I have rarely met a cookbook written by a farmer that I haven’t liked (and frequently loved— hello, Ian Knauer’s The Farm). Abra Berens’s Ruffage continues that wonderful streak. People who actually grow food seem to have an understanding of, and reverence for, produce that is hard to match. Berens channels that passion into her fantastic book, which is organized by vegetable. Her recipes and advice (selecting, storing) manage to be inspiring and practical at the same time. I love her Midwestern charm and sensibility, and her recipes (with their many variations) are spot-on delicious.
2020 James Beard Award Nominee – Best Cookbooks – Vegetable-Forward Cooking
Named a Best Cookbook for Spring 2019 by The New York Times and Bon Appetit
A how-to cook book spanning 29 types of vegetables: Author Abra Berens—chef, farmer, Midwesterner—shares a collection of techniques that result in new flavors, textures, and ways to enjoy all the vegetables you want to eat. From confit to caramelized and everything in between—braised, blistered, roasted and raw—the cooking methods covered here make this cookbook a go-to reference. You will never look at vegetables the same way again.
Organized alphabetically by vegetable from asparagus to zucchini, each chapter opens with an homage to the ingredients and variations on how to prepare them.
With 300 recipes and 140 photographs that show off not only the finished dishes, but also the vegetables and farms behind them.
If you are a fan of Plenty More, Six Seasons, Where Cooking Begins, or On Vegetables, you'll love Ruffage .
Ruffage will help you become empowered to shop for, store, and cook vegetables every day and in a variety of ways as a side or a main meal.
Take any vegetable recipe in this book and add a roasted chicken thigh, seared piece of fish, or hard-boiled egg to turn the dish into a meal not just vegetarians will enjoy.
Mouthwatering recipes include Shaved Cabbage with Chili Oil, Cilantro, and Charred Melon, Blistered Cucumbers with Cumin Yogurt and Parsley, Charred Head Lettuce with Hard-Boiled Egg, Anchovy Vinaigrette, and Garlic Bread Crumbs, Massaged Kale with Creamed Mozzarella, Tomatoes, and Wild Rice, Poached Radishes with White Wine, Chicken Stock and Butter, and much more.
About the Author
Abra Berens is a chef, writer, and cofounder of Bare Knuckle Farm. She lives in Galien, Michigan.
Lucy Engelman is an illustrator based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
EE Berger is a food and lifestyle photographer based in Detroit, Michigan.
"Abra Berens' cooking is influenced by her time as a farmer, which means that she has an instinct and techniques for what to do with tomatoes that are perfect, heavy orbs of juice, along with the ones that got picked a little hard by mistake. Hers is a smart way of cooking, a curious, thoughtful way of cooking, but most of all, a cooking of good spirit. Ruffage is a cookbook that's an idea book, a learning book, a live-with-you-in-the-kitchen book. I've dog-eared so many pages: creamed mozzarella, charred green beans and fat chunks of tomato drizzled with tuna mayo, mustard braised potatoes with chicken thighs. I mentioned the creamed mozzarella, right?" —Francis Lam, Host of The Splendid Table
"Crammed with exciting ideas that encourage creativity, this lively book will quickly become an essential item in the home cook's library."—Library Journal (starred review)
"Things in my kitchen have changed since Ruffage arrived. This organized, easygoing guide to 29 vegetables offers a few cooking methods for each one, supplemented by several variations. —Kim Severson, The New York Times (named one of the 12 Best Cookbooks of Spring 2019)
"[Ruffage] is a total classic in the making."—Christina Chaey, associate editor, Bon Appetit
"Vegetables do not need to be boring and can make delicious nibbles when dining outside. You will learn simple new cooking methods such as how to caramelise, with dishes including asparagus, courgette, cabbage and cucumber."—The Sun (UK)
"With a farmer's wisdom and chef's creativity, Abra Berens will change the way you look at everyday vegetables."—Epoch Times
"This book acts as a veritable encyclopedia of vegetables, with over 100 recipes and 200-plus variations featuring 29 different types of produce."—MindBodyGreen (named one of the 10 Best Healthy Cookbooks to Buy This Spring
"The delightfully unexpected combination of textures, flavors and colors is genius, and reinforces one quote from Berens that concisely sums up her philosophy: "There's always another way to eat a carrot."—Atlanta Journal Constitution