Tips on choosing the right flour


If you aren't already a dedicated baker, you may only have one or two types of flour in your pantry. When you do decide to dip your toe into the waters of breads, cakes, and pastries, the numbers of different flours can be overwhelming, and using the wrong flour can lead to lackluster results. To help you avoid baking disaster, Becky Krystal at The Washington Post provides a handy guide on how to choose the right flour for your baking needs

Her guide is a very basic one, focusing on the differences between all-purpose flour (aka plain flour) and other varieties such as bread flour (aka strong flour), whole wheat (wholemeal) flour, cake flour and pastry flour. The main differences between the white flours are the amounts of protein found in each type. The strength of the protein is related to the amount of gluten produced when the flour is mixed with a liquid. More gluten leads to more chew, so you'll want to save the higher-protein flours for things like rustic breads and use the lower-protein flours for delicate items like cakes and pastries. 

Of course there are many other types of non-wheat flours (which have less or no gluten, depending on the type), and specialty flours like Italian 00 flour. Nigella Lawson provides a good explanation of the latter. The 00 flour "has a fairly high gluten (protein) level but the gluten in durum is not the same as that found in regular wheat in most western countries. So the gluten in durum does not strengthen as much when liquid is added or when the dough is kneaded and the resulting dough is not as tough." That's why Italian 00 flour makes good pasta, says Nigella. 

There are websites dedicated to non-traditional flours used in gluten-free baking, such as the indexed blog Gluten-Free Girl by Shauna James Ahern and Daniel Ahern. Other sites explore the interesting flavors, textures, and purported health benefits of flours made from ancient grains and other plants. For example, author Nadia Lim has a guide to using non-wheat flours on her blog.

For an in-depth analysis of the many alternative flours, you might want to try one of several cookbooks that dive into the details. Some of our favorites are Flavor Flours by Alice Medrich, The Homemade Flour Cookbook by Erin Alderson, and The Gluten-Free Almond Flour Cookbook by Elana Amsterdam. We're also eyeing the upcoming Flour: From Grains and Pulses to Nuts and Seeds by Christine McFadden, which will be released in May.

Chef's Table: Pastry

Netflix's Emmy-nominated "Chef's Table" returns on April 13, and this time they are taking a sweet turn with a look inside the world of internationally recognized pastry chefs. "Chef's Table: Pastry" follows four different chefs and their unique specialties. The trailer for this series has me excited!

From the official description: "'Chef's Table: Pastry' goes inside the lives and kitchens of the world's most renowned international pastry chefs. Each episode of the four-part series focuses on a single chef and takes a unique look at their life, talent, and passion, from their piece of culinary heaven. Dessert is front and center as viewers learn the history behind Christina Tosi's wildly popular and accessible 'Crack Pie;' are treated to luxurious Italian gelato with Corrado Assenza; take in the essence of a tropical paradise with Will Goldfarb; and gain inspiration from Jordi Roca's whimsical masterpieces."

So you are prepared for this series, make sure you have these pastry icons' cookbooks ordered and ready! 

Will Goldfarb's Room for Dessert will be published April 6th by Phaidon. Please remember that members of Eat Your Books receive a 30% discount when ordering Phaidon titles using this link. I've previewed the electronic version and it is stunning and can't wait to get my hands on the hard copy.

Christina Tosi's newest title All About Cake will be published on October 23rd by Clarkson Potter. Milk Bar Life and Momofuku Milk Bar, her previous titles are indexed for our members and favorites of mine. 

Jordi Roca's The Desserts of Jordi Roca: More Than 80 Sweet Recipes and El Celler de Can Roca are both inspirational and elegant. The first of course deals just with desserts while the second is mostly savory. 


Tasting Georgia by Carla Capalbo

Award-winning food writer and photographer Capalbo has traveled Georgia collecting recipes and gathering stories from food and winemakers. She brings this stunning but little-known country to life in Tasting Georgia: A Food and Wine Journey in the Caucasus. This title won the prestigious André Simon Award as well as a nomination for an IACP cookbook award.

