Tree of Life - Joy E. Stocke & Angie Brenner

When Tree of Life authors' Joy Stocke and Angie Brenner first met in a small resort town on the Mediterranean coast, they discovered a shared love of history, literature, and local food traditions. The two set off on a cultural adventure tour of Turkey that spanned ten years. Later, upon returning home to their respective American kitchens, they recreated the flavors of Anatolia and incorporated them into the food they cooked every day for themselves, family, and friends.

Based on the memoir Anatolian Days and Nights (which I just ordered on Kindle to start reading), Tree of Life: Turkish Home Cooking shares more than 100 approachable recipes inspired by Turkish food traditions found in the authors' travels. These thoughtful adaptations of authentic dishes draw on easily accessible ingredients while keeping true to traditional techniques. Recipes include Circassian chicken, Carrot hummus with Toasted fennel seeds, Spice-route moussaka, Weeknight lamb manti, Stuffed grape leaves, and Black Sea hazelnut baklava.

Beautiful photographs are peppered throughout the book along with interesting headnotes that make Tree of Life a wonderful read as well as a lovely cookbook. Special thanks to Burgess Lea Press for sharing the recipe for Tomato and walnut salad with pomegranate molasses with us today along with offering three copies for our contest open to EYB members in the US and Canada. Be sure to scroll to the bottom of this post to enter.

Tomato and walnut salad with pomegranate molasses
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Serves 4

The walnut tree and its luscious, oil-rich fruit can be traced back to Mesopotamia as early as 2000 BCE. Today, Turkey is among the world's top producers of both tomatoes and walnuts. Turkish cooks have long understood that pairing sweet yet acidic tomatoes with buttery walnuts make a delicious marriage of cultures.

This salad works with any fresh tomatoes in season, but it's more decorative with a mix of heirloom tomatoes in different sizes, hues and flavors. Add it to your meze table or serve as a side dish.

½ cup (60 g) coarsely chopped walnuts
3 medium red tomatoes, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses
¼ cup (60 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
½ cup (25 g) coarsely chopped flatleaf parsley


Put the walnuts in a single layer in a medium skillet over moderate heat. Stir the nuts continuously for 2 to 3 minutes until they become fragrant and turn a rich golden-brown. Set aside to cool.

Cut the tomatoes into bite-sized pieces and put them in a nonreactive serving bowl. If there is any tomato juice left on the cutting board, add it to the bowl.

In a separate small bowl, whisk together the pomegranate molasses, olive oil, salt and pepper.

Add the walnuts and parsley to the tomatoes and gently fold to combine. Drizzle the dressing over the salad and gently toss again to mix. Finish with a few more grinds of black pepper, if desired.

Recipe excerpted with permission from Tree of Life, published by Burgess Lea Press. February 2017. Photo credit Jason Varney

The publisher is offering three copies of this book to EYB Members in the US and Canada.  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 November 19th, 2017.

JapanEasy - Tim Anderson - Recipe and Giveaway

JapanEasy: Classic and Modern Japanese Recipes to (Actually) Cook at Home by Tim Anderson offers an introduction to the world of Japanese cooking via some of its most accessible dishes. Anderson's first book Nanban is killer, you can find more information on that title on my Friday Flashback.

In his new title, Anderson shares everything we need to know to make authentic Japanese food at home which, in turn, eliminates all the reasons ("excuses") that we come up with for not doing so. The photos are killer, the instructions spot on and the recipes and diagrams will have us all whipping out gyoza (including making our own wrappers) in no time.

Fried prawns with shichimi mayo, Japanese fried chicken, the Best miso soup, and Crab cream croquettes are a few examples of what you will find here. Also included are Sushi, Sukiyaki, Hot Pots and more with tips, tricks and Anderson's expertise to guide us.

Thanks to Hardie Grant for sharing the Curry udon recipe with our members and for providing three copies of this book in our contest below.

Curry udon (Kare udon)
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Serves 4

Difficulty: Supremely not difficult

Japanese curry and udon: a comfort food power couple. The addition of curry to hot udon doubles down on its warming, satisfying qualities - I love all kinds of udon, but this may be my favourite.

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 green chilli, very finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, very finely chopped
  • 1 red (bell) pepper, diced
  • 60 g (2 oz / 1/2 stick) butter
  • 6 tablespoons plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 45 g (1 3/4 oz) Madras curry powder (you can use hot or mild, or a combination of both)
  • 2 tablespoons garam masala
  • 1.2 litres (41 fl oz / 5 cups) chicken or beef stock, dashi, or any combination of the three
  • 4 tablespoons soy sauce, or more to taste
  • 4 tablespoons ketchup or Tonkatsu Sauce (see below)
  • salt
  • 1 sweetcorn cob, or 150 g (5 oz) tinned sweetcorn
  • 4 portions of udon noodles
  • 2 spring onions (scallions), finely sliced
  • 4 eggs, poached or soft-boiled
  • pinch of dried chilli flakes (optional)
  • 40-50 g (1 1/2 -2 oz) red pickled ginger (optional)
  • 50 g (2 oz) Cheddar cheese, grated (optional - but it's DELICIOUS)
  • toasted sesame seeds

Method

Heat the oil in a saucepan over a medium heat and add the onion. Cook until lightly browned, then add the chilli, garlic and red pepper. Continue to cook until the garlic has softened and the pepper has started to brown.

