Vegetable Simple

World-renowned chef Eric Ripert may be known for his lengthy tenure at Michelin- and New York Times-starred seafood restaurant Le Bernardin, but there's not a fish to be found in Vegetable Simple. Explaining this in his introduction to the book, Ripert says, "As I do with fish, I like to pay homage to vegetables and prepare them in a way that enhances their best qualities. I want them to shine, I want to bring out their brightness and beauty."

With the aid of stunning, elegant photos by Nigel Parry, vegetables are presented in all their colorful, delicious glory. Ripert's simple preparations range from surprisingly easy, like seasoned microwave popcorn, to more complex recipes like falafel and the humble ratatouille. In this collection, however, it's the natural flavors and textures of vegetables that matter most. Ripert emphasizes mushrooms, zucchini and tomatoes at the peak of ripeness and includes advice on shopping and caring for produce, as well as a guide to what's in season throughout the year.

Full-page photographs accompany all 110 recipes, making this an unexpectedly beautiful book that will inspire readers to savor every bite as they page through again and again. While some would be reluctant to call it a recipe, even the preparation and photo of a bright red tomato, sliced in half and served with fresh pepper and a drizzle of olive oil is a feast for the senses. --Suzanne Krohn, editor, Love in Panels

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