 g (1 3/4 oz / 1/3 cup) roasted unsalted peanuts
  • 1 x 600-700 g (1 lb 5 oz-1 lb 9 oz) snapper, gutted
  • rice flour, for dusting
  • vegetable oil, for deep-frying
  • TO SERVE
  • 1 handful coriander (cilantro)
  • 1 handful dill
  • 600 g (1 lb 5 oz) dried rice vermicelli
  • 18 rice paper sheets, about 18 cm (7 inches) in size
  • Classic dipping sauce (recipe below), to serve

Serves 6

Using a sharp knife, peel the outer layer of skin from each banana, leaving on a thin layer of the skin for texture. Cut the banana into thin strips and arrange on a platter with the carambola, pineapple and peanuts.

Rinse the fish in a bowl filled with salted water. Check for and remove any scales. Using kitchen scissors, cut off the fins and trim the tail. Dry the fish thoroughly with paper towel.

For the fish to cook evenly, make three cuts, about 1 cm (1/2 inch) deep, on each side. Dust the fish in the rice flour and shake off any excess flour.

Heat about 13 cm (5 inches) of oil in a wok or saucepan. To test the oil, place the tip of a wooden chopstick into the oil - when bubbles slowly rise to the surface, the oil is hot enough to use. Carefully slide the fish in and fry for 8-10 minutes, until the flesh is cooked through and the skin is golden and crisp. Remove and drain well on paper towel. Place the fish on a platter and top with the coriander and dill.

Meanwhile, soak the vermicelli in boiling water for 4-5 minutes. Gently stir to separate the noodles, then drain and refresh under cold water. Use kitchen scissors to cut the vermicelli into easy-to-manage lengths.

Soften the rice paper sheets by dipping them one at a time into warm water for 1 second. Do not soak the sheets as they will become too soft and tear when rolled. Place on a flat surface, wait for 20 seconds, then soak up any excess water with a clean cloth.

Invite your guests to take a sheet of the rice paper and top with the fish, noodles, herbs, fruit and peanuts, before rolling up into a spring roll and enjoying with the dipping sauce.

Classic dipping sauce
N c châm truyên thông
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  • 100 ml (3 1/2 fl oz) lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
  • 110 g (4 oz / 1/2 cup) sugar
  • 60 ml (2 fl oz / 1/4 cup) fish sauce
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 long red chilli, finely chopped

Serves 6

Combine the lime juice, vinegar and sugar in a small bowl. Stir until the sugar has completely dissolved.

Stir in the fish sauce, garlic and chilli and divide among six dipping bowls.

Recipe excerpted with permission from Made in Vietnam by Tracey Lister and Andreas Pohl, published by Hardie Grant Books August 2017, RRP $29.99.

 

The publisher is offering three copies of this book to EYB Members in the US. One of the entry options is to answer the following question in the comments section of this blog post.

Which recipe in the index would you try first?

Please note that you must be logged into the Rafflecopter contest before posting or your entry won't be counted. For more information on this process, please see our step-by-step help post. Be sure to check your spam filters to receive our email notifications. Prizes can take up to 6 weeks to arrive from the publishers. If you are not already a Member, you can join at no cost. The contest ends at midnight on February 19th, 2018.

Make cheese, not war

 cheese

Since the end of the Cold War, military weapons stockpiles have been shrinking in size. This reduction in arms means that huge storage facilities - many of them underground bunkers - are being decommissioned. While rich people are converting missile silos in the American Midwest to upscale doomsday prep condos, companies in Switzerland have found a much better use for them: aging cheese

Culture magazine bring us the report on cheesemaker Gourmino, which needed and expanded space to age thousands of giant Alpine cheeses such as Emmentaler and Gruyère in a humid-yet-cool environment. The company found the perfect location in a picturesque Swiss valley. A series of caves-turned-bunkers that formerly housed weapons had been decommissioned by the military and was sitting idle. The caves are ideally suited to aging cheese although they required a bit of retrofitting to become cheese storage facilities.

After two years of planning the Gourmino team went to work. The first order of business was clearing out leftover ordnance like old hand grenades, followed by blasting a tunnel to connect the separate chambers. Then they commissioned a local artisan to make 30,000 cheese aging boards out of the area's abundant spruce trees. The company constructed metal storage racks to hold the boards and wheels of Gruyère and Emmentaler.

