In Ottolenghi Simple, SIMPLE stands for Short on time, 10 or less Ingredients, Make ahead, Pantry and Lazy. Where simple might mean anything to anyone, I’m with Yotam in that I like to shop each day for ingredients and spend half an hour or so getting dinner ready. Well, that’s me during the week. On weekends I can get stuck into my kitchen and spend all day creating dishes. To Yotam cooking has always been about abundance, bounty, freshness and surprise. He believes if you can read you can cook and I so agree.
Chapters are divided into:
- Raw Veg
- Cooked Veg
- Rice, Grains and Pulses
- Noodles and Pasta
Recipe categories are colour coded into:
- Short on time
- 10 ingredients or less which exclude salt, pepper, olive oil, garlic and onion
- Make ahead
- Pantry which includes everyday ingredients most kitchens would have and ‘Ottolenghi’ ingredients such as sumac, za’atar, pomegranate molasses and preserved lemon
- Easier than you think
Recipes that caught my eye:
- Avocado butter on toast with tomato salsa (p14)
- Gem lettuce with fridge-raid dressing (p37)
- Courgette, pea and basil soup (p53)
- Roasted aubergine with anchovies and oregano (p64)
- Roasted aubergine with curried yoghurt (p66)
- Mustardy cauliflower cheese (p92)
- Green tahini sauce (p95)
- Chraimeh sauce (p104)
- Butterbean mash with muhammara (p107)
- Brussels sprouts with burnt butter and black garlic (p113)
- Roasted baby carrots with harissa and pomegranate (p116)
- Roasted beetroot with yoghurt and preserved lemon (p125)
- Fettuccine with spiced cherry tomato sauce (p187)
- Orzo with prawns, tomato and marinated feta (p193)
- Gnocchi alla Romana (p198)
- Slow-cooked lamb shoulder with mint and cumin (p215)
- Chicken with miso, ginger and lime (p230)
- Squid and red pepper stew (p259)
- Vanilla custard with roasted strawberries and rhubarb (p271)
- Plum, blackberry and bay friand cake (p274)
- Blueberry, almond and lemon cake (p276)
- Fig and thyme clafoutis (p278)
- Mint and pistachio chocolate fridge cake (p288)
- Brunsli chocolate cookies (p290)
- No-churn raspberry ice cream (p292)
What I made:
I started off with the fridge-raid dressing which is so similar to my green goddess dressing. I like the name and it is perfectly simple to make, keeps well, and you can change up the herbs. Then I made the mint and pistachio chocolate fridge cake. This is just like my tiffin, using a few different ingredients. I liked the idea of plumping up the raisins in rum and swapped that out for cranberries soaked in whisky. I loved the crushed pistachios on top for colour as well as texture. For international publications there are only a handful of recipes one can make and publish. The plum, blackberry and bay friand cake happened to be one of these. As there are very strict guidelines for these recipe books, I followed the recipe perfectly. The baking time of 40 minutes was not nearly enough and so I will not be sharing this exact recipe with you.
The lack of photographs was disappointing and many of the ones included were simple. Which I suppose is perfect for the title of the recipe book, but not what I expected. I loved the use of the categories for the recipes and I think the meal suggestions of what to combine is great. The rose harissa has intrigued me and as I can’t get that here I am going to have to make it. I have mixed feelings about this book which is not as inspiring as Jerusalem.
Inspiration published on Lavender and Lime November 14:
- 2016 – Baharat
- 2014 – Sea Harvest Give Away
- 2013 – Garlic Soup
- 2012 – Food And Wine Bloggers Indaba 2012
- 2011 – Red Wine Braised Short Ribs
- 2010 – Friday’s Food Quiz Number 40
6 thoughts on “Ottolenghi Simple, Yotam Ottolenghi”
I broke down and purchased Simple, even though I own four others of his. The recipes just sounded too good, and some of your favorites are ones I’ve since bookmarked. Never enough cookbooks!
I agree, never enough cookbooks!
I was thinking about buying this cook book as I have a few of Ottolenghi’s recipe books – love his Jerusalem cookbook especially after having visited Jerusalem! The lack of images is indeed a little disappointing.
It was indeed, but there are many great recipes in it 🙂
His recipes are great but I love seeing the end product because it’s inspiring and I think I would find the lack of pictures would mean that I wouldn’t cook much.
That’s the same with me xx