Fermentation Journeys of the World is a cookbook which advocates fermented food not only as a sustainable source of tasty dishes but as a means to explore the world from your kitchen. The International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples is observed on the 9th August - a coincidence that did not go unnoticed by the International Panel for Climate Change on the day it released its starkest report yet. The IPCC acknowledged that indigenous knowledge of food processes could help us tackle the crisis. So what are fermented foods? Most people would probably not get past alcoholic beverages when thinking of fermentation but Sandor Katz delivers recipes in every department. Vegetables, meat and fish are all in there, but so are beans and seeds, mold cultures and milk. Dishes such as Mexican-Inspired Kimchi, Sauerkraut Chocolate Cake and Koji may sound experimental and edgy but they are in fact very easy to put together. Some recipes take as little as thirty minutes, but in other cases the food can take weeks to ferment before it is ready. I love this simplicity - allowing time and nature to do its thing, producing these wonderful and rich flavours from across the globe where they have been at the core of culinary practice for centuries, if not millennia. Fermentation Journeys is a return to the roots of cooking and a brilliant guide for adventurous foodies ready to join the fermentation revolution!
“Lemons are precious to me; a symbol of my beloved homeland, they stir up fond memories of my childhood as well as having a wealth of uses. They cleanse, refresh, preserve and are an absolute essential in the home.” So explains celebrated, amiable Gennaro Contaldo in his introduction, setting the vibrant, sunshine-infused tone that streams through this splendid book. After sharing the specific delights of the Amalfi lemon he grew up with, locally known as the Sfusato Amalfitano (“it’s like no other: a huge, elongated-in-shape, knobbly, thick-skinned citrus fruit, but oh-so wonderfully sweet and aromatic”), Contaldo takes us through dozens of inspiring recipes, all accompanied by stunning photography. With chapters covering Small Plates, Vegetables, Fish, Meat, Desserts, Drinks and Preserves, and Sauces and Dressings, it’s as comprehensive as it is refreshing and practical, with no part of the lemon left unused. For example, Contaldo adds a sliver of zest to his breakfast espresso, while lemon pith and skin can be chopped into salads to add extra zing. From a lemon-infused pizza topped with sausage, mozzarella and rocket, to traditional antipasto dishes like scamorza cheese wrapped in lemon leaves, the recipes are truly refreshing. Then there’s the delights of limoncello spritz, and chocolate and lemon truffle. Passionate, personal and practical, this joyous book will delight a huge spectrum of home cooks.
From award-winning actor and food obsessive Stanley Tucci comes an intimate and charming memoir of life in and out of the kitchen. Before Stanley Tucci became a household name with The Devil Wears Prada, The Hunger Games, and the perfect Negroni, he grew up in an Italian American family that spent every night around the table. He shared the magic of those meals with us in The Tucci Cookbook and The Tucci Table, and now he takes us beyond the recipes and into the stories behind them. Taste is a reflection on the intersection of food and life, filled with anecdotes about growing up in Westchester, New York, preparing for and filming the foodie films Big Night and Julie & Julia, falling in love over dinner, and teaming up with his wife to create conversation-starting meals for their children. Each morsel of this gastronomic journey through good times and bad, five-star meals and burnt dishes, is as heartfelt and delicious as the last. Written with Stanley's signature wry humour and nostalgia, Taste is a heartwarming read that will be irresistible for anyone who knows the power of a home-cooked meal.
Vanessa Bolosier’s Sunshine Kitchen is one of those rare kinds of cook books that can truly transform your cooking habits. It’s a life-filled, love-filled feast of recipes you’ll be proud to make and delighted to taste - recipes that are sure to become firm favourites. What’s more, it’s so beautifully-presented, you’ll want to give it pride of place on your shelves, or gift it to someone special - it’s a blast of sunshine in food (and book) form. Born in Guadeloupe, and half-Guadeloupian and half-Martiniquan, Bolosier brings a wealth of knowledge, passion and charm to the table. The book’s introduction is fabulously informative, explaining that Caribbean Creole food is a melting pot, “one of the first fusion foods, drawing influences from trading and cultural mixing since the 16th century. It reflects the diversity of the environment in which it developed - the land, the ocean, the climate - and also the diversity of the people on the islands.” These diverse people comprise the indigenous Amerindians who inhabited the region before Europeans came, Europeans, Africans and Asians. As for the recipes, the book covers drinks, starters, fish and seafood, meat and poultry, sides, soups, sauces, syrups and desserts. If you’ve never had the immense pleasure of drinking a planteur, dive straight to page 30 to find your new favourite cocktail (seriously - planteurs are paradise in a glass). Alongside recipes for classic Caribbean Creole meat and fish dishes (among them Creole fried fish, Creole cassoulet and pork ragout), there are some dazzlingly zingy, colourful salads and sides (pumpkin mash, coconut slaw), and inventive sweets (banana and rum fritters, wine pineapple). Without question, this is my new favourite cook book.