Now over 6,000 wheels of cheese rest in the chambers, which have been designed with a concrete outer shell to protect the cellars from flooding while still allowing them to retain the high humidity needed to properly age the cheese. Wouldn't it be nice if all of the world's military storage spaces could be used for food rather than deadly weapons? 

January 15th - Kindle Deals

This week's Kindle deals post include cookbooks in the 99 cents to $4.99 range (or more where indicated). I have shared links that will take you directly to our Amazon affiliate page. Act quickly if any of these cookbooks interest you, as I 'm not sure how long they will remain on sale. Newer additions to this list begin at the top.

Globetrotting through your cookbook library

This weekend is one of administrative work but the urge to write had to be answered. While I believe my love of cookbooks started from wanting to be better than what had been drilled into me as a child, it blossomed due to my need to explore other cultures that interested me. I didn't want to become a close-minded recluse like both my parents were.

While I may never be able to visit all the spots I have marked on this wonderous globe, I can experience those areas through books that bring me into the lives and kitchens of these destinations. Today, I'll share a few books that can help check off places on our cookbook passports as well as books that will take us back in time historically.

A Taste of Adventure: A collection of recipes from around the world by Exodus Travels contains a selection of authentic recipes from Vietnamese pho to Spanish paella. The team at Exodus Travels, who take over 32,000 people on holiday around the world every year, curated this collection from the communities that were visited based on the data of traffic from their website. This book is a beautiful little tome filled with recipes and photos that will whet your appetite for adventure.


Palate Passport by Neha Khullar fits this post perfectly. The author traveled the world collecting experiences and food memories. The photographs are lovely and plentiful. The recipes each share an experience. For instance, the South Indian tomato chutney tells the tale of hotel breakfast in Mumbai and a French dinner in St. Martin inspired the Cauliflower shooters. We are lucky to experience these memories through Neha's beautiful narrative, and we can immerse ourselves further by creating these dishes and memories for ourselves in our own kitchen. We are indexing this book to bring you a full promotion.

Zoe's Ghana Kitchen: Traditional Ghanaian Recipes Remixed for the Modern Kitchen by Zoe Adjonyoh shares an updated collection of Ghanaian dishes for today's cook in this gorgeous book filled with beautiful photographs. Zoe lives in South-East London and her pop-up restaurant and supper club has been all the rage in the foodie scene both in London and Berlin. Recipes from Lamb cutlets with peanut sauce, Jollof fried chicken to a Honey & plantain ginger cake will have you craving Zoe's Ghanaian cuisine bringing the traditional flavours of Ghana to our kitchens. (for more books on Africa see this post). 


Tasting Georgia: A Food and Wine Journey in the Caucasus With over 80 Recipes
 by Carla Capalbo is a collection of recipes and gathered stories from food and winemakers in the stunning but little-known country. Both a cookbook and a travel guide to such a special place on the world's gastronomic map. It is a gorgeous book that captures the beauty of the area in photos and recipes. We are indexing this title to bring you a full promotion.

Taste of Persia: A Cook's Travels Through Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Iran, and Kurdistan by Naomi Duguid delivers another world to us by journaling her travels. The countries that encompass the Persian region while a mix of centuries old religions, cultures, and politics, are connected by food traditions. The food shines with jeweled pomegranates, the golden hues leached from saffron, and the bountiful fresh herbs that all add life and vibrancy to the meals of this region. I, for one, am grateful to Naomi Duguid, who for decades has been unearthing fascinating recipes and haunting tales from those areas of the world where most of us have not yet traveled. Taste of Persia contains 125 recipes, blanketed with narrative and photographs of the people and landscapes that bring this far-away world closer to the reader. To read more about this title and try two recipes, please see my review and recipe post.

The Jemima Code: Two Centuries of African American Cookbooks by Toni Tipton-Martin presents more than 150 black cookbooks that range from a rare 1827 house servant's manual, the first book published by an African American in the trade, to modern classics by authors such as Edna Lewis and Vertamae Grosvenor. The books are arranged chronologically and illustrated with photos of their covers; many also display selected interior pages, including recipes. This book is truly an historical masterpiece and must be in everyone's collection.

Michael W. Twitty's The Cooking Gene: A Journey Through African-American Culinary History in the Old South is also a must read on this important subject that is often overlooked.