Remove the veg from the pan with a slotted spoon and reserve. Add the butter to the pan and let it melt, then whisk in the flour. Cook until the roux turns a light golden brown, stirring constantly. Add the curry powder and garam masala, reduce the heat to low and cook for a few minutes, stirring frequently. Add the stock or dashi in a thin stream, whisking constantly to prevent lumps, and bring to the boil. Add the soy sauce and ketchup or tonkatsu sauce and reduce to a simmer.

If using a sweetcorn cob, blanch in boiling water then cut off the kernels, or heat up the tinned sweetcorn in a saucepan or the microwave.

Cook the udon according to the package instructions, then drain and portion into deep bowls. Pour over the curry broth and top with the sweetcorn kernels, sautéed onion and pepper mixture, spring onions, eggs, chilli flakes, pickled ginger, cheese, if using, and sesame seeds.

Tonkatsu sauce 
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Makes about 600ml (20 FL OZ / 2 1/2 Cups)

Variations on this tangy-sweet, fruity-savoury, Worcestershire-like brown sauce - an essential flavour in dishes like okonomiyaki, takoyaki, tonkatsu and yakisoba - are incredibly common in casual modern Japanese cooking. I was running a cooking class a while ago in which I taught the students how to make this, and one of them said, upon tasting it, 'Oh! You taught us how to make brown sauce.' And so I did - tonkatsu sauce's flavour is remarkably British, sitting somewhere on the flavour spectrum between HP and Branston Pickle, but it has a few Japanese flourishes to enhance umami and sweetness. It also has a delightful affinity with mayonnaise.

By the way, there's no need to get too nerdy about this, but generally speaking this sauce should be made a little sweeter for okonomiyaki (more sugar), more acidic for tonkatsu (more vinegar/Worcestershire sauce), and thinner and more savoury for yakisoba (more soy sauce/Worcestershire sauce).

  • 200 ml (7 fl oz / scant 1 cup) Worcestershire sauce
  • 4 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons mirin
  • 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons vinegar (malt or rice, or a mixture)
  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  • 8 dates or about 3 tablespoons raisins, chopped
  • 1/2 Granny Smith apple, peeled and grated
  • 1 teaspoon hot mustard (English, Chinese or Japanese)
  • big pinch of garlic powder
  • big pinch of white pepper
  • 200 ml (7 fl oz / scant 1 cup) tomato ketchup

Method

Combine the Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, mirin, brown sugar, vinegar, onion, dates or raisins, and apple in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer. Cook for about 10 minutes, until the onion and dates or raisins are very soft. Add the mustard, garlic powder, white pepper and ketchup, transfer to a blender, and purée until smooth (then pass through a sieve if you want it really smooth).

Keep in an airtight container in the fridge indefinitely. PRO TIP: This is the best possible condiment for a sausage or bacon bap.

Recipe excerpted with permission from JapanEasy by Tim Anderson, published by Hardie Grant Books September 2017, RRP $29.99 hardcover.

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 November 17th, 2017.

Gâteaux - Christophe Felder & Camille Lesecq


Gâteaux: 150 Large and Small Cakes, Cookies, and Desserts
by Christophe Felder and Camille Lesecq is a masterpiece of pastry. This book is stunning and is on par with Felder's other titles such as Patisserie: Mastering the Fundamentals of French Pastry

Every page of Gâteaux invites a world of inspiration from stunningly perfect pastries, step-by-step technique photographs, detailed instructions and photos as lovely as the cake on the cover grace every page of the book.

Pastry level ranges from a Walnut and pecan sponge and Breton butter cookies to a spectacular Saint Honoré cake or Toulouse violet macaron cake with mixed berries.

The publisher, Rizzoli, is sharing the Bee sting cake recipe with our members today as well as providing one copy of this book to our members in the US. Be sure to enter our contest at the bottom of this post.

 

Bee sting cake (Alsace-lorraine) 
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This cake shares some characteristics of the Tarte Tropézienne, a specialty of St Tropez, but I'm pretty certain that the recipe is considerably older.  If you choose to give it a hint of 
the sunny south, flavor the pastry cream filling with orange flower water. In that case, do prepare it a few hours ahead so that the aromas can develop fully.

prep: 25 minutes
chill and freeze: 4 hours
cook: 20 to 25 minutes
serves 8 to 10

Simple brioche dough

  • 4 cups (1 lb. 2 oz. / 500 g) all-purpose flour, plus extra for the work surface
  • 1 ½ cakes (1 oz. / 30 g) fresh yeast
  • ¼ cup (2 oz., 50 g) sugar
  • 2 teaspoons (10 g) salt
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 2/3 sticks (10 oz. / 300 g) unsalted butter, softened and diced

Pastry cream

  • 1 cup (250 ml) whole milk
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons (3 g) skimmed powdered milk
  • ½ vanilla bean, seeds scraped
  • Scant ¼ cup (2 oz. / 60 g), about 3
  • ¼ cup (2 oz. / 60 g) sugar
  • 2 ½ tablespoons (1 oz. / 25 g) cornstarch


Bee sting cream

  • 2 ½ sheets (5 g) gelatin
  • 9 oz. (250 g) pastry cream
  • 1/3 cup (2½ oz. / 75 g) egg whites, about 2 ½
  • 2 tablespoons (1 oz. / 25 g) sugar
  • 2 teaspoons (10 ml) kirsch
  • 1/3 cup (90 ml) whipping cream, whipped to firm peaks
  • Almond-honey topping
  • Scant 1/3 cup (3½ oz. / 100 g) multi-floral honey
  • ½ cup (3 ½ oz. / 100 g) sugar
  • Finely grated zest of 1 unwaxed orange
  • 6 tablespoons (3 oz. / 90 g) butter
  • 1 cup (3 ½ oz. / 100 g) sliced almonds

Equipment: A 9-inch (23 cm) pastry ring or cutter

Make the brioche

1. Pour the flour into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle beater (or dough hook). Place the yeast on one side of the bowl and the sugar and salt on the other. Begin kneading at low speed as you add the eggs, one by one.