The beautifully illustrated book is both a cookbook and a cultural guide to the personal, artisan-made foods and wines that make Georgia such a special place on the world's gastronomic map. Georgian cuisine is unique, but also carries some influences from other European and nearby Middle Eastern culinary traditions. Each historical province of Georgia is distinct but with variations from Megrelian, Kakhetian, and Imeretian cuisines.

Nestled between the Caucasus Mountains and the Black Sea, and with a climate similar to the Mediterranean's, Georgia has colorful, delicious food. Vegetables blended with walnuts and vibrant herbs, subtly spiced meat stews and home-baked pies like the irresistible cheese-filled khachapuri are served at generous tables all over the country which is known for its supra. A supra is a traditional Georgian feast and an important part of their social culture where food, wine and music come together. There are two types of supra: a festive supra, called a keipi, and a somber supra, called a kelekhi, that is always held after burials.

Georgia is also one of the world's oldest winemaking areas, with wines traditionally made in qvevri: large clay jars buried in the ground.

When I met Carla at the IACP awards, she shared a photograph of the qvevri (image to the right) that is also featured in the book. We spoke briefly and she mentioned that it was through her love of wine (and food) that she became fascinated by Georgia's cuisine and wine making.

Tasting Georgia digs deep into the history, cuisine, wine and people of this beautiful country. I started reading these stories and find myself lost in the experience.

There are 65 recipes here that are simple and approachable. Spicy ribs from the Diaroni restaurant that can be made with veal or pork ribs, Chicken and walnut stew that has a creamy appearance which comes from the walnuts, and Cheesy cornbread which is a great addition to the supra table are examples of the variety of dishes. While the recipes are compelling, the history and photographic journey through Georgia is enough to curb my wanderlust.

Special thanks to Interlink and Pallas Athene Publishers for sharing a recipe with our members and for offering copies of this book in our contest below.


Chicken with pomegranate juice / katami brotseulit
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"My mother used to make this without browning the chicken first, but I prefer the rich flavour you get from the chicken's browning juices," says Meriko. "Georgian pomegranates are both sweet and sour, and have good tannic structure and acidity, so if yours taste too sweet, add a firm squeeze of lemon to the dish to bring back its zest. The origins of this dish are Jewish, and it's very easy to make."

Serves 6

Preparation 15 minutes

Cook 45 minutes

1 kg / 2 lb chicken pieces, with some skin left on
flour for dredging
3 tbsp sunflower oil
200 g / 7 oz / 1½ cups chopped onion 1 tsp coriander seeds, crushed
½ tsp dried summer savory or mild thyme, or 1 tsp fresh
2 bay leaves
240 ml / 8 fl oz / 1 cup water
360 ml / 12 fl oz / 1½ cups fresh pomegranate juice
the seeds of 1 pomegranate
salt and freshly ground black pepper

Dredge the chicken pieces lightly in flour, shaking off any excess. Heat the oil in a sauté pan large enough to fit all the chicken in one layer. Brown the chicken on all sides over medium heat, turning once or twice, about 12-15 minutes.

Stir in the onion and cook with the chicken for 5 minutes or until the onion starts to soften. Add the coriander seeds, herbs, water and half of the pomegranate juice, stirring well. Season with salt and pepper. Bring to the boil, lower heat and simmer for 30 minutes, turning the chicken occasionally, until the juice runs clear when a knife is inserted in the thickest part of the chicken.

Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining pomegranate juice. Check the seasoning. Sprinkle with the pomegranate seeds and a few leaves of fresh thyme before serving.

Recipe from Tasting Georgia© Carla Capalbo 2017 Interlink Publishing 



The publishers are offering four copies of this book to EYB Members in the US and UK (two for each region). 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 April 25th, 2018.

Work begins on Modernist Pizza

 Modernist Bread

It took six years for Nathan Myhrvold to follow up his groundbreaking world Modernist Cuisine with Modernist Bread, which was published last year. You might expect Myhrvold to rest for a bit, but he's already at work on another project titled Modernist Pizza

In an announcement on the Modernist Cuisine website last Saturday, the team announced that Myhrvold and Francisco Migoya, who co-authored Modernist Bread, along with the rest of the Modernist Cuisine team, "are busy conducting extensive research, testing long-held pizza-making beliefs, and working to understand the differences between different styles of pizza (as well as the best ways to make each one)."

