The Publication of “D.O.M: Rediscovering Brazilian ingredients,” is one of this year’s most talked-about cookbooks,
Chef Alex Atala is doing the same thing in South America as most of the other high profile chefs of a certain ilk and trend are doing in the current times "exploring hyper-local cooking, using wild ingredients found by foragers and pushing the limits of exoticism beyond the point even the most ambitious of us could dream of doing."
He is using fish and shellfish you’ve never heard of, like filhote and Brazilian sea snails. Vividly colored tropical fruits. Of course, the whole panoply of South American tubers -- true yams, baroa potatoes and mangaritos.
Being a modern chef, Atala prepares these foodstuffs using techniques you’ll never find in the "Joy of Cooking."
He roasts fresh herbs until they’re blackened and charred. He fries fish scales to add crunch. He even grinds those ants with seaweed and black salt to make a garnishing powder.
The effect is at the same time beautiful and oddly disconcerting. But they are also so gorgeous you can only marvel mouth wise open.
“D.O.M.” is a book that takes you outside of any relatable frame of reference and forces you to accept the dishes on their own terms. In that way, it is transporting.
You will browse through pages of otherworldly Brazilian landscapes and portraits and then we’re confronted with something like an oyster topped with a shiny lozenge of sorbet made from cupuacu (an ancestor of the cocoa bean).
You can’t imagine how it might taste or how it might have been prepared. We are truly in another country.
But it is a good insight into a Brazilian chef at the very cutting edge of his game, for some wacky ideas its worth the price to purchase this publication.
I bought this book after watching Alex Atala on BBC's Saturday Kitchen. His warm character and passion for what he does is inspiring. This is a book you can sit down with and really enjoy for so much more than just the recipes - it is beautifully made and the photography of Brazil and the recipes themselves are absolutely stunning. And on further investigation I've found out that Alex is an ex punk dj and believes strongly in preserving our natural environment... This isn't just a recipe book, it's a look at positive ways of living, eating and behaving.
This is a long waited Cook book from the most acclaimed restaurant in Brazil. This is a great book, the photos are stunning and the book itself is well presented. There is a lot to look at and there is a lot of new ingredients to learn. If you are a professional chef and looking for new ingredients and ideas this is THE BOOK, if you are just a home cook its no use for you. The reason why I have given 4 star is because, the ingredients listed in the recipes does not show the complete spec of the plate that is presented in the photograph.Like the garnish is not explained properly, or what is the different color items that is additional on the plate and not in the ingredients list. The glossary is not very detailed, it would have been much better if there was a detailed glossary. You will need to keep your Google chrome open to check almost all of the ingredients. The methods are too simple, and really gives you the doubt, WHAT ? IS THAT IT !?!!?!! This will make a great gift to a wanna be professional chef.
This is an absolutely fascinating read, but you probably won't be able to cook very much in it. The photography in the book is beautiful, for both the food and the scenery. Atala writes with great enthusiasm and you can tell that he loves what he's doing. Most of the recipes would be very difficult to cook, with some rather obscure ingredients that even someone in Brazil might struggle with. A particular ant dish, being one. A thermix features in many of the recipes, which are very expensive and would most likely be found in michellin star kitchens. Still, if you're looking for an interesting read and perhaps some new twists that you can make to your own cooking, then definitely give this a go.