From the first pale-green shoots of April asparagus to December’s robust porcini and creamy sunchokes, food at its seasonal peak offers brilliant flavors. In Fresh from the Market, Chef Laurent Tourondel presents fantastic recipes based on the seasonal, market-driven cooking philosophy that has made him one of America’s most successful chefs and restaurateurs.
This richly photographed cookbook covers cocktails, appetizers, soups, salads, main dishes, and desserts, along with complete menus for special occasions like an autumn wine harvest dinner or a festive New Year’s Eve feast. Chef Tourondel selects the freshest seasonal ingredients and maximizes their flavors with simple cooking techniques.
About Laurent Tourondel
Laurent Tourondel created the popular BLT Restaurants. (Bistro Laurent Tourondel) Chef Tourondel continues to oversee operations for restaurants around the world in destinations such as New York, Miami, Las Vegas, Scottsdale, Atlanta, Charlotte, Honolulu, and Hong Kong. Chef Tourondel was named Bon Appetit’s Restaurateur of the Year in 2007 and has worked at Relais and Chateaux’s La Maison Troisgros in France and at Cello in New York City. He is also the author of two other cookbooks, Bistro Laurent Tourondel and Go Fish, both from Wiley.
My Review of this Fresh Market Cookbook
Seasonal cooking has become the ‘in’ thing to do. From local farmers markets to high end restaurants, people are beginning to understand the importance of eating local, seasonal foods. In Fresh From The Market, Laurent Tourondel brings seasonal foods to the table in some very elegant and unique ways.
This Fresh From The Market cookbook is divided into seasons and then subdivided into the type of course. As a result, if you are looking for a spring appetizer or a fall desert, it is easy to find. In addition, there are also some sample menus in each section. If you would like to entertain, you don’t have to wonder which main course should go with which soup.
I loved the brilliant photographs that are on almost every other page. To me, a photo of the recipe really helps me imagine how the final meal should be presented.
One thing I thought was truly unique was the inclusion of seasonal cocktails. In summer you might enjoy a Watermelon Martini but in the fall you should try a Blood Orange Margarita. I also liked that the author discussed not only seasonal fruits and veggies but included seasonal meats and cheeses. I really never thought meat and cheese being ‘seasonal’ before now.
Complex Seasonal Recipes
The one big drawback of Fresh From the Market was the complexity of the recipes. The ingredients are not difficult to find and the directions are very clear. However, the meatball recipe had 18 ingredients in it! I’m sure they taste MUCH better than my 6 ingredient meatballs, however, as a mom with small kids and a hectic schedule most of these recipes would not be made on a daily basis.
I would certainly try them for a special occasion, though, and not all the recipes are complicated. There is a recipe for fresh blueberry pancakes with orange blossom maple syrup that sounds easy. In addition, the BLT, Fried Egg and Cheese Sandwich sounds amazing and I look forward to trying it!
Overall, this is a very well put together, beautiful cookbook and if you have serious amounts of time to devote to cooking than these recipes will be perfect. If you enjoy entertaining and dinner parties, you will wow your guests with these menus but if you are looking for a simple way to prepare all that zucchini from your garden this is probably not the cookbook for you.
While I don’t have that much time on a daily basis I will certainly keep this cookbook handy to amaze my guests the next time we have company!
Diane has a Bachelor’s degree in Microbiology with a Minor in Health Management and Policy. She spent many years working in cancer research, academics, and biotechnology. Concern over the growing incidence of human disease and the birth of her children led her to begin living a more natural life. She quickly realized that the information she was learning along the way could be beneficial to many others and started blogging as a way to share this knowledge with others. While passionate about health and the environment she can’t quite give up her favorite Cheetos and Diet Coke! Learn more about her HERE.