Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Earth to Table

From the front cover of Earth to Table right through to the back...this is an awesome book, filled with glorious photos and so much more. I knew I was going to love it when I read the cover inner jacket...
"There is nothing more delicious than a tomato still warm from the sun, or a strawberry so perfectly ripe it stains your fingers"
This is a book to savour...every word, every profile story....(chef's like Thomas Keller of The French Laundry and Dan Barber of Blue Hill at Stone Barns)...every spotlight (from composting to dairy, to seafood and meat)...every "how to" (my favorite being farmers markets)...and every recipe - all organized by season.

The book, as the title would suggest is about eating locally, which means, eating seasonally and "letting nature write the menu"....Seriously, don't you love the language?!

Chef Jeff Crump, is a Canadian Slow Food pioneer and Executive Chef at the Ancaster Old Mill Inn not far from Toronto, Ontario. He's worked with the likes of Alice Waters at Chez Panisse in California before settling down in the fertile heartland of Ontario. His credentials are impressive, but mostly it's his philosophy I admire. More quotes I love.....
"If the world were fair we'd have celebrity farmers".

"Food is important. It puts in physical form many of the things we value in life. It tells us who we are, and what kind of lives we dream of living. Food is all about what's best in life".

"Chefs don't make food, and farmers don't make food - food is the result of a long and largely hidden process"

"Slow Food is not an ideological does not mean slow cooking, it just means not fast food....Slow Food is (simply) 'good food' "
Jeff teams up with Bettina Schormann who has won numerous awards and is the awesome Pastry Chef at the Ancaster Old Mill.

And the recipes....they are grouped by season from delightful treats like fiddleheads (my all time Spring harbinger), a salad of peas, feta and mint, a salsa verde that I can still make this time of year thanks to my local farmers market and some excellent local hot house farming).

On to Summer...I want them all, but especially can't wait for the cherry clafoutis and the plum tarts. The "how to" for summer is all about canning and preserving all those glorious fruits and vegetables to be enjoyed all winter long.

Next up is Fall, from cranberries to leeks, pumpkins and squash, the choices are wild mushroom and roasted corn pizza and, one of my favorite meals...braised short ribs. Naturally there are apple tarts and mile high pumpkin pie.

Even least favorite season has some lovely recipes that already have me drooling and I know will bring a smile to my face on the gloomiest of days...herbed dumplings, roasted root vegetables, apple cider muffins....

Admittedly, there are many a dish I will be preparing that cross over the seasons. This La Bomba condiment will be a staple well into the winter months and beyond.

All in all, this is one very special book on so many levels. Do yourself a favour and check it out.


Psychgrad said...

I don't know how you manage to keep so many foodblogs going. Kudos to you!

I just got this one for my birthday. It's packed in a box at the moment, waiting to be moved...but I can't wait to read through it.

Ruth Daniels said...

It really is a very special book. I know you're going to love it when it finally comes out of the box.