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SUNDAY TIMES FOOD BOOK OF THE YEAR 2019
DAILY MAIL FOOD BOOK OF THE YEAR 2019
A THE TIMES FOOD BOOK OF THE YEAR 2019
A FINANCIAL TIMES FOOD BOOK OF THE YEAR 2019
A GUARDIAN FOOD BOOK OF THE YEAR 2019
A BBC RADIO 4 FOOD PROGRAMME BOOK OF THE YEAR 2019
From cheese to vinegar, throughout the centuries we have deliberately let – and even encouraged – food to go sour to enhance its flavour. Now, sour foods have never been more fashionable, with the spotlight falling on foodstuffs as disparate as Belgian sour beer and Korean kimchi. But what is it that makes sourness such an enticing, complex element of the eating experience? And what are the best ways to harness sour flavours in your own kitchen?
Sour offers a series of invitations to the modern cook, to learn the life-enhancing skills behind the everyday transformations that hold the key to this most enduring taste. Award-winning food writer Mark Diacono sets out to demystify the sour world, and explore why everyone's extolling the virtues of kombucha and fermenting for their digestive health. By grappling with gooseberries and turning his hand to sourdough, experimenting with ultra-cool shrub cocktails, and making his own yoghurt, kefir and pickles, Mark tells the story of what makes things sour, and offers recipes that maximise the transformative power of this amazing taste. From sumac-roasted duck and kombucha mayonnaise to roasted plums with labneh and cherry sour cream clafoutis, it is time to let a little (or a lot) of sour into your life.
"A beautiful book, and one which makes me want to cultivate my garden just as much as scurry to the kitchen." — Nigella Lawson
"At its core this book is about cooking, but it's an essential and valuable resource for folk who love to grow their own herbs and cook. Sorted by individual herbs with detailed notes on how to grow and use them, it's going to be a book I will turn to a lot over the years." — Nik Sharma
Herb is a plot-to-plate exploration of herbs that majors on the kitchen, with just enough of the simple art of growing to allow the reader to welcome a wealth of home-grown flavours into their kitchen.
Author Mark Diacono is a gardener as well as a cook. Packed with ideas for enjoying and using herbs, Herb is much more than your average recipe book. Mark shares the techniques at the heart of sourcing, preparing and using herbs well, enabling you to make delicious food that is as rewarding in the process as it is in the end result. The book explores how to use herbs, when to deploy them, and how to capture those flavours to use when they might not be seasonally available. The reader will become familiar with the differences in flavour intensity, provenance, nutritional benefits and more.
Focusing on the familiars including thyme, rosemary, basil, chives and bay, Herb also opens the door to a few lesser-known flavours. The recipes build on bringing your herbs alive – whether that’s a quickly swizzed parsley pesto when short of time on a weekday evening, or in wrapping a crumbly Lancashire cheese in lovage for a few weeks to infuse it with bitter earthiness.
With a guide to sowing, planting, feeding and propagating herbs, there are also full plant descriptions and their main culinary affinities. Mark then looks at various ways to preserve herbs including making oils, drying, vinegars, syrups and freezing, before offering over 100 innovative recipes that make the most of your new herb knowledge.
Growing fruit at home is a delicious and altogether more enjoyable alternative to buying it in the shops. Mark Diacono offers a practical and accessible guide to making the most of your garden and what it has to offer.
The first part of the book is an A-Z of the different varieties of fruit, with old favourites like apples, cherries, plums,
blackcurrants, white currants, redcurrants, strawberries, blueberries, gooseberries, raspberries and rhubarb as well as more exotic species like figs, grapes, cranberries, Japanese wine berries and apricots. Each is accompanied by a photograph, with detailed advice on when and how to grow and harvest.
In the second part of the book, Mark gives straightforward guidelines on techniques like pruning and training, as well as how to deal with problems or pests. There is a section dedicated to growing under covers and in containers.
Introduced by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and with 30 delicious recipes, beautiful, full-colour photographs and a directory of useful addresses, this is the ideal reference for any aspiring fruit grower.
Chickens are a fantastic addition to a garden or outdoors space - you don't have to live in the back of beyond to have a few clucking around and giving you fresh eggs. They come in all shapes and sizes: some are layers, some are just born to strut. Mark Diacono begins at the basics, showing how you can raise chickens from eggs, and look after them once they start laying their own.
The first part of Chicken & Eggs explains how to think ahead about what kind of chickens you want and how many to get, whether you are going for a breed that lays eggs regularly, or that you might eventually use for eating, or that simply looks decorative. You can choose from Orpingtons, Derbyshire redcaps, Muffed Old English Game, Leghorns and many more.
'Otter Farm is all about flavour. It starts and ends with the question: What do I really want to eat?'
The taste of a perfectly ripe mulberry was Mark Diacono's inspiration for creating Otter Farm, a unique smallholding in Devon with every inch dedicated to extraordinary produce. Sprouting broccoli, asparagus, artichokes, borlotti beans and chard flourish in the vegetable patch; quince and Chilean guava grow in the edible forest; and pigs and chickens roam freely.
Here Mark shares his colourful, beautiful recipes, all brimming with flavour and with fresh vegetables, herbs and fruit – including a warm salad of Padron peppers, cherries and halloumi, a stew made from chicken, pork and borlotti beans, a curried squash and mussel soup, and cucumber ice cream, quince doughnuts and fennel toffee apples. He charts the seasonal challenges and excitements of rural living, and offers practical advice for cultivating the best of the familiar, unusual and forgotten varieties at home. With luminous photography that captures life in the kitchen and outdoors, this ground-breaking book reveals how even the most exotic and exciting tastes can have their roots in British soil.
From homemade kimchi to kombucha, shrub cocktails, and making your own pickles, award-winning food writer Mark Diacono tells the story of fermentation, and offers recipes that maximise the transformative power of this amazing process.
From Scratch: Ferment offers a gentle guiding hand on a natural process that would happen without you, encouraging largely invisible activity of bacteria to work to your advantage. These skills take little of your time, they are particular yet simple, and the results are extraordinary.
Packed with useful, accessible information and focussing on back-to-basics skills, the From Scratch series is designed to inspire you to slow down and create. Titles include: Sourdough, Brew, Charcuterie.
Text is extracted and updated from Sour, by Mark Diacono.
Typically, vegetable gardening is about the long view: peas sown in spring aren't harvested until summer, and tomatoes started indoors in February can't be eaten until July. But it's not true for all plants. Some things can be planted and eaten in weeks, days, even hours.
The Speedy Vegetable Garden highlights more than 50 quick crops, with complete information on how to sow, grow, and harvest each plant, and sumptuous photography that provides inspiration and a visual guide for when to harvest. In addition to instructions for growing, it also provides recipes that highlight each crop’s unique flavor, like Chickpea sprout hummus, stuffed tempura zucchini flowers, and a paella featuring calendula.
Sprouted seeds are the fastest. Microgreens can be harvested in weeks: cilantro, 14 days after planting; arugula and fennel in 10 days. And a handful of vegetable varieties grow more quickly than their slower relatives, like dwarf French beans (60 days), cherry tomatoes (65 days), and early potatoes (75 days).
The Speedy Vegetable Garden puts fresh, seed-to-table food at your fingertips, fast!