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Thursday, May 10, 2012

Plenty - Cookbook

PLENTY
from London's Ottolenghi Restaurant
Yotam Ottolenghi and his business partner, Sami Tamimi are the authors of the cookbook, Plenty - Vibrant Vegetable Recipes from London's Ottolenghi. We purchased the bookbook last year and only now publish this recommendation. However, we knew, from a quick perusal at Rolling Greens' in Los Angeles that we would not be disappointed - and we were not.
Over time, we have prepared many of the recipes including:
Lettuce Salad - with butter + curly lettuces, raddicchio, radishes, tomatoes and capers
Eggplant with buttermilk sauce
Leek Fritters
Spicy Moroccan carrot salad
Avocado, quinoa and fava bean salad
Crunchy pappardelle
Mushroom and herb polenta
Both Mr. Ottolenghi and Mr. Tamimi were brought up in Israel and Palestine, where they were first, "...exposed to the multitude of vegetables, pulses and grains that are celebrated in the region's different cuisines." And while we are not strictly vegetarian or vegan, we appreciate the richly layered recipes where tahini (Middle Eastern cuisine) combined with mirin (Japanese cuisine) are found in a single recipe - such as the Broccolini and sweet sesame salad. Ottolenghi stresses using the freshest, in-season, local ingredients in his recipes. While this is not a secret here or in any other cookbook, it is imperative in vegetarian recipes where that, just-picked taste, makes all the difference.
In his introduction, Mr. Ottolenghi mentions that he is NOT a vegetarian, then adds, "I refer to meat and fish in the introductions to the recipes as I occasionally have them in the back of my mind. But I don't miss these two elements. In this book I offer dozens of solid dishes, all balanced and nurturing that just happen to include neither fish nor meat." Important here is the fact that meat and fish are not missed because of the various textures, herbs, spices and sauces - enough for the satisfaction of any carnivore!


Yotam Ottolenghi has not only produced this cookbook. Along with Sami Tamimi, he has restaurants located in London's, Notting Hill, Islington, Kensington and Belgravia districts. A friend of ours who lives in London referred to Ottolenghi Restaurant as, "the best take-out in the world!" After trying more of these delicious recipes, we know a trip to London is in our future. And for those who love vegetarian food, this beautifully photographed cookbook is for you!
All photographs courtesy, Chronicle Publishing
Ottolenghi blog for general information and specific information about the new, Jerusalem Cookbook
Chronicle Books
Jonathan Lovekin - Another Film Company

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