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Tender - A Cook & His Vegetable Patch by Nigel Slater


Rover
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Tender is my most recent cookbook acquisition and I'm really enjoying both cooking and reading from it. Tender - Volume 1 addresses vegetables both from the gardening and cooking standpoint - I believe Volume 2 will be about fruits.

I made the "Stew of Oxtails & Onions for a Cold Night" and got a round of applause from my guests. This version contains no stock, tomatoes or garlic; it relies on some white wine, bay leaves and both smooth and grainy Dijon mustards to finish with some heavy cream. A real departure from my standard and it was really delicious. I'm finding the chapter on onions particularly enjoyable.

I've been a fan of Nigel Slater's writing for quite a while and this book appeals to both the gardener and cook in me.

Rover

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How in-depth is the gardening coverage in the book? Is it a single chapter, of does it address each vegetable in turn (you mention "the onion chapter" for example)?

Each chapter tackles a vegetable topic which includes a gardening overview (growth habits, when to start, preference for soil/light conditions, harvesting, storage and varieties.) For example, in the onion chapter the gardening coverage is about 3 pages and about 14 pages devoted to recipes, usage, kitchen tips.

I think the book doesn't attempt to teach gardening but emphasizes the partnership between the vegetable garden and the kitchen... and, naturally - seasonality.

The potato chapter is terrific.

I originally placed a hold on the book from the library so I could get a preview and a sense of whether I'd get much use out of it. I think I dipped into it for about 30 minutes before ordering my own copy. There are probably about 15 or so post-its festooning the pages which include recipes I'm planning on trying and a few new plantings which provoked my interest.

Rover

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I just received the book today so I'll be reading it in bed tonight; you can imagine how excited I am. Besides his recipes, Nigel's writing flows so naturally yet verges on poetic. Truly beautiful.

Just to let anyone interested know, I'd highly recommend visiting Book Depository (the website) every once in awhile as I purchased this book for only $16.75 (Australian)!

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  • 2 months later...
I think the book doesn't attempt to teach gardening but emphasizes the partnership between the vegetable garden and the kitchen... and, naturally - seasonality.

Would it be worth getting this book if one didn't garden? I don't have the space for one, but almost all of the fruits and vegetables I eat are seasonal.

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I think the book doesn't attempt to teach gardening but emphasizes the partnership between the vegetable garden and the kitchen... and, naturally - seasonality.

Would it be worth getting this book if one didn't garden? I don't have the space for one, but almost all of the fruits and vegetables I eat are seasonal.

Yes, Nakji, it would be worthwhile, but if you'd like a preview - why not get it from the library before you purchase it? I've enjoyed the book equally as a cookbook and a gardening read. I've also enjoyed it simply as a good book, especially now that I can bask in the sunshine on the deck with a stack of books beside me ... this one is near the top of the stack.

Rover

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