In June we travelled to Iceland for our honeymoon, and were very impressed with a Reykjavik restaurant known as The Fish Market. So impressed in fact, that we shelled out for the cookbook while we were there.
The production values are high quality. Once you get past the menacing photo of head chef Hrefna Rósa Sætran wielding a knife on the cover, you find a hardback book, just under A4 size with a full colour photo of every dish. This is everything I want in a cookbook.
The recipes themselves are a bit more challenging however. I struggled to follow a lot of them. Perhaps they make more sense to a trained cook, but I could have done with many of the blanks filling in. The photography of the dishes is quite artistic and therefore, even though you have a photo, it is not always clear what you are aiming for.
I haven’t written about much from the book, but here is the breaded pork tenderloin I made.
The language can also be a bit confusing. It is written in American English, rather than proper English. I was struggling to find shrimp chips, until I realised they were prawn crackers. A few times I wondered whether the translation had become a bit muddled. Some of it appears to be in need of a proofread too. The hot chocolate cake recipe for example: it says “melt the chocolate and water in a double boiler.” There is no water in the recipe, but there is some butter that is never mentioned. The word was almost certainly supposed to be butter.
This resulted in a lot of the recipes being duds for me. I simply couldn’t re-create them, and even when I could, they did not even resemble the picture most of the time.
Then there was the search for ingredients. Leeds has twice the population of Iceland, and four times the population of Reykjavik. Why can’t I find these ingredients? We did venture in to the Thai supermarket and international supermarket, with some success, but there is still much on my list that I have not been able to locate. Not that that is the book’s fault of course.
When the recipes did work though, they were delicious. The pomelo and papaya salad with sweet cashews has quickly become a go-to salad for parties, and the white chocolate cheesecake is so easy and so delicious that we have had a continually rolling batch of them on the go for about a month now.
It might not be the most practical cookbook ever. However, it has produced a few tasty recipes and is a lovely way to remember our trip.
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This entry was posted on Monday, September 26th, 2016 at 10:29 am and is filed under Books, Food. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.