Cookbook Review: Modern Mediterranean by Marc Fosh

Note: I received a digital advance reader copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I love Mediterranean food. While I'm not well-versed in cooking it, it's one of my favorite cuisines when I go out to eat, so I'm always eager to review a Mediterranean cookbook. That's how I ended up diving into this book blind without realizing that the author is a Michelin-star chef! It's a real beauty of a cookbook, from stunning pictures of Mallorca to close-ups of the main ingredients around which he builds his recipes. In the text, he makes a case for why Mallorca and Mediterranean food are so special, and it's brimming with imagery that makes me want to hop on a plane tomorrow and settle down in his island paradise.

As Mallorca is part of Spain, the recipes are mostly Spanish, which is not a cuisine I usually equate with the Mediterranean. Don't seek out this book if you're looking for a recipe for falafel, as you won't find it here. What you will find are thoughtful, creative, and sophisticated recipes for dishes such as Crispy Sobrasada Croquettes with Honey and Manchego, Roasted Rack of Lamb in a Feta, Olive, and Rosemary Crust, and Fresh Mussel Escabeche. The cookbook is divided into sections based on ingredients that are essential to Mallorcan cuisine, almost like a celebration of each ingredient. It differs in that way from cookbooks that are usually divided by course.

The recipes here are really chef-caliber, and Marc Fosh doesn't dumb it down for the home cook at all. I appreciate that, but at the same time, some of the recipes, particularly the desserts are quite involved. However, if you master them, you can turn out dishes that would fit right in at a Michelin-star establishment, and one day I hope to conquer them all. This is a cookbook best devoured by "foodies", or at least somewhat adventurous eaters.

While it's an excellently done cookbook and clearly a labor of love for Chef Fosh, I'm not convinced it would be a regular on my bookshelf, purely because the recipes often contain ingredients that are hard to find or prohibitively expensive in my neck of the woods and the recipes are more involved than I would like for a weeknight, but it is a great source of cooking inspiration nonetheless.

Overall Rating: 4/5 stars

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