I haven’t been to Ripe the deli, but I’m enjoying Ripe the cookbook – a great collection of recipes based on the eat-in and take-out food served by Angela Redfern at her delicatessen in Auckland’s Grey Lynn.
The recipes – many of them attributed to staff, past and present – are simple but tasty, and usefully arranged by calendar month. The emphasis is on fresh fruit and vegetables with a great selection of salads for all seasons. I’ve been dipping into the summer section, making the most of a surfeit of avocados, and I’ve also been tempted to skip ahead a few months to recreate an Indian Spiced Cauliflower salad that can’t wait until winter.
The salads are joined by a great selection of punchy dressings and, as you might expect from a deli cookbook, there are reliable recipes for those fridge/pantry standbys: pesto, tapenade, chutney and jam.
The eclectic nature of cafe/deli food lends itself to the inclusion of dishes from across the globe. This collection spins a few classics and makes the most of some interesting ‘now’ ingredients like quinoa, sumac and pomegranate. The smoky chorizo salad could even tempt me to give the otherwise bland Israeli couscous a go.
In fact, I’d challenge anyone to flip through this book without wanting to cook something. Sally Greer’s camera lens lingers lovingly over sticky pork ribs, simmering strawberries and cakes dripping with syrup. Her photographs are complemented by a user-friendly design and store manager Michelle Ineson’s pen and ink drawings that dance across the page with a joie de vivre that says ‘eat me’.
Ripe Recipes by Angela Redfern. Illustrations by Michelle Ineson, photography by Sally Greer. Beatnik Publishing. $59.99