Because we’re quite busy in the evenings and at weekends renovating the little house that used to be our holiday home, we’re glad that some of the recipes in Yotam Ottolenghi’s and Sami Tamimi’s wonderful Jerusalem book don’t take too long to prepare. Everyone who likes good food should have a copy of this book and every recipe from it that we’ve tried has turned out even better than we expected. Their dishes always seem to be more than the sum of their ingredients. Some of their ingredients are not so easy for us to find here but we’ve been helped by the arrival of our son bearing spices and other delights from London, as well as willingness to work on the house!
The Jerusalem braised quail with apricots, currants and tamarind made a delicious late lunch and reward for demolishing an old chimney today.
The quail had been halved and marinaded overnight with ground cumin and fennel seeds before being simmered in white wine, water and lemon juice with dried apricots and currants. We ate them with plain rice and toasted pine nuts and drank a bottle of La Grange des Combes, a tasty red from the cave cooperative at Roquebrun. All very restoring after a hard morning’s work!
(I’m sure I’ve raved about this book before, but I think it merits being recommended again, and again, for its recipes, its approach to food and its photography: Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi, Jerusalem, Ebury Press, 2012.)