A few weeks ago John and I went into the city to look for art. Our walls are bare (except for our gorgeous ketubah — a Jewish marriage contract), and for some delusional reason, we thought, “Hey! Let’s go buy art in the city!” This, of course, is not a possibility unless you’ve got a substantial art budget.
Needless to say, our current priorities are good food and baby-related expenses, so… unless we’re able to find art at local markets or art fairs, NYC and its’ local art galleries are probably not for us.
Anyway, our morning wasn’t a complete bust. We were about to leave the city empty handed when John pulled over and surprised me with a pitstop at a local bookstore. Kitchen Arts & Letters is a fantastic little shop on the Upper East Side that is devoted entirely to cookbooks and, more generally, books in the food and drink genre.
In other words, I’m moving in.
I felt slightly overwhelmed (I was caught off guard by the sheer quantity of cookbooks), but jumped at the opportunity to take something new home with me. I ended up with a gorgeous vegetarian cookbook: Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi, an Israeli born chef who is now a successful restaurant owner in the UK.
What’s so wonderful about these vegetarian recipes is that they’re written by a non-vegetarian. Yotam is not, and has never been, a vegetarian. He does write a vegetarian column for a local UK paper, but throughout his book he suggests both meat-free and animal-friendly options to pair with each recipe. This has upset a number of his veggie-only readers, but for this meat-eater, it’s perfect.
This homemade polenta and eggplant was, in a word, stellar. I can’t wait to see what else the book has to offer.
And to anyone searching for innovative vegetarian recipes: I highly recommend checking out this cookbook!
Continue reading Sweet Corn Polenta with Eggplant Sauce