The team wanted to include pizza in Modernist Bread, but since the book was already a whopping 2,600 pages, they didn't feel they could do the subject justice without greatly expanding the book. They did include a couple of recipes for pizza  in that book, but in the new one they will expand  to cover all aspects of the genre, including thick and thin crusts, toppings, types of ovens, and more. 

We can expect the same level of research and detail for this book that made up the previous comprehensive (and expensive) multi-volume editions. No release date was set in the announcement, but if you just can't wait for a slice of Modernist Pizza, you can order a few limited-edition photographs now. 

Guerrilla Tacos by Wesley Avila

Guerrilla Tacos: Recipes from the Streets of L.A. by Wes Avila draws on his Mexican heritage as well as his time in the kitchens of some of the world's best restaurants to create taco perfection in this his debut book.

Los Angeles is known for its wealth of taco trucks and somehow Avila's Guerrilla Tacos has managed to win almost every accolade there is, from being crowned Best Taco Truck by LA Weekly to being called one of the best things to eat in Los Angeles by LA Times food critic Jonathan Gold.

The native Angeleno's approach stands out in a crowded field because it's unique; the 50 base recipes in this book are grounded in authenticity but never tied down to tradition. He uses ingredients like kurobata sausage and sea urchin, but his bestselling taco is made from the humble sweet potato. From basic building blocks to how to balance flavor and texture, with comic-inspired illustrations and stories throughout, Guerrilla Tacos is the final word on tacos from the streets of L.A.

Special thanks to Ten Speed Press for sharing the Fried potato taquito with our members today and for providing one copy of this book in our contest below (US only). Eat Your Books is providing an additional copy to members worldwide. 

Fried potato taquito
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I can eat, like, six of these. You can make these and leave them in the fridge and eat them the next day. Just like a party snack-my version of the Cielito Lindo fried beef taquito. Probably my oldest memory of eating taquitos in my life is from Cielito Lindo. It's an L.A. institution, on the corner of Cesar Chavez and Alameda at the entrance to Olvera Street. I love that place. They still make my favorite taquito. If somebody asked me what my favorite taco in L.A. is, I'd say that.

Avocado-tomatillo salsa

  • 1 pound tomatillos (preferably tomatillos milperos, the small purple-colored ones about the size of a quarter), husked and rinsed
  • 2 avocados, pitted and peeled
  • 4 serrano chiles, stemmed
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 bunch of cilantro (reserve a few sprigs for garnishing the tacos), ends torn off (grab the bunch about 3 inches above the end of the stem and twist like you're ringing a towel, and discard the ends)
  • Kosher salt
  • 4 to 6 limes


  • 4 pounds any starchy potato, such as Yukon golds or russets
  • 11⁄2 pounds unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 12 large (6-inch) corn tortillas, warmed (see page 29)
  • 1⁄4 cup lard
  • Sea salt
  • 2 cups rough-cut or grated aged cheddar cheese

To make the avocado-tomatillo salsa: In a food processor, combine the tomatillos, avocados, serranos, garlic, and cilantro and season with salt. Juice the limes on top. Cover the processor and hit it three or four times-pop, pop, pop-then let it blend a while. You'll start to see the seeds but keep it chunky. Taste it and season with more salt. Set aside.

Bring a big pot of salty water to a simmer. Throw in the potatoes and cook them thoroughly, about 17 minutes. Actually, you kind of want to overcook them. When they're super-soft, drain the potatoes in a colander. When the potatoes are cool, use a paring knife to peel them. Place the peeled potatoes in a big bowl and mash them roughly-you want to keep some of that texture and chunkiness. Add the butter and season with kosher salt and pepper.

Add 3 tablespoons potatoes to each of the tortillas and roll them into taquitos about 11⁄2 inches in diameter.

