Read well, eat well – live well

It’s all con­nected, and eas­ier than it may seem, ac­cord­ing to the books fea­tured in this month’s col­umn.

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - Taste -

Egg Shop: The Cook­book

Au­thor: Nick Kor­bee Pub­lisher: Wil­liam Mor­row Price: RM154.90

BUILD­ING on the suc­cess of Egg Shop the Egg Shop: The Cook­book restau­rant, aims to share the pop­u­lar New York eatery’s ovo-cen­tric favourites with fans of the place, as well as a more global au­di­ence that sim­ply likes eggs.

The restau­rant’s chef, Nick Kor­bee, is re­spon­si­ble for this de­light­ful of­fer­ing, which has a litany of egg-cel­lent recipes in­cor­po­rat­ing the hum­ble egg, from clas­sic ones like poached eggs, scram­bled eggs, and dev­illed eggs to more elab­o­rate fare in which eggs are just a com­po­nent, like the de­lec­ta­ble-look­ing chorizo and eggs, shak­shuka, huevos rancheros, and the sin­fully he­do­nis­tic salted caramel ba­con bread pud­ding.

The recipes seem easy enough to egg-se­cute (so many egg puns to choose from!) and the meth­ods listed are de­tailed and pro­vide lots of in­for­ma­tion so you don’t lose your way.

But it is the pic­tures that re­ally tell the story – lots and lots of im­ages that will make you feel so hun­gry, you’ll want to go straight to your kitchen and fry up an egg.

If you’d like to be­come an egg-fi­cianado (sorry, couldn’t re­sist!) or sim­ply adore eggs in all their forms and per­mu­ta­tions, make space on your book­shelves for this – trust Abi­rami Du­rai me, you won’t re­gret it. –

A Sim­ple Ta­ble: Recipes And Rit­u­als For A Life In Bal­ance

Au­thors: Chi-San Wan & Natali Sta­j­cic Pub­lisher: Yel­low Kite Price: RM174.90 al­mond milk com­pany The Pressery; in the can­did, heart­felt in­tro­duc­tion, they im­me­di­ately come across as sen­si­ble and easy to re­late to.

They aim for “mind­ful en­joy­ment”, via whole­some, un­pro­cessed, and nu­tri­tious in­gre­di­ents; recipes are made from just a few in­gre­di­ents and gen­er­ally don’t in­volve slav­ing.

As they write: “We en­joy every­thing about food. It is one of the things we have full con­trol over.” That dec­la­ra­tion of con­trol is a lux­ury and only ap­proaches truth if we take full re­spon­si­bil­ity for our food choices, for know­ing where it comes from, and how it is made.

Wan and Sta­j­cic don’t sub­scribe to food fads or ex­treme di­ets, and the recipes in the book are sim­ple, easy to make, and ver­sa­tile, rang­ing from mint and gar­lic chick­pea soup for one and prawn burg­ers for a party to pantry/fridge sta­ples like the al­mond milk they are fa­mous for or an­chovy spread or macadamia nut cheese.

The fi­nal chap­ter is ded­i­cated to the every­day rit­u­als that the au­thors use as “tools for life” – start­ing the day with warm wa­ter and lemon, oil pulling (which has its roots in Ayurvedic prac­tice), and home­made face masks and face mists, among them.

A Sim­ple Ta­ble presents de­li­cious bal­ance as be­ing em­i­nently achiev­able with a bit of ef­fort. And it def­i­nitely de­serves a place on your book­shelf and in your life. – Suzanne Laza­roo

Food52 Mighty Sal­ads

Edited by: Edi­tors of Food52 Pub­lisher: Ten Speed Press Price: RM112.90 them on clas­sics.

Learn how to de­velop a loose for­mula – rather than ab­so­lute recipes – that you can adapt to any kind of sit­u­a­tion. You will not miss eat­ing a steak, as this book is about how to “sal­ad­ify” every­thing to get a meat, seafood, or pasta salad, blur­ring the line be­tween main course and salad.

Work­ing ac­cord­ing to an adapt­able for­mula also al­lows you to use up ev­ery scrap of leaf, bean, grain, ham, or nut lurk­ing in the pantry or cool box.

One of the things peo­ple are jit­tery about when mak­ing a salad is the dress­ing, and this book has a long list of orig­i­nal dress­ing recipes, from curry yoghurt to sriracha miso mayo, and smoky tahini.

The book is also pep­pered with ge­nius tips – like how to fix a less-than-bril­liant dress­ing or mak­ing let­tuce stay crisp for­ever in the fridge – and at the end of the read, your salad-mak­ing con­fi­dence will shoot up 200% or more.

Plus point: your choles­terol level will nose­dive if salad is your new din­ner, and fit­ting into that lit­tle black dress or slim-cut shirt will be less of a strug­gle. – Julie Wong

River Cot­tage Ev­ery Day

Au­thor: Hugh Fearn­ley-Whit­tingstall Pub­lisher: Blooms­bury Price: RM149.90

“WE all know that food can some­times be won­der­ful. I think it should be won­der­ful ev­ery day.”

If you buy the hard­cover, fab­ric-bound edi­tion of River Cot­tage Ev­ery Day, that’s the quotable quote from au­thor Hugh Fearn­leyWhit­tingstall em­bla­zoned on the cover. I re­ally like Fearn­ley-Whit­tingstall’s ap­proach in gen­eral, his re­fusal to com­pro­mise on sea­sonal and eth­i­cally-pro­duced food.

“Good food pre­pared from fresh in­gre­di­ents – ide­ally sea­sonal and lo­cally sourced – can and should be at the heart of ev­ery happy, healthy fam­ily kitchen,” he writes. Since we live in a time when food scares and food scams – from fake eggs and rice to po­ten­tially deadly puffer fish sold un­der a pseu­do­nym – are fright­en­ingly com­mon­place, this mes­sage has never been more rel­e­vant.

So his take is to share his own every­day meals; since he lives in Bri­tain, much of his lo­cal pro­duce is ob­vi­ously not go­ing to be ours – rhubarb, apri­cots and black­cur­rants ob­vi­ously grow in the cooler parts of the world. But the lion’s share of recipes are made with in­gre­di­ents that can be lo­cal and eas­ily at­tain­able in Malaysia, and the whole point of River Cot­tage Ev­ery Day is to be eas­ily adapt­able to what you have on hand. As well as be­ing fairly quick and easy.

Golden corn­bread; tar­ti­flette toasties with ba­con, cheese and potato; slow-roast beef brisket with pota­toes and onions – they’re all eas­ily made with lo­cal pro­duce, packed with whole­some ap­peal.

There’s a lovely, ex­ten­sive se­lec­tion of veg­etable recipes; veg­gies are too of­ten rel­e­gated to be­ing mere sides so it’s nice to see them get the at­ten­tion and thought they de­serve to be­come meals in their own right.

Pho­tos pro­vide am­ple in­spi­ra­tion. The roast pork belly with co­rian­der and fen­nel crack­ling and two ver­sions of cranachan – a whisky-laced pud­ding of toasted oats, honey, cream, and fruit – had me quite im­pa­tient to get into the kitchen. – SL

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Malaysia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.