Another amateur gourmet
Life is funny. I read a review of this book and went to the library catalog to place a hold on it and found another book titled The Amateur Gourmet and placed a hold on that, too. That turned out to be one of the best cookbooks I have read in a while. I adapted the raisin tart recipe into a pie and that may, indeed, be my new signature food. And only 6 ingredients!
Now back to this Amateur Gourmet, by Adam Roberts. The subtitle of this book is how to shop, chop, and table-hop like a pro (almost). Based on the popular blog of the same name, Roberts talks food in ten essays. As someone who has ruined her share of expensive ingredients, I immediately felt comfortable with Roberts. He assures the reader that all cooks make mistakes. Learning from your cooking mishaps is how you get better. Or at least make food that is edible, I guess.
His essays start with his own upbringing, dining at restaurants for the majority of family meals, consuming processed food products for the rest. Then he goes away to college. He learns to master the farmers' market, tries new foods, celebrates the foods of various cultures and coaches friends and family through special home cooked meals. There is even a section on visiting a knife master!
After reading the Amateur Gourmet, I still don't know how to shop, chop or table-hop like a pro, but I did find a kindred spirit. If you enjoy the taste of a fresh, ripe tomato and how a little olive oil, fresh thyme and an onion can transform simple pasta into something extraordinary, you too, will find a new friend.