2. Increase the speed to high. Gradually add the diced butter and knead for a further 10 minutes, until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the sides of the bowl.

3. Cover the bowl with a clean cloth and refrigerate for 2 hours.

4. Dust the work surface lightly with flour. Weigh out 1 lb. 2 oz. (500 g) of the brioche dough, and roll it to a 9 ½-inch (24 cm) disk that is ¾ inch (2 cm) thick.

5. Cover with plastic wrap and return to the refrigerator while you proceed with the recipe. Use the leftovers to make yourself a small brioche!

Make the pastry cream

1. Bring the milk, powdered milk, and half vanilla bean and seeds to a boil in a saucepan over medium heat.

2. In a mixing bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the sugar until very smooth. Sift the cornstarch and carefully incorporate until smooth. Whisk a little of the hot milk into the mixture. Gradually pour in the remaining milk, whisking to combine. Return the liquid to the saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture comes to a simmer. Remove from the heat.

3. Immediately transfer to a mixing bowl and press a sheet of plastic wrap over the surface to prevent a skin from forming. Place in the refrigerator until cooled.

Make the bee sting cream

1. Soften the gelatin in a bowl of very cold water.

2. Whip the pastry cream briskly for 2 minutes until very smooth

3. Make the meringue: whisk the egg whites with the sugar until they hold a soft peak. Squeeze the water from the gelatin sheets. Warm the kirsch slightly in a saucepan or in the microwave oven and dissolve the gelatin in it. Spoon some of the pastry cream into the kirsch-gelatin mixture and whisk briskly. Scrape into a large mixing bowl and whisk in the remaining pastry cream. With a flexible spatula, fold in the meringue. Carefully fold in the whipped cream.

Make the almond-honey topping

1. Place a sheet of parchment paper on the work surface and have another sheet at hand.

2. In a saucepan over medium heat, heat the honey and sugar. Stir in the orange zest.

3. Stir in the butter and bring to a boil. Allow to boil for 1 minute.

4. Stir in the sliced almonds and mix to coat them well.

5. Pour the almond-honey mixture over the parchment paper and cover with the second sheet. With a rolling pin, roll it to a thickness of 1/8 inch (3 mm). Place in the freezer for 30 minutes.

6. Peel off the top layer of parchment paper and cut out a 9-inch (23 cm) disk. Return it to the freezer.

To assemble 

1. Place the firm almond-honey topping over the brioche dough disk. (If it is not firm enough, return it briefly to the freezer.)

2. Allow the dough to rise at room temperature for 1 hour 30 minutes.

3. Preheat the oven to 375°F (200°C).

4. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the sides and base are golden.

5. Allow to cool on a rack.

6. Cut the brioche in half horizontally. Spread a ½-inch (1 cm) layer of bee sting cream over it and place in the freezer for 30 minutes, until firm. Place the upper half of the brioche with the topping over the cream, pressing lightly so that it holds together. The cake is ready to serve!

 

The publisher is offering one copy 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 November 17th, 2017.

The Sportsman - Stephen Harris - Recipe and Giveaway

The resume of Stephen Harris might cause one to scratch one's head. How does a punk rocker, turned history teacher, then financial advisor end up a self-taught Michelin-starred chef? The author's incredible journey is told in his new stunner of a debut cookbook, The Sportsman, released last month by Phaidon. 

The Sportsman, the restaurant located in Kent, has earned a Michelin star every year since 2008 and was also voted number one gastropub in the UK. The Sportsman, the cookbook, blends age-old techniques with those of today to perfect 50 British classics just as Harris does at the restaurant.

Along with full page photographs, Harris profiles each of the key players at his restaurant from the front of the house to the pastry chef. Kent and the places that surround this region are prominent characters as well. The author strikes the perfect balance with a great story, profiles of the area and his team, stunning photographs and elegant recipes. 

Lamb breast and mint sauce, Wild blackberry lollies with cake milk, Crab, carrot and hollandaise, and Elderflower posset and fritter are a few examples of the recipes here, all with detailed instructions. The Sportsman is a stellar offering from the multi-talented Stephen Harris. Please remember Eat Your Book members receive 30% off Phaidon titles when using the link provided. 

Phaidon is sharing one of the dishes from this book for our members the Pork belly with applesauce. This dish has multiple components and will take some planning but is brilliant in its simplicity. Please be sure to scroll to the bottom of this post to enter our contest open to members in the UK, US, Canada, and Australia for a chance to win a copy for yourself.

Pork Belly and Applesauce

Serves: 8-10 as part of a tasting menu 

Ingredients

Pork belly
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1 x 2 kg / 4 lb 8 oz pork belly, bone in good handful of sel gris
3 liters / 100 fl oz (12 cups) duck fat
Apple sauce
Mashed potatoes, to serve
Sautéed cabbage or steamed spinach, to serve

Applesauce
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makes 600 ml / 20 fl oz (2 ½ cups)

2 large Bramley apples, unpeeled, quartered and cored
350 ml / 12 fl oz (1 ½ cups) sugar syrup

Mashed potatoes
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serves 6

5 medium potatoes
300 ml / 10 ½ fl oz (1 ¼ cups) double (heavy) cream
50 g / 2 oz (¼ cup) butter
1 teaspoon salt

Sautéed cabbage
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serves 4

1 Savoy cabbage (or another green cabbage), outer leaves discarded 
50 g / 2 oz (1/4 cup) butter 
lemon juice 
sea salt and pepper 

Instructions:

To make the Applesauce

To make the apple sauce, cut the apples into small chunks and put into a small food processor or jug blender. Pour in enough sugar syrup to almost cover the apples. Blitz on high until you have a smooth, bright green sauce.