In a 12-inch cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat, melt the lard. Add the taquitos and cook until golden brown, 4 to 6 minutes. Place the taquitos on a wire rack to cool and immediately season with sea salt. When the taquitos are cool enough to eat, garnish them with a good portion of salsa and cheddar on top. Serve immediately.

Reprinted with permission from Guerrilla Tacos, copyright © 2017 by Wes Avila, with Richard Parks III. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.  Photographs copyright © 2017 by Dylan James Ho and Jeni Afuso Illustrations copyright © 2017 by Michael Hirshon

The publisher is offering one copy of this book to EYB Members in the US and EYB is providing one copy 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 April 23rd, 2018.

Who gets to tell the story?

Longthroat MemoirsI've written many times about virtually traveling by means of cookbooks and food. If one cannot visit a land, what better way to get a taste of it than to, well, get a taste of it. While I still believe in this concept, I've come to think that some of the cookbooks that celebrate a culture don't adequately translate the flavors or feelings of the particular area. The flaw is not lack of earnestness or good intentions, but rather of relationship to the subject matter. 

This struck home after reading an article that delved into Anthony Bourdain's "Parts Unknown" episode about Lagos, Nigeria. Written by Tunde Wey, a Lagos-born chef and writer, the piece succinctly explained the pitfalls of explaining a region and its cuisine through the eyes of someone with no experience in the culture. 

Wey posits that although Bourdain holds himself out to be a cultural relativist - offering no judgment save for what is delicious or not - he instead interjects his own bias throughout the program, whether intentional or not. After watching the Lago episode, Wey found that Bourdain's "tired and standard offer of a countercultural perspective, was cloying, and it dissolved - like sugar in garri - to reveal the expansive firmament of White Americanness he represents."

Rather than showing the viewers a faithful portrait of the city, Wey feels that the episode instead provides us with a glimpse into Bourdain's own mind. Rather than acting as a translator, Wey contends, Bourdain plays to what his fans want to see. "Mr. Bourdain's real talent, captured in these sharply edited visuals, is the faithful reproduction of any representation of otherness that permits its consumption," says Wey. "At this work, he is a master, breaking sweet people down from complex to simple sugars, all the more digestible, all the more delicious. This is the modern conqueror."

To find a better representation of Lagos, Nigeria or Africa in general, contends Wey, we should turn to  Longthroat Memoirs: Soups, Sex and Nigerian Taste Buds  by Yemisi Aribisala. The storyteller is as important as the story, and the description of any culture is likely to be more compelling when told by someone who has lived inside of it. 

Recipes from The Palestinian Table

Phaidon creates books that ushers  readers around the globe through stunning photographs, beautiful stories and recipes. We are able to experience myriad cultures and traditions through their pages bringing us all just a little bit closer. 

One such title is Reem Kassis' James Beard nominated, The Palestinian Table. Here Reem weaves together personal anecdotes, traditions and history so that we may experience her Palestine. With delicious, easy-to-follow recipes that range from simple breakfasts and speedy salads to celebratory dishes fit for a feast, she gives a rare insight into the heart and hearth of the Palestinian family kitchen. The dishes are accompanied by full page photographs as well as a sprinkling of images of the people and marketplaces of this area.

Today we have three recipes from The Palestinian Table for you to try courtesy of Phaidon. Add them to your bookshelf to try soon.

Please remember that members of Eat Your Books receive a 30% discount when ordering Phaidon titles using this link.

Za'atar filled flatbreads
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Preparation Time: 40 minutes + resting time
Cooking Time: 7-12 minutes
Makes 10

One of the oldest and most traditional Palestinian pastries, these flatbreads, as well as being delicious, have an emotional significance for my family. My mother's uncle, Yousef, was forced into political exile at twenty. The next time he saw anyone from his family was two decades later when my mother traveled to the United States. He had one request - to bring him some of his mother's akras za'atar.


