We have been urged since time immemorial never to judge a book by its cover.
Not so in the case of this latest offering from Nigel Slater at Fourth Estate.
It is a quite beautiful book with a slip off section in the dust jacket to reveal the stylish binding and lettering below.
It gets better as you open up and scan the contents.
He is not about to lecture us as to the efficacy of self sufficiency.
He lives in a London town house with modest garden, which as he points out is hardly adequate for such grand plans.
Moreover, he attempts to woo us gently into the unparalleled experience of cooking vegetables fresh from the garden, or purchased from the market.
Much has been made in the last year about fresh produce, and his story has the same resonance .
He hasn’t however, tried to emulate anyone else’s ideas or for that matter, recipes.
He is, as ever an individual with an unique style of writing about the food he prepares.
He moves between the wistful prose and a high- five enthusiasm when his favourite veggies are converted into dishes.
The culinary staples of onions, potatoes and tomatoes are treated as the chieftains of the vegetable hierarchy, and the recipes can almost be tasted from his sumptuous recipes and photos.
He also gives due consideration to the more obscure, marrow and the like.
As this is book is referred to as “Volume 1” we are tempted with an excerpt towards its close with his take on Volume 2, on fruit.
Personally, I can’t wait to get my hands on it.
For more information, click on the link below.
Tender: Volume I, A cook and his vegetable patch