Be sure you have entered our promotion on I Love India, a beautiful book about the warm, soulful food of India. More information and a recipe from that title can be found at the link indicated. 

A few other books to note:  We are indexing The Immigrant Cookbook: Recipes That Make America Great  by Leyla Moushabeck to bring you a full promotion. This book is everything that shares a diverse bounty of recipes by immigrant chefs from around the world. This title is a reminder of where some of the greatest culinary minds originated just as The Sioux Chef reminds us of the indigenous people whose country this originally was, and of course, still is. 

You can always explore regions that interest you here at Eat Your Books by typing in a location and see where you land. Other posts that share books that will bring you closer to the magnificent world that surrounds us include:

Update: As I was doing some work Monday morning, I came across a few other interesting titles: At the Table: Food and Family Around the World, Sweet Treats Around the World and Street Food From Around the World. I hope to bring you more information soon. 

Australian food blog awards announced

 Australian blogs

Just over a week ago, we learned the winners of the restaurant awards given by the Australian Good Food & Travel Guide. The AGFG has also announced its picks for the top 10 Australian food blogs

Several of the blogs are focused on restaruant reviews, like the Melbourne-based Eat and Be Merry. This blog is a group effort, featuring friends from Melbourne who love eating out collaborate together to write the articles, which features local restaurants as well as far-flung destinations. 

A few of the blogs also feature original recipes. Spooning Australia is the work of a single blogger, Jason King, who intersperses restaurant reviews amongst his own recipe creations. King describes himself as a "food loving, wine obsessed, restaurant indulging foodie" who has "embarked on a Brussels Sprout cooking odyssey with the goal of being known in the world as 'the Brussels sprouts guy.'" Other blogs with both recipes and reviews include FoodieLing and The Spice Adventuress.

You can see the full list at the AGFC website. Hat tip to EYB Member debkellie for the link. 

Grow Cook Nourish by Darina Allen


Darina Allen runs the world-renowned cooking school at Ballymaloe in County Cork, Ireland. She founded the school with her brother, Rory O'Connell, in 1983 and since then has authored many cookery books. Besides running the school with her brother, her daughter-in-law, Rachel Allen, also teaches there and lives nearby. 

The family connection travels back to when Darina (O'Connell then) started as a sous-chef at The Yeats Room at Ballymaloe House which was co-founded by well-known Myrtle Allen.   Darina ended up marrying one of Myrtle's sons and the rest is history.

Darina's newest cookbook Grow Cook Nourish: A Kitchen Garden Companion in 500 Recipes takes readers through the entire soil-to-table process that began over fifty years ago when Myrtle invited guests to 'Dine in an Irish Country House'. She opened the aforementioned Yeats Room in her family home serving fresh seasonal produce from husband Ivan's 300 acre farmland.

Darina and family continue Myrtle and Ivan's philosophy of using natural ingredients from the farm and local area which continues to earn Ballymaloe House and related Ballymaloe businesses world recognition as the best places for food in Ireland. Growing, feeding and nurturing runs through generations of Allens.

Growing your own food is exciting but, when it comes to knowing how to make the most of your produce can be overwhelming. This is where Grow Cook Nourish comes in - drawing on the author's 30 years of experience to make sure we reap what we sow.

This title shares an extensive list of vegetables, herbs and fruits with each entry including explanations of different varieties, practical information on cultivation, growing and maintenance, plus instructions for the best ways to cook produce as well as preserve it. With 500 recipes, including a variety for every ingredient, Darina shows how to use your harvest to its full potential. Vegetables range from annual crops such as chicory, radishes and kohlrabi to perennials like asparagus and spinach. Fruits cover apples, currants and peaches plus more the more unusual and interesting myrtle berries, loquats and medlars. Plus a comprehensive list of herbs, edible flowers and foraged foods such as samphire, wild garlic and blackberries fill out the book.

A gorgeous book for the gardener and cook in all of us. Special thanks to Kyle Books for sharing the Pad Thai recipe today with us and for providing two copies to our members in the US and UK (four copies total). Scroll to the bottom of this post to enter.





Pad Thai

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Romanesco or broccoli florets are a delicious and nutritious addition to this Pad Thai, the famous Thai noodle dish. Use organic ingredients where possible.