For the pastry

• 4 ½ cups (1 lb 2 oz/500 g) all-purpose (plain) flour, plus extra for dusting
• 2 ¼ cups (9 oz/250 g) fine whole wheat (wholemeal) flour
• 2 teaspoons salt
• 1 teaspoon sugar
• 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for oiling
• 1 tablespoon active dry (fast-action) yeast
• 2-2 ½ cups (18-20 fl oz/500-600 ml) warm water
For the filling
• 2 cups (3 ½ oz/100 g) firmly packed fresh za'atar leaves (or substitute with fresh oregano and/or marjoram and thyme leaves)
• 8 scallions (spring onions), green and white parts finely chopped
• 1 teaspoon salt
• ½ cup (4 fl oz/120 ml) olive oil
• ¼ teaspoon black pepper


Put the flours, salt, and sugar into a bowl and mix together. Make a well in the middle; add the oil, yeast, and half the water. Mix through with your fingers, adding more water and kneading until the dough comes together. If the mixture feels sticky, leave for 5 minutes then knead again. Repeat until you have a soft ball of dough. Alternatively, combine all the ingredients, but only half the water, in the bowl of a freestanding mixer fitted with the dough hook and mix on medium speed, adding water as necessary, until it comes together in a soft but robust ball. Rub with oil, cover the bowl with a damp dish towel, and set aside to rise for 1 hour.

Meanwhile, prepare the stuffing by placing all the filling ingredients into a large bowl and tossing to combine. Set aside until ready to use.

Once the dough has risen, divide into 10 equal-sized portions. Line a large tray with oiled plastic wrap (clingfilm). Place the dough on the tray. Let rest for 5-10 minutes.

Take one portion of dough and, with your hands, flatten it into a rough circle. Take about a tenth of the filling and spread it evenly over the pastry. Starting at the top use both hands to fold the pastry into thirds, oiling each layer as you fold. You should now have a long rectangle. Take one of the short sides and fold into thirds again, this time horizontally, oiling each layer as you go. You should now have a square shape. Oil the pastry again and set aside on an oiled surface and cover with oiled plastic wrap. Repeat with remaining pastry. Set aside to rest for 15 minutes while you preheat the oven to 475°F/240°C/Gas Mark 9.

Flatten it out with well oiled hands into a 8-inch/20-cm square, then place on a baking sheet. Repeat with the rest of the pastry. Bake for 7-12 minutes, or until a light golden color. Check the underside, if it has not browned, you may need to flip it and bake for 2 minutes to brown the bottom.

Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool. Serve warm with halloumi cheese or Labaneh (page 26), a side of fresh vegetables, and a cup of sweet mint tea (page 237).

Eggplant (aubergine), yogurt, and nut salad
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Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes
Serves: 4-6


• 2 ¼ lb/1 kg (about 4 medium) eggplants (aubergines)
• olive oil, for brushing
• salt and black pepper
For the yogurt sauce
• 1 ½ cups (14 oz/400 g) Greek yogurt
• 1 small clove garlic, crushed
• ½ teaspoon salt
• ½ teaspoon lemon juice (optional)
For the garnish
• 2 tablespoons pomegranate seeds
• ½ cup (2 oz/50 g) lightly toasted mixed nuts, such as almonds, pistachios, hazelnuts
• small handful of green leaves such as arugula (rocket), dill, or chives


Preheat the broiler (grill) to high. Slice the eggplants (aubergines) into ¾-inch/1.5-cm rounds, brush both sides with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place the eggplants on an oven rack and broil (grill) for about 10 minutes on each side, or until they develop a golden brown exterior.

In the meantime, put all the ingredients for the yogurt sauce into a bowl and whisk together to a smooth consistency. The lemon juice is optional but it helps bring all the flavors together, especially if you are using a mellow yogurt, not a tangy one.

Once the eggplants are done, arrange in overlapping circles on a round platter. Spoon over the yogurt mixture then top with pomegranate seeds, toasted nuts, and green leaves.

Variation: Use zucchini (courgettes), cut in half and sliced lengthwise, instead of the eggplants and use walnuts, pomegranate seeds, and sumac for the garnish.