To make the Mashed potatoes
Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF.

Roast the potatoes in their skins for 2 hours, then remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly. Cut the potatoes in half and scoop out the flesh (use rubber gloves if they are too hot). Press the potato flesh through a ricer into a mixing bowl. Heat the cream in a small pan and simmer for 5 minutes, taking care it doesn't catch on the bottom of the pan. Mix the hot cream into the potato then press it through a fine sieve. Mix in the butter then season with salt and serve.

To make the Sautéed cabbage

Cut the cabbage into quarters and discard the hard core sections. Cut into thin slices and wash.

Melt 20 g/3/4 oz of the butter in a lidded frying pan. Add the wet cabbage, cover the pan, and cook for 2 minutes over medium heat. Remove the lid and cook for around 2 minutes, or until the water has evaporated and the cabbage is soft, but still green. 

Add the remaining butter, then add lemon juice and seasoning to taste. Stir briskly to amalgamate, check the seasoning again, then serve.

To make the Pork belly

Sit the pork belly in a large roasting pan and rub the salt into the pork flesh. Put the pan into the refrigerator and pour in enough water to cover the mea completely. After 12 hours, take out of the refrigerator and pour away the water. Rinse well.

Preheat the oven to 100ºC/210ºF. Put the duck fat into a large pan and melt it slowly. Pour a layer of fat into the roasting pan and arrange the pork belly on top, skin side down. Pour in the rest of the fat and cover loosely with greaseproof (wax) paper. Cook for 12 hours.

After 12 hours, check that the pork belly is cooked by pulling at a rib bone. If it doesn't move freely, then return to the oven for another 20 minutes and check again.

Remove from the oven and leave to cool. You can strain off the duck fat to be used again. Transfer the pork belly to the refrigerator and leave overnight to set hard.

Remove the bones and trim the edges to create a neat rectangle. Keep the trimmings to make the pork scratchings.

Cut the belly in half down the middle and then divide into portions as you wish. We get 8-10 main course portions from one belly. Wrap the individual portions in clingfilm (plastic wrap) until they are needed.

When ready to serve, preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF and take the belly portions out of the refrigerator.

Arrange the belly portions in a non-stick, ovenproof frying pan and loosely cover with a baking paper. Roast for 20 minutes, then remove from the oven. If the skin isn't nicely browned, then finish on direct heat on the stove. Remember the skin is like glass: it will be gel like when hot, but will crisp up as it cools. Turn the portions over and leave to cool slightly before serving with applesauce, mashed potatoes and cabbage.

Adapted from THE SPORTSMAN by Stephen Harris (Phaidon, $49.95 US/59.95 CAN, September 2017) 

The publisher is offering three copies of this book to EYB Members in the UK, US, Canada and Australia. 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 November 16th, 2017.

Syria - Itab Azzam and Dina Mousawi

In Syria: Recipes from Home, Itab Azzam and Dina Mousawi, two food fanatics, bring the beauty and tenacity of the Syrian people to life within its pages. Despite incredible odds and harsh conditions, the people of this country still rejoice in the celebration of food and family.

The pair travelled across Europe and the Middle East meeting Syrian women, some who were living in tents, on the street or in one room apartments, but all were bravely fighting back against the destruction of their homes with the only way they know how through cooking. Following traditions and sharing dishes kept their sense of home alive. 

Throughout the book we meet these women - Hala, Tahani, Ahlam, Mona, Israa, Shaima, Fedwa, and Razan. We often see their stunning faces in photographs surrounded by the words of their escape from whatever hell they were living through and how their food memories and recipes kept them strong. Their favorite recipes and dishes are shared and for some there is no happy ending - just survival. 

The recipes are vibrant and approachable. The women are the same. While Syria is a cookbook and shares recipes such as Sweet stuffed pancakes, Turmeric cake, Freekeh with chicken, and Baba ganoush with minced lamb, the book shines in the narrative that reflects the indeliable spirit of the women of Syria.

Special thanks to the publisher for sharing one of the recipes from this truly spectacular book and for offering three copies in our contest opened to members worldwide. Scroll to the bottom of this post to enter. 

 

Za'atar flatbread
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(Mana'eesh)

SERVES 6

  • 3 tbsp za'atar
  • 5 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 x 320g pack of puff pastry
  • Fresh mint leaves, to serve
  • ½ tomato, diced, to serve


Preheat the oven to 160ºC/fan 150ºC/gas mark 3, then mix the za'atar with the olive oil.

Roll out the pastry and, using a pastry brush, spread the za'atar olive oil all over, leaving a 2.5cm border around the edges.

Bake in the oven for about 15 minutes until the pastry puffs up and turns golden brown.

Serve with fresh mint and tomato on top.

Recipe from SYRIA: Recipes from Home by Itab Azzam and Dina Mousawi, which is published by Trapeze in hardback and eBook. Photography by Liz and Max Haarala Hamilton.  

The publisher is offering three copies of this book to EYB Members worldwide. 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 November 15th, 2017.

