Friday, April 1, 2011

Itsa Cookbook – worth crossing town for

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Domini and Peaches Kemp single-handedly (yeah there’s two of them but you know what I mean) introduced the bagel to the Irish masses back in 1999. I used to regularly race across town at lunchtime, over the Ha’penny Bridge to join the queue in the Epicurean Centre to get my bagel fix from their tiny gourmet bagel store - Itsa Bagel.

Rushing across Dublin's Ha'penny Bridge in pursuit of bagels
(sketch by Chris Warren    )

This is a great book to give a new cook. Open the first chapter – The Holy Grail of Basics – for the be all and end all of how to cook great steak and roast chicken. Throughout the book, there are influences from a variety of cuisines – Asian (Beef rendang, Pork and lettuce parcels) Spanish (Chickpea, sweet potato and chorizo stew), Middle East (Quinoa and pomegranate salad), South Africa (Babotie) and good old-fashioned Irish home cooking.

Itsa worth crossing town for

There are plenty of vegetarian dishes that I’ve marked ‘MUST TRY’ – such as the St Tola goat’s cheese and thyme soufflé and the Broad bean hummus. The food is styled by Orla Neligan and beautifully photographed by Joanne Murphy.
Gill & McMillan gave me a copy but I would happily cross town to add a copy to my collection.
Itsa Cookbook by Domini Kemp
Published by Gill & Macmillan
ISBN 978-0-7171-4742-7
List price €19.99
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