Jerusalem sesame bagels
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Preparation Time: 30 minutes + resting
Cooking Time:15 - 20 minutes
Makes: 6 bagels


For the Pastry

  • 4 ½ cups (1 lb 2 oz / 500 g) all-purpose (plain) white flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 ½ cups (12 fl oz / 350 ml) whole (full-fat) milk, warm
  • 1 tablespoon active dry (fast-action) yeast
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • olive oil

 For the sesame coating

  • 1 cup (5 oz / 150 g) hulled sesame seeds
  • 1 - 2 tablespoons grape molasses


Put all the dough ingredients except the olive oil into the bowl of a freestanding mixer fitted with the dough hook. Mix on medium speed until the dough comes together in a soft and pliable ball. Alternatively, mix in a large bowl and knead by hand until smooth and pliable. If the mixture appears too stiff, add a little milk and continue to knead. You are looking for a soft, elastic but robust dough. Rub with oil, cover the bowl with a damp dish towel or plastic wrap (clingfilm), and set aside to rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

Meanwhile, prepare the sesame coating. In a large shallow bowl, combine the sesame seeds and grape molasses with 1 tablespoon of water. Mix, adding more water as necessary, until you have a wet mixture that is neither too sticky and thick that it clumps up, nor too thin. You just want to be able to coat the dough in the seeds and have them stick.

Once the dough has risen, gently punch down to release the air bubbles. Divide into 6 equal-sized portions and place on a lightly floured work surface. Roll and stretch each piece into a log about 8-12 inches/20-30 cm long, then attach the ends together to form a circle. Set aside to rest for 15 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 450°F/230°C/Gas Mark 8. Take each dough ring, dip it in the sesame mixture, and gently roll and stretch the ring until you have a long oval shape, similar to a stretched out "0". Repeat with each ring, then set aside on a baking sheet to rest a final time, about 10 minutes.

Place the baking sheet or sheets into the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until a deep golden color and cooked through. Set aside on a wire rack to cool.

Serve warm with some za'atar, or white cheese and vegetables, and sweet tea. Freeze any leftovers for up to 1 month and reheat in oven before serving.

Special thanks to Phaidon and Reem Kassis for sharing these recipes with our members from The Palestinian Table. ©2017 Photograph credit Dan Perez.

A can and a plan


While cooks eschew most canned vegetables and fruits, there is one canned item that should always have space in your pantry. Canned beans (aka pulses) like chickpeas, butterbeans, and pintos are versatile items that can help you get dinner on the table in no time flat. Even esteemed chef Yotam Ottolenghi is a fan of canned beans, and has provided several recipes to make the most of them

In the preface to his recipes, Ottolenghi sings the praises of canned beans. "A can of pulses is the best pantry friend you can have," he says. "Yes, there are other serious contenders for that title, but, for me, there is no other bagged, jarred or tinned food that offers such a headstart in creating a quick meal that tastes as if it has been cooked slowly, carefully and thoughtfully from 100% raw ingredients."

While he doesn't mention it in this article, there is one recipe in which Ottolenghi says you should never, ever use canned chickpeas: hummus. In a tweet, the chef says it would be "sacreligious" to do so. That tweet had some pushback, with many people declaring they thought the practice was fine. If you're among the latter group, don't worry - your secret is safe with me. 

Photo of The speedy soup: Chickpeas and cabbage soup (Zuppa di verza e ceci) from The Guardian Cook supplement

Corsica by Nicolas Stromboni

Corsica: The Recipes by Nicolas Stromboni is a beautifully photographed book celebrating all that is Corsican. Far more than a collection of recipes, the pages here also reflect the people and the landscape of this island while exploring eighty incredible recipes designed to be prepared in anyone's home kitchen.

Relatively unexplored by visitors from outside Europe (although it attracts an estimated three million from France annually), Corsica is a Mediterranean island steeped in rich food culture. With incredible geography ranging from the mountains to the plains and the stunning coastline, Corsica has long been a well-loved idyll for those in the know. It is also home to a unique cuisine that blends the best of French and Italian food and that respects its homegrown produce: citrus fruits, grapes, chestnuts, cheese, herbs, fish, seafood, and charcuterie.