Pantry and Palate - Simon Thibault

In the process of writing Pantry and Palate: Remembering and Rediscovering Acadian Food, Simon Thibault explored his roots and scoured old family recipes, ladies' auxiliary cookbooks, and folk wisdom to locate 50 of the best-loved recipes of Acadians past and present.

Recipes range from the art of pickling beets to old-fashioned foodways such as rendering lard and cooking with head cheese (this brings back memories of my grandmother and her butchering days), to staples like Classic French Canadian tourtière and Seafood chowder, along with a delicious assortment of desserts from Rhubarb custard pie to Acadian panna cotta. 

While this book is packed with lovely recipes the preserving chapter is my favorite - Salted green onions - who knew you could preserve green onions for up to a year. Thank you, Simon, for that technique! Pantry and Palate has an heirloom quality to it.  The chapters on preserving and homemade breads gives off a homespun feeling and the importance of family and traditions shines throughout its pages.

Including essays celebrating the stories behind the recipes, a foreword by bestselling author Naomi Duguid (Taste of Persia), and photos by noted food photographer Noah Fecks, this title is a lovely glimpse into Acadian cuisine. 

Special thanks to Nimbus for sharing a classic dish with our members today as well as providing two copies of this title in our contest open to members in the US and Canada. Scroll to the bottom of this post to enter. 

 

Les Dames Patronesses tourtiére
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Makes one pie - Serves 4 to 6

The first recipe is another of those I found in the Les Dames Patronesses collection. It is attributed to Mrs. Robert Belliveau and is a no-nonsense recipe. I've changed a little bit of the wording to make the directions a bit more clear. I'm somewhat surprised that it asks for veal, which isn't always the easiest meat to gain access to - let alone in 1960s rural Nova Scotia - but it adds much in terms of lusciousness to the finished pie.

For the filling:

  • 1 pound diced pork shoulder
  • 1/4 pound ground veal (or diced)
  • 3 tablespoons chopped onion
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon cloves
  • pinch of summer savoury
  • pinch of thyme

In a skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the pork, veal, and onions and cook about 25 minutes, stirring often. Season the mixture with with cloves, thyme, summer savoury, salt, and cinnamon. Taste for seasoning, and adjust if necessary. Allow to cool completely-preferably overnight-in the fridge before preparing the dough.

For the pastry:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 4 tablespoons ice-cold water

To make the pastry, measure the flour into a large bowl, then sift in the salt. Cut in shortening finely until pea-sized. Blend in cold water and mix with fork until the dough comes together. Wrap the dough in wax paper and refrigerate for 20 minutes. Divide the dough in two and roll each portion to 1/8-inch thickness. Place 1 layer on a 9-inch pie plate, fill with meat mixture, then cover with other layer of dough with cut eyelets.

Cook 10 minutes at 450˚F and then for 25 minutes at 350˚F.

Allow to cool slightly, about 30 minutes, before serving.

  • 1/4 pound butter, divided
  • 1 large onion, minced
  • 2 pounds of potatoes, diced into 1/4-inch cubes
  • at least one pound haddock, cut or shredded into pieces
  • at least one pound scallops
  • at least one pound lobster meat, shredded
  • 1/2 pound crab meat (optional)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons seafood seasoning/old bay seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salted onions
  • 500 ml blend cream (10%)
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped chives (optional)

In a large saucepan, melt 1/4 cup of the butter over medium-low heat. Add the onion, and cook until softened.  In a large pot, just barely cover the potatoes with cold water. Bring to a simmer and cook until they are about two-thirds done. You should be able to pierce them with a fork, but not all the way through.

In another skillet, warm up the shredded lobster in the remaining 1/4 cup of butter. Add a touch of paprika for colour, the seasoning, and then the cream. Bring the potatoes down to a gentle simmer, and add the haddock. Cook for 1 minute. Then add the lobster and cream.

Add the scallops, crab meat if available, and the salted onions. Bring the temperature to low, just enough to keep it warm.

Serve immediately, garnished with fresh chives. And don't forget to have buttered rolls or bread on the table.

Excerpted from Pantry and Palate by Simon Thibault © 2017, Text by Simon Thibault. ©2017, Photographs by Noah Fecks. All rights reserved. Published by Nimbus Publishing

 

The publisher is offering three copies of this book to EYB Members in the US and Canada. 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 November 13th, 2017.

Eat Right by Nick Barnard Recipe and Giveaway

Nick Barnard is the co-founder of the London-based company Rude Health which produces oatmeal, granola, muesli, and snacks as well as grain and nut milks. In Barnard's debut cookbook Eat Right: The Complete Guide to Traditional Foods, with 130 Nourishing Recipes and Techniques (previously released in the UK in 2016), he shares techniques for making pantry staples and fermented foods along with recipes from a Frittata with wild garlic and shiitake mushrooms to an Apple cobbler. 

Eat Right is beautifully photographed and while the dishes here are certainly good for you, they are crave worthy and comforting, as well.  Barnard uses a great deal of seed, nuts, legumes and grain sprouts in his recipes as well as touting that "pig fat is wonderful". He states, "good lard from pastured happy pigs, like good buttter from pastured contented cows, is in reality more of a health food when reintegrated into our cooking and our eating habits in the style of our ancestors." Amen to that! 

Tomorrow is a cooking day and I'm making the author's Onion soup along with that Vegetable biryani from earlier this week, my house will smell amazing.

I am always on the lookout for a great bagel and Kyle Books, the publisher, is graciously sharing Nick's recipe for Honey-crust sprouted spelt bagels with our members today. The publisher is also offering three copies of Eat Right to our US members in the giveaway below - scroll down to enter.