Serves 4 to 6

8 ounces rice noodles
1 tablespoon tamarind paste
2 tablespoons fish sauce (nam pla)
1½ tablespoons light brown sugar
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
¼ pound Romanesco or broccoli florets
¼ pound carrots, cut into julienne
⅓ cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons crushed garlic (about 5 cloves)
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
16 large wild shrimp, cooked and peeled
2 organic eggs, beaten
3 or 4 spring onions or scallions, sliced at an angle
2 ½ ounces fresh bean sprouts
3 tablespoons salted peanuts, roughly chopped

To garnish:
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
lime wedges
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
red pepper flakes (optional)


For the crispy onions:

4 to 6 small onions or shallots
sunflower oil, for frying

Put the noodles in a bowl, cover with water, and leave for about an hour.

To make the crispy onions, peel and slice the onions or shallots very thinly. Separate the rings and allow to dry for several hours.

Meanwhile, whisk the tamarind paste, fish sauce, sugar, lime juice, and 3 tablespoons of water in a bowl.

Blanch and refresh the Romanesco or broccoli florets and carrots in boiling salted water-3 minutes for the broccoli, 2 minutes for the carrots-until al dente.

To make the crispy onions, heat the oil to 350°F in a wok or deep-fat fryer. Deep-fry for 2 to 3 minutes until golden. Spread them out on paper towels in a single layer and let cool.

Drain the noodles.

Heat a wok over high heat, add the oil, and continue to heat until almost smoking. Add the garlic and ginger, toss quickly, then add the peeled shrimp and cook for 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate.

Add the noodles to the wok and stir-fry for a minute. Pour in three-quarters of the tamarind paste and fish sauce. Toss to coat the noodles, push to the side of the wok, and add the whisked eggs. Stir to scramble a little then add the shrimp, Romanesco or broccoli florets, carrots, spring onions, bean sprouts, and half of the salted peanuts. Add the remainder of the tamarind/fish sauce. Toss, taste, and correct the seasoning with more fish sauce and lime juice if necessary.

Divide among four shallow hot plates. Garnish with the remaining peanuts, cilantro sprigs, and a sprinkle of sesame seeds.

Serve each with a lime wedge and a sprinkling of crispy onions and red pepper flakes if you crave some extra oomph. Enjoy.

Excerpted from Grow, Cook, Nourish by Darina Allen, Published by Kyle Books, Photography by Clare Winfield.

The publisher is offering two copies of this book to EYB Members in the US and two copies to EYB Members in the UK. One of the entry options is to answer the following question in the comments section of this blog post.

Which recipe in the index would you try first?

Please note that you must be logged into the Rafflecopter contest before posting or your entry won't be counted. For more information on this process, please see our step-by-step help post. Be sure to check your spam filters to receive our email notifications. Prizes can take up to 6 weeks to arrive from the publishers. If you are not already a Member, you can join at no cost. The contest ends at midnight on February 17th, 2018.

René Redzepi prepares to open the new Noma

 Noma cookbooks

René Redzepi was living the dream: two Michelin stars plus many other accolades for a destination restaurant where you couldn't get a reservation for months. After sitting at or near the top of every worldwide restaurant ranking for several years, the chef closed the doors of Noma early last year and announced that he was moving the restaurant to a new location and completely revamping the menu. Why take such a risk? "Routine can be comforting, but it's also a killer for your creativity," Redzepi says. "It was time to change, not just the physical address but shedding off the old routine, moving into something new, building a small urban farm."

The new Noma will feature three menus, starting with seafood, rotating to vegetarian and then game. The restaurant will retain its focus on local, often foraged, ingredients and a Nordic sensibility. The new version of Noma is scheduled to open February 15. The first batch of reservations sold out in hours last November. Another around of reservations (for tables in May) opens at 4 p.m. local time on January 18.  Even though Redzepi has built the new space from the ground up, the restaurant only seats 40, plus about a dozen more in the private room. 

Although he is currently focused on opening the new Noma, Redzepi hasn't ruled out doing more popup restaurants. He has had incredibly well-received popups in Australia, Japan, and Mexico, but if you are waiting for one to come to the U.S. you'll have to be patient. The chef has no plans to come to the U.S. although he is eyeing other spots in Asia. 

Seen anything interesting? Let us know & we'll share it!

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