The Book Blog and ETC.

North:The New Nordic Cuisine Iceland (CookBook Review)

Posted on September 13, 2014 at 8:45 AM

If you love the breathtaking landscapes of Iceland…and I know you do…then you will love “North:The New Nordic Cuisine of Iceland” gifted to me by Ten Speed Press. North is a culinary invitation to the culinary world of Iceland… and the recipes and the accompanied photographs are as breathtaking as the scenery that Iceland has to offer.


But North is not just your ordinary cookbook... this cookbook is a love sonnet… to… and about… Iceland…the author and chef Gunnar Karl Gíslason’s true love. However Iceland is not for the faith of heart, and neither is this cookbook. Iceland is as unique and as adventurous, as the recipes in this cookbook. Each recipe tells a story of Iceland’s history, love for family, food , tradition and sustainable cooking practices.


Recipes like…”Fried Goose Breast, Celery Root Two Ways and Parsley and Dill Oil,”… “Tea-Crusted Catfish, Braised Root Vegetables, Barley and Lovage Oil,”… “Red Beet and Rosemary Sorbet, Almond Cake, Sugared Almonds”…dishes… so unique and so ultra chic, that images of me in an inclusive 5 star restaurant danced in my head as I decided which dish would be the guest of honor in my kitchen.


The cookbook is divided into chapters, each chapter as unique as the chapter before it. I personally enjoyed the page titled “a note on the recipes” here Gunnar Karl Gíslason writes us a little note giving us permission to make substitutions, encouraging us to make the recipe our very own. He also explains about the substitution he made in some the recipes for items that are impossible to source outside of Iceland or other Nordic Countries.


The photographs in this cookbook, by photograph Evan Sung, makes this cookbook too beautiful to just leave on a kitchen shelf. Of course a cookbook review is not a review without a least kitchen testing one of the recipes and that recipe is… “ Baked Plaice, Shrimp, Roasted Cauliflower Puree and Salted Almonds” The recipe indicated that flounder fillet could be used as a substitution and we used flounder fillet for this recipe… and let me just say one thing….Delicious!


This cookbook is a chic and as beautiful as the recipes, I highly recommend it to anyone who is looking to upgrade their culinary palate with a little style and sophistication.  I felt so ultra chic… as if I was invited to an exclusive restaurant… and I insisted that we dress for the occasion. Any cookbook that brings 5 star eclectic dining to your kitchen deserves to be front and centered on your coffee table.

With that said…it is only fair that I point out a few things….(1) I absolutely love to cook, I have a deep passion for it, and with passion comes patience. (2) This is not your 30 minute meal cookbook (3) Treat this cookbook how you would treat a 5 star restaurant with a 5 star price tag, for special occasion only. (4) Use the photographs as a guide for your serving size, the recipe I tried stated it could serve 4, I doubled the recipe to serve 2.


However, Again...I absolutely love this cookbook.   I would not necessarily recommend it for a new cook… but I do highly recommend it for a cook/chef that knows his or her way around the kitchen and wants to add something new to his or her repertoire. The culinary dishes are masterpieces…small beautiful work of art which will definitely impress your guest.


~xoxo Sincerely Yours, Nerisa :)

Categories: Book Reviews (All Genre), The Foodie ~Cook Books & CockTail Books (Reviews)