Honey-crust sprouted spelt bagels
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MAKES 8

  • 1 2/3 cups freshly filtered water
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon fresh yeast
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons unrefined cane juice sugar, jaggery, or coconut palm sugar
  • 4 cups sprouted spelt flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fine sea salt
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey
  • Raw or toasted poppy or sesame seeds (optional)

BAGELS ARE THE EVER-POPULAR SHINY, CHEWY, ring-shaped bread rolls that have a rather unusual genesis, as they are boiled (poached really) as well as baked. Bagels are of course associated with Jewish communities, especially in New York City, known for their perfect pairing with cream cheese and lox (cured salmon). Their origins can be traced back some 500 years to Poland where they were a staple of the region. The hole in the middle? It's practical-the dough cooks more evenly throughout, and for the baker, it was, traditionally, a novel way to display and sell bagels either in rows on a stick or strung up on a length of string.

Most bagels are made with highly refined wheat flour, which is high in gluten and lacks the coarse bran or germ. At best they are made more nourishing and digestible if the dough is fermented overnight but there's no doubt that their addictive, sweet, tender (when fresh), dense, and chewy texture is derived for the most part from the use of refined wheat flour and refined sugars, making them unsuitable for the increasing numbers of gluten-sensitive and gluten-intolerant individuals, let alone those wanting to avoid refined sugar.

This recipe manages to combine the best of both worlds; by using sprouted spelt flour and unrefined, or wild, sugars, the amount of gluten is reduced, the digestibility and nourishment are improved, yet you can still have your chewy, crusty mouthfeel and superior flavors. You want convenience too? It's right here. Made with sprouted flours complete with their readily available nutrients, including simple sugars rather than starch, these bagels do not require proofing overnight.

Spelt. So what's all the excitement? Spelt is closely related to wheat, and therefore contains gluten, but, crucially, less gluten than wheat. Spelt is an ancient hybrid, and until about 150 years ago, it was the bread grain of choice in Europe since antiquity. Replaced in the last century by more recent wheat hybrids, spelt is making a welcome return in popularity, especially in organic farming, as it's less dependent on the use of artificial fertilizers. Spelt has a far more interesting flavor profile than wheat; it's nuttier, and sweeter too, and for those sensitive to gluten, spelt can often be tolerated.

Activate

Pour 1/2 cup of the water into a small bowl, crumble in the yeast, and sprinkle with the sugar. Leave for 5 minutes, then stir to dissolve.

Mix the flour and salt together in a large bowl. Make a well in the center of the flour and pour in the yeasted water. Pour in the remaining water and then mix to form a firm, moist dough.

Knead and let rise

Turn the dough onto a well-floured work surface. Knead until smooth and elastic, which will take about 10 minutes. As you knead the dough, feel for its texture. You need this dough to be quite stiff and firm. If it's too moist, gradually knead in some more flour.

Wipe the inside of a bowl with some olive oil, then roll your dough around the inside of the bowl. Place the dough in the bowl and cover with a cloth. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, which will take about 1 hour.

Punch down the dough, then let rest again for 10 minutes.

Shape and rest

Scrape the dough out of the bowl and return it to a lightly floured work surface. Cut into 8 equal-sized pieces and shape each piece into a ball. Poke a floured finger into and through the center of each one to form a ring.

Place the bagels on a lightly (olive) oiled baking sheet, cover with a damp cloth, and let rest for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat your oven to 425°F.

Poach

Bring a large, wide pan of water to a boil, reduce the heat to a simmer, and then add the honey.

Use a slotted spoon to lower the bagels carefully into the honeyed water, 2 or 3 at a time.

Boil each batch of bagels on one side until they rise to the surface and puff up, then turn each one over and remove them once they rise to the surface again.

As you remove the bagels, let them drain well. If you are coating them in seeds, this is the time to do it. Put the seeds in a shallow bowl and dip the top of each bagel lightly into seeds.

Bake

Return the drained bagels to the lightly oiled baking sheet. Transfer to the oven and bake for 20 minutes, turning once, or until golden and shiny. Let cool on a wire rack.

Bagels are at their best within 2 or 3 days of baking, when fresh. They do freeze well. Slicing into two half rings before freezing is recommended.

Recipe excerpted from Eat Right, by Nick Barnard, published by Kyle Books. Photography by Jenny Zarins

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 November 12th, 2017.

Cakes by Melissa - Recipe and Giveaway

A chapter entitled "You're Amazing and You Can Do Anything" is how Cakes by Melissa: Life Is What You Bake It: 120+ Recipes for Cakes, Icings, Fillings, and Toppings for Endless Flavor Combinations by Melissa Ben-Ishay opens. Every morning when Melissa's father took her to school, he told her "You're amazing and you can do anything that you set your mind to. Today is going to be the best day."

This story hit me hard. While my struggles with my son over the last year are no secret and have nothing to do with cake - except for the fact that Andrew loves cake more than he loves me - this was a wake up call. No matter how tough things are or how difficult our children can be - they are amazing and should be told daily. So right off the bat, thank you, Melissa, for sharing the great wisdom of your father's words.

Melissa has always loved cake, but cake as a vehicle to earn a living - could that work? When she called her brother to tell him she had been fired from her job in social media, he told her to "go home and bake cupcakes".  (The men in her family are so wise.) The rest is history and is shared in The Baked by Melissa Story chapter.

