Although I can talk myself into healthy eating, dabbling in macrobiotics and vegan fare, when it comes to dessert, nothing tastes as good as sugar and butter. Perhaps with the latest health initiative advising eaters to avoid all sugar – under penalty of death, Yotan Ottalenghi’s latest cookbook Sweet may be better to look through rather than put into practice.
I do like reading cookbooks, whether or not I use the recipes, and Ottolenghi’s Sweet offers a feast for the eyes with oversized pages full of chocolate tarts and meringue cheesecakes so realistic you’ll want to lick the page. Soft gingerbread tiles with rum butter glaze has only a half a cup of brown sugar; when I saw the double page picture of these little gems, I thought I could smell the rum. Norah O’Donnell, interviewing Ottolenghi on CBS This Morning promised to go home that night to bake the lemon cake. I wonder which one she made – Ottolenghi has five lemon cake recipes, all sounding delicious. I wish someone would bake one for me.
The cover has a picture of fresh figs with a meringue base, and Ottolenghi and his fellow writer/chef Helen Goh open the book with a “Sugar Manifesto,” a disclaimer about using sugar in their recipes. “There’s nothing wrong with treats, as long as we know what they are and enjoy them as such.” No hidden sugars or fats – what you see is what you get.
A little goes a long way, and you don’t have to eat the whole cake – or do you?
- Read Reviews of Other Ottolenghi cookbooks – here
- Ottolenghi’s lemon and blackcurrant stripe cake Recipe