Relae is a Copenhagen restaurant described as offering “daily 4 & 7-course menus of inventive dishes served without pretension in a smart, minimal space.” This book is restaurateur Christian F. Puglisi’s exploration of the restaurant’s concept, creation, and subsequent evolution as it took on a gritty space in what has now been transformed into a hip area. Relae: A Book Of Ideas is true to its title – less a cookbook and more a book of theory and practice for the culinary arts. Even when the book transitions into a discussion of specific dishes, the recipes are neatly tucked away in the book’s appendix, encouraging you to consider them as a whole before delving into the specifics of their construction.
In a format that encourages cross-referencing of concepts and styles, Relae first presents these concepts then a wide variety of beautiful dishes that execute on them. Each composition looks both delicious and exquisite – a balance of theory and practice.
The book should be of particular interest to vegetarians and raw-foodies (though there is still much to be had for the omnivore), as Puglisi has embraced an ethos of keeping things simple, natural and organic, a path that traditionally leads to more plant-based dishes with the occasional accompaniment of high-quality meat. That purity of ingredients is another central theme of Relae – right down to the water, based on lessons learned from a neighboring coffee shop. Also highly recommended for chefs and anyone interested in cooking theory (I promptly gave a copy of this to a chef friend of mine after reading, as I knew she’d be fascinated by it).
More info: Relae: A Book Of Ideas.
nb: We received this book for free from Blogging for Books for review purposes. Opinions on its general tastiness and literary value are, however, our own.