Cakes by Melissa is vibrant, enjoyable and full of sugary delights that will be sure to please.  Peanut butter cup cupcakes and chocolate peanut butter cake (Andrew wants this cake now!), a Rainbow cookie cake (we love Italian rainbow cookies in our house so this recipe grabbed my attention), Neopolitan cake and a Cereal cake are examples of recipes you will find here. Toppings, icings (pretzel icing anyone?), batters, ultimate flavor combinations (Melissa is the queen of exciting flavors) and more are shared and are guaranteed to make any baker happy. I am gobsmacked by all the possibilities in this title! Melissa has some book tour dates scheduled that we have added to our calendar

Special thanks to the author and William Morrow for sharing the following recipe components for the Berry cake. The publisher is also offering three copies of this book to our members in the US and Canada. Be sure to scroll to the bottom of this post to enter.

Berry cake
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Cake: Classic Vanilla Cake
Fillings: Whipped vanilla icing and mixed fresh berries
Icing: Whipped vanilla Icing
Toppings: Mixed fresh berries, fresh mint sprigs, and confectioners' sugar

Ingredients:

  • 1 recipe Classic Vanilla Cake
  • 1 recipe Whipped Vanilla Icing
  • 2 to 3 cups mixed fresh berries (whatever's in season)
  • Fresh mint sprigs, for garnish
  • Confectioners' sugar, for dusting

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter a 13 x 18-inch half- sheet pan, then line it with wax paper or parchment and butter the paper.

2. Mix the cake batter according to the recipe directions. Pour into the prepared pan and bake until the middle of the cake feels springy when you gently press your finger against it, 35 to 40 minutes.

3. Set aside to cool completely. Meanwhile, make the whipped vanilla icing and stash it in the freezer until you're ready to frost the cake.

4. Use a 6-inch round cutter to cut three rounds from the cake. Place one cake layer on a turntable and thickly frost the top with about a third of the vanilla icing; spread the icing out just over the edge of the layer. Spoon a few tablespoons of fruit on top. Repeat with the remaining layers, until reaching the final layer.

5. Generously top the cake with the remaining mixed berries. Garnish with the sprigs of mint and lightly dust with confectioners' sugar.

Classic Vanilla Cake
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Ingredients 

  • ½ pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, plus more for greasing the pan
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1¾ cups whole milk (or buttermilk; let the cup overflow a bit)

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter the pan of your choice or line the pan with wax paper or parchment and butter the paper. This will make the edges less crispy.

2. With a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, whip the butter for 1 minute on high speed, then scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula. Add the sugar and beat on high speed for 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl again.

3. Add the vanilla extract. While mixing at medium-low speed, add the eggs one at a time. Scrape down the edges of the bowl midway through.

4. Combine the flour, baking powder, and sea salt in a separate bowl.

5. With the mixer on low speed, add half the flour mixture. When it's mostly incorporated, add half the milk. Add the remainder of the dry and wet ingredients, scraping down the sides of the bowl between additions. Stop mixing as soon as you have a smooth batter.

6. Take the paddle attachment off the mixer and lick the batter-it should be delicious!

7. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until the middle of the cake feels springy when you gently press your finger against it. All ovens are different, so it's important to do the fingerprint test to see if the cake is done.

Whipped Vanilla Icing
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Ingredients

  • 2 cups heavy cream, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ½ cup confectioners' sugar

Directions

1. If possible, chill the bowl and the whisk attachment of a hand or stand mixer for at least half an hour before using. All of your ingredients should be cold.

2. Pour the cream, vanilla, and sugar into the chilled bowl and whip on high speed until stiff peaks form, about 2 minutes.

The publisher is offering three copies of this book to EYB Members in the US and Canada. 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 November 11th, 2017.

Dinner & Party - Rose Prince

Rose Prince is a UK food writer, cooking teacher and cookbook author who has been bestowed this praise by Nigel Slater: "Every kitchen needs a Rose." I am in agreement after reviewing her latest book, Dinner & Party Gatherings Suppers Feasts.

In Dinner & Party, the author shares a collection of practical recipes that are ideal for entertaining along with concrete advice to guarantee stress-free enjoyable dinner parties and celebrations.

The litmus test for measuring the success of a dinner party, writes the author, is that that the party-giver enjoyed their day as much as the guests. So that we pass this test, she guides us through the basics of timing and preparation along with scrumptious recipes and gorgeous photographs. 

Rose covers it all and brilliantly - Pigeon breasts with figs and pearl barley; Lemon risotto, Crispy potato cakes with garden peas and lettuce sauce, and the classic Cassoulet - are examples of the dishes here. There is aVegetable biryani with coconut baked under a pie crust that looks like a show stopper. I stopped today in the snow (yes, it is already snowing in Colorado) and bought all the ingredients to make this dish this week. I'll be adding my photograph later and I am hoping it looks a fraction of how amazing Rose's does. (Updated with my photo - the recipe is incredible!)

Also included are several menus for various party themes - Persian Feast, Indian Feast and Summer Lunch as well as holiday menus and recipes, incredible looking desserts and more. Everyone who loves to entertain needs this book - it is a must have and beautifully done. 

Special thanks to Seven Dials for sharing the recipe below for our members as well as providing three copies of this beautiful book for our members, worldwide. Be sure to scroll down to enter our giveaway. 

 

Pork, duck and pistachio terrine 
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Adaptable through the seasons and easy enough for large numbers, I love to make baked terrines like this one. They look so 'brown' in the pot after baking but when you cut that first slice, to reveal a mosaic of shell-pink and buff-coloured meats threaded with nuts and/or preserved fruits, it feels like just reward for the initial patience needed to 'build' the terrine. It is very important to buy free-range pork mince and meat for a terrine, because intensively reared pork releases a white liquid during cooking, overly shrinking the terrine.

