Heart of the Artichoke by David Tanis

What can I say? We love his first book, and this new one is equally satisfying. It’s filled with recipes and anecdotes that add depth and humour. Tanis’ recipes are relatively simple, and really let the food shine through. His flavours derive from the freshness of the ingredients, explaining why the book is divided into seasons.

Book: Seven Fires – Grilling the Argentine Way by Francis Mallmann with Peter Kaminsky

We received this book as a gift from out friends Matt and Cath.  It’s food porn at it’s finest, a well-written, great read, has lovely pictures and is chock full of inspiring recipes. Some are a little intimidating, such as the one detailing how to grill an entire cow – it looks like an engineering degree could be of help for that one!

Last night we cooked a 5 lb boneless rib-eye slathered in chimichurri (page 101). It was remarkable, truly remarkable, and I have been wittering on about it ever since. Recipe to follow.

Book – The Oxford Companion to Wine – Jancis Robinson

We got this book as a Christmas present and I must say, we think it’s great. I remember Ms. Robinson from the Beeb in the eighties. Her eye-glasses are now much smaller, but her passion for wine remains. This encyclopaedia is an excellent wine reference, highly recommended!

Book – A Platter of Figs – David Tanis

Blimey, just blimey. Buy this book.
I think we’ve made more than half of the dishes here, either as written, or adapted for the sake of my arteries – every dish has been excellent. The flavours Tanis produced in his cuisine are exquisite – he can make even the most mundane ingredient shine.

Book – Beyond Nose to Tail – Fergus Henderson & Justin Piers Gellatly

This is the sequel to the superb “Nose to Tail Eating” book. It provides some more excellent recipes following the same ethos as the first book, but also covers quite a few desserts and breads, written by the St. John’s pastry Chef, Justin Gellatly.

Angela has created a bread “mother” from the instructions given in this book. What a black art that is! There are so many differing methods to create a mother, but one common thread goes through them all, once it gets started, it will not die! They are also an essential part of bread-making. St. Johns are famous for their breads, and their mother (5 years old and counting) is used in practically all of their breads, and makes all the difference to both flavour and texture