Friday, January 27, 2012

This Acclaimed NY Chef Left Culinary Fame for the Farm

In this extraordinary new book Suvir merges his highly refined spice sensibility with the great produce of his adopted land. He also harvests favorite recipes from friends and worldwide travels such as the Farmhouse Crispy-Creamy Potatoes roasted with herbs, which he cleverly calls Herbes de Hebron as a riff on Herbes de Provence. And I was overjoyed to find the recipe for Manchurian Cauliflower, one of my favorite dishes at his New York City restaurant Devi, guaranteed to convert a professed detractor of the vegetable. Also gracing the book is a very special biscuit recipe—one that Suvir made for our breakfast along with his home-made jams. The secret to these exceptionally tender and buttery biscuits is that compared to most, they have half the cream and double the butter! Consummate host that he is, Suvir sent my father home with an ample supply of biscuits and jam, extending the visit back to the comforts of his own home.

This book is blessed with many glorious photographs, by the brilliantly talented Ben Fink, which illustrate the recipes and lifestyle that Suvir and Charlie share with sincere and engaging eloquence. For me every word rings true because it perfectly reflects my two visits to the farm. Once again I saw the huge golden white rooster who prefers to hang out with the bucks (male goats) to his own hens but sits trustingly and contentedly in Suvir’s embrace, and the alpacas whose lovely beige and brown furs become exquisitely soft yarn for knitting in the cold winter months and about whom Suvir says: ”They protect the goats and sheep, amuse us with their personalities, and enrich us with their fiber.”

Suvir is one of those rare individuals who possess a magnetic personality. All are drawn to him and want nothing more than to remain by his side to bask in the dynamic warmth, humor, generosity, and love that he radiates. But there is another side to Suvir—that of a sharply clever and playful master of the tease and please. He is full of surprises and his recipes reflect all of these enticing qualities. How wonderful to have this book by one’s side to cook from and to dream of an idyllic Masala Farm existence.

--excerpt from the Forward to the book, written by Rose Levy Beranbaum, author of The Cake Bible and 8 other cookbooks

Read an interview with Suvir Saran from Top Chef Masters.

Jackie says:
"This is an absolutely beautiful cookbook, with eclectic recipes and plenty of farm stories making a tasty side dish to the clear culinary skills.  I can't believe he got thrown off of Top Chef!"

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