Think of the following recipe as a 'blueprint', which can be modified through the seasons - see the options opposite.

Serves: 6-8

Serving dish: 1-litre terrine dish or loaf tin


  • 30g butter
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 large shallot, chopped
  • 300g pork shoulder meat, cut into 1cm chunks
  • 500g pork mince
  • 1 tsp thyme leaves
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp fresh ground black pepper
  • 60ml port
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 30g softened butter, for greasing
  • 16 slices pancetta
  • 6 soft dried figs, halved
  • 70g unsalted pistachio nuts
  • 1 x 200g duck breast, or two smaller ones, cut into long strips along the grain of the meat
  • 2 bay leaves
To serve:
  • bowl of pickle or chutney
  • cornichons (pickled baby gherkins)
  • hot toast and butter
Preheat the oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/400°F/Gas 6. Melt the butter in a pan and add the garlic and shallot. Cook for 2 minutes over a medium heat until soft, cool for a few minutes then put in a bowl with the pork, the thyme, salt, pepper and port. Leave to marinate for 1 hour then mix in the egg.

Rub the inside of the terrine dish with the softened butter then line it neatly with 12 of the pancetta slices, laying them side by side across the width of the dish and allowing them to hang down the outer side, ready to wrap around the contents later. Pack one half of the marinated pork mixture into the terrine.

Push half of the fig halves into the pork mix in the terrine - so that they run in a line the length of the dish - then do the same with half of the pistachios. Next, lay the duck breast strips lengthways along the dish. Cover with a 1cm-layer of the pork mix then another line of fig halves and the remaining pistachios. Finally, cover with the remaining pork mix, heaping it higher in the centre of the terrine to make a loaf shape.

Place the bay leaves on top, then bring the pancetta (hanging down the side of the dish) up and over the contents, wrapping them. The terrine is now ready to bake.

Cover the dish with a lid or foil and place it in a roasting tin containing 3cm of boiling hot water. Bake for 1¼-1½ hours until the meat has shrunk a little from the side of the dish. Add more water to the pan if it evaporates during cooking.

Remove the terrine from the oven and leave to cool. You will notice how the juices around the meat are reabsorbed as it cools. Chill until needed, wrapped in foil.

To serve, use a spatula to lift the terrine out of the dish. With a very sharp carving knife, cut a 2cm-thick slice for each person. Serve with hot buttered toast and pickles.

Options: For duck, use lean skinless fillets of any game bird, venison loin, chicken, rabbit, pork loin or the cheaper tenderloin or wild boar. For pistachios, use walnuts or hazelnuts; for dried figs, use dried plums; for port, use wine, cider, gin or sherry. Apple juice can also be used in place of alcohol. 

Recipe is from Rose Prince's Dinner & Party Gatherings Suppers Feasts. Published by Seven Dials. Photography (c) Matt Russell* 

 

The publisher is offering three copies of this book to EYB Members worldwide. 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 November 9th, 2017.

A Grandfather's Lessons - Recipe and giveaway

In my conversation with Jacques Pépin last month, one of our topics was A Grandfather's Lessons and the joy he experienced creating this book with Shorey. The recipes or lessons contained in this book range from fast but elegant, easy to sophisticated that young and old can both appreciate. The recipe for Arctic Char that we are sharing with our members today takes a few minutes but presents beautifully. On the other end of the spectrum is something playful, a curly dog which is a hot dog with slits that fries up in a pan.

To accompany some of the recipes in this beautiful book are 36 videos - each 10 to 12 minutes long - that can be found on Sur la Table - the links are set forth below each recipe in the book. Jacques, Shorey and Claudine will be touring for A Grandfather's Lessons and you can find their scheduled events on our calendar.

Special thanks to the publisher for sharing a recipe today with our members and for offering three copies of this special book for our members in the US. Please scroll to the end of this post to enter.

Arctic Char with Tomato
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Serves 2

In this recipe I cook a fillet of Arctic char on the skin side only in a nonstick pan. This recipe also works well with trout. The sauce is a raw tomato puree made in a blender and seasoned with salt, pepper, and olive oil. (It can also be used for pasta or as a summer soup, in which case it should be doubled.)

The pan should be preheated for about 1 minute so it is hot when the fish is placed in it.

Covering the fish during cooking creates steam, which allows the char to cook on top without being turned, and the hot pan delivers a crusty skin without the addition of oil or butter. This dish should be prepared at the last minute because the fish takes only a short time to cook.

Sauce

1 ripe tomato (about 6 ounces), stem and core removed, cut into 1-inch pieces
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1½ tablespoons best-possible olive oil 

Fish

1 Arctic char fillet (about 12 ounces and ¾ inch thick at the thick end)
1 teaspoon olive oil teaspoon salt

For the sauce: Place the tomato pieces in a blender and process for 15 to 20 seconds, until well pureed. Add the salt, pepper, and oil, and process for another 10 seconds. Set aside.

At cooking time, cut the fillet into 2 pieces. Rub the skin with the oil and sprinkle with the salt. Heat a 10-inch nonstick skillet over high heat for about 1 minute. Place the fish pieces skin side down in the skillet, cover, and cook over high heat for about 3 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and continue cooking the char in the residual heat for about 1 minute.

Meanwhile, heat the sauce in the microwave until warm, about
1 minute. Divide it between two dinner plates, and place the fish skin side up in the sauce. Serve immediately.

To see how it's done, go to www.surlatable.com/jacquespepin

 

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 make sure you 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 November 8th, 2017.

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