Upon receiving the much talked about book, Jerusalem by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi, I couldn't wait to open it and get my hands dirty on its beautifully printed cover.
Sami and Yotam were both brought up in Jerusalem, Yami on the east Muslim side and Yotam on the Jewish west. Both so close, yet with such culinary differences, which after twenty years they have decided it's time to fuse those flavours together and reveal the secrets that, have been passed down through the generations.
The moment you turn the Page you’re salivating over the beautifully rich photographs by Jonathan lovekin and Adam Hinton, who did an amazing job dictating this book, it's easy to be engrossed with the photos alone, never mind the recipes. This book is food porn on a massive scale, you've been warned!
Looking through the recipes there are still some familiar faces, like aubergines and a lot of vegetarian recipes, which they do so well, but the new book really shows off their carnivorous side with an amazing 'stuffed' section, showing you that you really can stuff just about anything and make it delicious. A total of 120 recipes categorised by vegetables, fruit, pulses, soups, meat, fish and of course, desserts. Head to the back of the book first and whip yourself up some condiments, which you can stick in the fridge and keep. It will significantly make your life easier and completely enhance the experience when cooking from this book.
I'll admit, some of the ingredients may be hard to get hold of depending on where you live but help is at hand with their on-line store to find some of those rare ingredients. You can cross them off your shopping list on the new Ottolenghi iPhone app launching autumn this year. With 50 recipes to choose from, shopping list facility and touch-free mode so your phone doesn’t get dirty while cooking, all for only £4.99, what more could you ask for? It would be nice to see the app made available for Android users in the future.
This is definitely one of the best cookbooks of 2012, for not only its recipes, but also the history and culture from two different backgrounds. It's a great eye opener on Jerusalem and makes me want to visit. I spent the whole weekend cooking from this book, so from experience I can guarantee you won't be disappointed. For a sneak preview, watch the video below.
You can buy the signed copy here, priced £27