As the young Irish chef goes from strength to strength, Shekha tries out the latest cookbook from rising star Adrian Martin.
Foodies (obviously), beginners looking to take the next step, people looking for a unique and thoughtful gift to loved ones (or themselves!)
Create Beautiful Food at Home is the second cookbook from Adrian Martin, following his debut Fake Away – Fast Food Made Healthy. The chef has trained in some of Ireland’s most renowned restaurants including MacNean House, where he worked for six years, and Michelin-starred, Bon Appetite in Malahide. This latest offering from Martin is the product of his wide experience and imagination.
Aesthetics play a key role here; the book is beautifully presented and easy to navigate, with glossy full-colour photographs providing a visual guide as to how the dishes should look, as well as painting a vivid portrait of Martin’s creativity. An introduction gives a touching insight into the passion that fuels Martin’s cooking. Instructions on kitchen basics and prep work start the reader on their culinary journey, which continues in sections, from breads, to starters, palate cleansers, main courses, desserts and finally, petit fours. This gives any budding cook a brilliant template for a dinner party to wow loved ones and guests.
Provenance enthusiasts will appreciate Martin’s love and acknowledgement of Irish produce, which in the past few years has finally started getting the attention it deserves. Many recipes incorporate the very best exports from the country; there is plenty on seafood, meat and cream, for example, and plenty of opportunities for these ingredients to stand unencumbered by fussy foams and gels. The dishes are clean and delicious, the recipes easy to follow. Some of our favourites were: bacon and onion bread, chicken leg terrine, carrot and coconut soup and the wild sea trout.
Create Beautiful Food at Home is a wonderful little cookbook, with recipes to suit almost any occasion – from simple breads and soups to show-stopping dishes for a special day. Recipes are in stages and easy to follow. While some of them may be challenging for a first-time cook, those with an intermediate grasp of cooking, and certainly people who are competent in the kitchen will be rewarded with some delicious results. The book is filled with anecdotes and asides that make the reader feel personally welcomed into Martin’s kitchen, another fitting touch to show how people can be brought together through food.
Create Beautiful Food at Home can be bought at www.mercierpress.ie.