Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Book review of My Paris Kitchen by David Lebovitz

Welcome to day 23 of my #FrenchVillageBookworm advent calendar. We’ve nearly reached the end and I hope you are all organised for Christmas? Adrian and I have been as busy as elves with two days spent finishing the shopping and present wrapping, as well as enjoying time together following a hectic few months.

French Village Bookworm advent calendar review My Paris Kitchen David Lebovitz
French Village Bookworm advent calendar day 23

My review today is for My Paris Kitchen: Recipes and Stories by David Lebovitz.

In David, I have found a kindred spirit. I did so much nodding and muttering in agreement, right from the start of this book, that I probably looked a bit strange as I was reading it. For example, he too prefers seasonal, locally grown food, brought direct from the producer rather than focussing on buying food labelled as ‘organic’. He also tells readers to use a recipe as a guide rather than a rigid set of rules, encouraging cooks to have the confidence to think for themselves, adapt to the seasonal ingredients they have and adjust their seasonings etc. I’m the first to admit to using any recipe merely as a start point and I’m delighted he agreed with me, although I still learned things including a new French phrase ‘au pif’ meaning to cook ‘by the nose’.

This book contains a good selection of recipes that include traditionally French and Mediterranean influenced too. It was interesting to see dishes like the simple French bistro lunch of croque-monsieur (a type of cheese and ham toasted sandwich) and one of my comfort food favourites, brandade (made from salt cod and creamed potatoes). I’m not sure I’ve ever thought about how these are prepared, but now I know and I might just be tempted to give them a try at home. All of them looked delicious, were enhanced with great photos and often made me hungry as I was flicking through. The recipes are interspersed with some lovely snippets of David’s life in Paris. These sections are often amusing and always open and honest.

I’m sure that anyone with a love of food and France won’t be disappointed with a hardback copy of this book, which is also available in ebook format. Links to Amazon can be found below.

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