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From Yotam

Monthly Archives: April 2008

  • Autumn 08 cooking classes

    We have now finalized our plans for the next set of Saturday morning cookery classes, done in collaboration with Leiths School of Food and Wine. The classes tend to fill up quickly so sign up now! Just to remind you, the days begin with registration at 9.30 and start promptly at 10.00 with a discussion of the skills and recipes to be covered. Students work in pairs and then sit down and enjoy the food they have made with a glass of wine. Some people come with a friend, but most come alone and enjoy the friendly atmosphere. The classes finish at approximately 2.00. September 13th Gazpacho soup with Yemenite chilli paste Baked monk fish with fennel, potato, caper and fennel seeds Braised broccolini with chilli, garlic, sesame oil and lime October 18th Polenta crusted fish cakes with spicy tomato and basil sauce Aubergine with preserved lemon and chilli yoghurt Wild rice and quinoa salad with dried blueberry, walnut, lemon and herbs November 15th Courgette and feta fritters with Greek yoghurt and mint sauce Bulgar and aubergine pilaf with onion and sweet spice French bean salad with fennel, roast cherry tomato and basil oil December 6th Braised lamb meatballs with quince, pomegranate and fresh coriander Buttered basmati rice with fennel seeds, coriander seeds and dill Slaw of courgette, fennel and red cabbage with dried cranberries The cost of one class is £120. To book please call Leiths School of Food and Wine (020 8749 6400) or book via the website
  • The cookbook

    It took us, Yotam and Sami, a whole year, and many hours of testing and tasting to put together our first collection of recipes. The Cookbook, finally out on the 1st of May 2008, is published by Ebury press, cover price £25. You can order it from Amazon, Play, Waterstone’s, or the publisher’s own rBbooks online shop. The Cookbook is our first attempt at “summing up” Ottolenghi food for the home cook. The 140 recipes cover everything we do: our prominent salads and roast vegetable dishes, cold meat and fish, substantial main courses from our dinner menu in Islington, some of our wholesome breads and savoury pastries, and a good mixture of the sweets that distinctively adorn Ottolenghi’s windows. We encourage you to use this open window into our world.
  • Vietnam mini-adventure

    The pollution almost did me in. I am back from a short visit to Vietnam, where I took in some of the filthiest air on the planet with some of the most incredibly delicious food. First, 24 hours in Hong Kong. Despite jetlag, I dragged my lazy bones to the Jordan neighbourhood in Kowloon. Sat on low a stool at Aberdeen restaurant, somewhere around Temple Street, and downed truly great scallops, topped with vermicelli, bread crumbs, coriander and garlic (so much of it, I should take some Ottolenghi customers here to show them what garlicky really means). Also on the menu, and I quote precisely: Fried affluent prawn with spiced salt; Big shell in boiled water till cooked; Deep fried stomach fish; Pigs intestine and goose intestine. Next day I managed to squeeze dim-sum and jellied pig’s ears, incredibly tasty, at King’s Lodge, 67-71 Chatham Road South, Kowloon. Hanoi greeted me with a thick veil of misty smog that never lifted during my 5 days there and eventually brought me down with a violent flu. Prior to this unfortunate eventuality, Alex (my travel companion and Ottolenghi’s designer) and I managed to find the best restaurant in town on the first day. All other paled in comparison so we just kept on coming. We must have eaten at Quan An Ngon (18 Phan Boi Chau, Quan Hoan Kiem; Tel: (04) 942 8162/3) five times, turning into regular fixtures. It is not quite a restaurant but more of a cluster of stalls, serving what they do best in Hanoi, street food. The freshness of ingredients and the light touch when bringing it all together are the signature features. Fish sauce, nuoc mam, the common denominator. Everything was good, but some wonderful highlights were: Banh Xeo (Vietnamese pancake or crepe, light as a feather); Goi Bo Bop Thau (beef salad); and Mien Xao Luon (stir-fries cassava noodles with eels). Check out this Hanoi food blog: www.stickyrice.typepad.com

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