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Greenfeast by Nigel Slater

Posted by Nigella on the 20th May 2019
Image of Nigel Slater's Beetroot, Carrot, Sugar Snaps
Photo by Jonathan Lovekin

There is not much one can ever helpfully say about a Nigel Slater book other than “Buy it”. Frankly, his name on a book cover is all that’s needed. And yet, I’m here, with his new, gorgeously hot-pink book besides me, which I’ve already read numerous times, and I have to say how this small book, dedicated to meat-free recipes (this volume is spring, summer; autumn, winter’s coming soon) has a particular quality: the introductions are shorter, sometimes no more than a line of words, and yet there is such a relaxing expansiveness about the writing still. This small book opens up into such a large world. And, as ever, there is his trustworthy, reassuring voice, which seems to speak so intimately to each reader alone. And of course the food is wonderful: simple, sometimes playful, always inviting. His recipes have the barest titles: Peas, Parsley, Vegetable Stock; Asparagus, Miso, Mustard; Courgettes, Ricotta, Pine Kernels, and so on. It’s as if they are outlines for a shopping list, but the brief description under each answers back with his characteristic bare poetry: “A green soup for a sunny day”; “Green spears. A savoury dip.”; “The heady scent of deepest summer”. I want to eat everything in this book. And I should mention there are puddings in this book, too: a stroke of genius to have a crumble with marzipan in it: “Soft apples, mildly spiced. A crumble crust that is soft, buttery and comforting. The merest hint of festivity.” This jewel of a book is utterly entrancing. And although it’s small-format, it is gratifyingly chunky and you might want a cookbook stand for your kitchen copy.

Having said that there was nothing needed to say, I now find it difficult to stop talking about it. Get the book so you can read, re-read and luxuriate in it yourself. But for now, I leave you with this beautiful recipe.

From Greenfeast by Nigel Slater, published by Fourth Estate, 2019.
Photographs by Jonathan Lovekin.

Book cover of Greenfeast by Nigel Slater

Try this recipe from the book

Image of Nigel Slater's Beetroot, Carrot, Sugar Snaps
Photo by Jonathan Lovekin
Beetroot, Carrots, Sugar Snaps
By Nigel Slater
  • 14
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Speedy Steamed Syrup Sponge