Tucked within the recipes are portraits of those who live and work there, and those instrumental in maintaining Corsica's rich food culture. You will meet cheesemaker, Jean-André Mameli, and learn his technique for making Brocciu cheese, a sheep's or goat's milk cheese. Then recipes utilizing the cheese such as Artichokes with Brocciu cheese or Chestnut polenta follow. Other portraits include those of fishermen, farmers, cooks, restauranteers and more. 

A Fiadone (a bottomless cheesecake), E Frappe (a light and delicate sweet fritter), and Polpetti in salsa rossa (veal meatballs) are other examples of dishes here along with myraid seafood and vegetable dishes. While immersing ourselves in the cuisine, we also learn about Corsica's donkeys, wine, hazelnut growers, food vocabulary and so much more. 

The Pork cutlets and Ciaccia, a dreamy potato and cheese pie, were both simple and delicious and need to be made again soon. This gorgeous book has put Corsica on my list of destinations to experience and until then I must be content to study its photos and recipes and dream.

Special thanks to Smith Street Books for sharing the following recipe with our members today as well as providing four copies of this book in our contest below open to our members in the US (2 copies) and New Zealand and Australia (2 copies).

Murtoli tart recipe by Jean Neel
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Serves 4

Equipment: an electric mixer, an ovenproof dish, a tart ring base

  • 50 g (1¾ oz) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 50 g (1¾ oz) ground hazelnuts
  • 100 g (3½ oz) butter
  • 100 g (3½ oz) smoked Sartène cheese or parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 egg
  • 2 eggplants (aubergines)
  • 2 zucchini (courgettes)
  • 3 onions
  • 8 tomatoes
  • 190 ml (6½ fl oz/¾ cup) olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
  • salt and pepper
  • 350 g (12½ oz) fresh brocciu cheese or firm ricotta
  • 10 g (¼ oz) marjoram and mint

The day before

In an electric mixer, combine the flour, ground hazelnuts, butter, cheese, egg and 2 teaspoons water. Form into a smooth ball. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

On the day

Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F).

Cut the eggplants, zucchini, onions and tomatoes into 5 mm (¼ in) slices and lay them, overlapping, in an ovenproof dish. Moisten with a drizzle of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Bake for about 25 minutes.

Reduce the oven temperature to 160°C (320°F).

Roll out the dough to a 5 mm (¼ in) thick circle and line the base of a tart tin. Prick with a fork and bake until light brown.

Return the oven temperature to 180°C (350°F). Mash the brocciu with a fork, then incorporate the olive oil and herbs. Season with salt and pepper.

Carefully arrange the roasted vegetables on the pastry, alternating the layers with brocciu. Scatter over a few pieces of brocciu to finish and bake for 20 minutes.

To drink A rosé from Clos Canarelli.

Notes: I owe this recipe to Jean Neel, when he was the chef at Domaine de Murtoli, in Sartène. My friends and I were truly addicted to his cheese and hazelnut sable pastry in particular.

Of course, this recipe is seasonal, but I admit that when in winter I have the desire to recreate the ambiance of that vineyard on my plate, I crack and use vegetables that aren't quite from the right season...but the pastry, that's always there. This dish can be served warm or cold.

Recipe excerpt courtesy of Smith Street Books from Corsica: The Recipes by Nicolas Stromboni. Photography by Sandra Mahut. 

The publisher is offering four copies of this book to EYB Members in the US, NZ and AU.   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 April 22nd, 2018.

Kindle Deals - March 18, 2018

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. I will update during the week and re-share on social media so check back.

Please note books range from .99 to 9.99 (the higher priced kindle books are typically more expensive for hard copies i.e., new titles and Thomas Keller and the like). Our links are universal and should take you to UK, CA and other Amazon sites. 

A reminder that I am continually updating our 2018 preview post, you may wish to bookmark that post in your browser for future reference and be sure you have entered all our giveaways. Our social media buttons can be found on the right lower sidebar of our home page along with links to our affiliate stores that help support the site and indexing efforts.

Most likely ending soon:


Titles still on sale from prior week:


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