Chefs Alexandra Raij and Eder Montero share more than one hundred recipes from Txikito—all inspired by the home cooking traditions of the Basque Country—that will change the way you cook in this much-anticipated and deeply personal debut.
Whether it’s a perfectly ripe summer tomato served with just a few slivers of onion and a drizzle of olive oil, salt cod slowly poached in oil and topped with an emulsion of its own juices, or a handful of braised leeks scattered with chopped egg, Basque cooking is about celebrating humble ingredients by cooking them to exquisite perfection.
Chefs Alexandra Raij and Eder Montero are masters of this art form, and their New York City restaurant Txikito is renowned for its revelatory preparations of simple ingredients. Dishes like Salt Cod in Pil Pil sauce have fewer than five ingredients yet will astonish you with their deeply layered textures and elegant flavors. By following Raij’s careful but encouraging instructions, you can even master Squid in Its Own Ink—a rite of passage for Basque home cooks, and another dish that will amaze you with its richness and complexity.
The Basque Book is a love letter: to the Basque Country, which inspired these recipes and continues to inspire top culinary minds from around the world; to ingredients high and low; and to the craft of cooking well. Read this book, make Basque food, learn to respect ingredients—and, quite simply, you will become a better cook.
- Food & Wine Magazine, Editor’s picks for Best of 2016
This stellar collection offers 116 original, fresh recipes that without exception stimulate the taste buds and inspire cooks to rush into the kitchen. , Raij and Montero, the chefs and owners of N.Y.C. restaurant Txikito, pay homage to the simplicity and deep flavors of Basque cooking. From basics such as brining, oil, mayo, and a wealth of stocks to pintxos, eggs, and stews, the chefs entice with each and every dish. Marinated mushrooms with vermouth and garlic, cold-poached shrimp with white asparagus, and open-faced fried quail egg and chorizo sandwiches demonstrate the variety and vibrancy of the offerings. A chapter on the bounty of kitchen gardens features mushroom confit, leeks poached in their own juices with chopped egg, and roasted red peppers with oil-cured anchovies, each dish distinctly flavorful and exceptional. Even a simple fris e salad is elevated with the additional of golden garlic and parsley. Eggs are cooked in every way imaginable and showcased in Spanish tortillas, with blood sausage in omelets, and deviled with tuna and foie gras. Campfire trout, butterflied and baked with jam n ib rico and garlic, is simply wondrous, as is the paprika-marinated pork loin roast. Sweets and beverages round out this superb cookbook, an outstanding introduction to traditional Basque cuisine.