If you like bold flavors, lots of herbs, spices, chiles, and citrus, and mostly vegetable-based dishes, this collection is for you. Ixta Belfrage, who worked alongside Yotam Ottolenghi and coauthored a book with him, credits three countries for teaching her to love food: Italy, Brazil, and Mexico. In Mezcla (which means mix or blend), she celebrates the fusion of those cuisines (and more) with recipes for Everyday (Cheesy Polenta with Curried Onions), Entertaining (Chiles Rellenos with Salsa Roja Risotto) and The End (Miso Caramel Ice Cream Bomba). Exciting and dynamic food abounds!
100 recipes for everyday eating with built-in wow factor, from the Ottolenghi protégé and co-author of Ottolenghi Flavor shaking up the food world.
“This is such a beautiful and joyful book!”—NIGELLA LAWSON ONE OF THE TEN BEST COOKBOOKS OF THE YEAR: The Independent ONE OF THE BEST COOKBOOKS OF THE YEAR: Bon Appétit, Saveur, Delish, Epicurious
MEZCLA means mix, blend, or fusion in Spanish, and in her first solo cookbook, Ixta Belfrage—loved for her inventive ingredient combinations—shares her favorite mezcla of flavors. Helpfully divided into quick recipes (for when you need something great on the table, fast) and longer recipes (for when you have time to slow down and savor the process), here are one hundred bold, impactful recipes inspired by Italy, Brazil, Mexico, and beyond.
There are quick, flavorful recipes such as Giant Cheese on Toast with Honey and Urfa Butter, Piri Piri Tofu with Crispy Orzo, and Chicken with Pineapple and 'Nduja, as well as dishes to spend more time over: Chiles Rellenos with Salsa Roja Risotto, Sticky Coconut Rice Cake with Turmeric Tomatoes and Shrimp Lasagna with Habanero Oil.
Creative, colorful, and always delicious, this is food for every day and every occasion.
About the Author
Ixta Belfrage’s style of cooking draws inspiration from three countries she grew up travelling to, eating in, and obsessing over. Brazil (where her mother is from), Italy (where she lived as a child), and Mexico (where her grandfather lived). She cut her teeth at Yotam Ottolenghi’s NOPI restaurant before moving to the Ottolenghi Test Kitchen, where she worked for Yotam Ottolenghi for five years, contributing to his columns in The Guardian and The New York Times. In 2020 she co-authored the New York Times bestselling Ottolenghi Flavor and in 2021 she was named one of the most influential women in food by Code Hospitality.
“One-in-a-million creativity, Ixta's food is simply outstanding!”—Yotam Ottolenghi, chef and New York Times bestselling author of Ottolenghi Flavor
“Ixta’s cooking and writing are what have been missing from cookbooks. This one is bright, global, and bursting with new flavor combos. Ixta’s extensive travel and upbringing serve as the bedrock for this original and uncomplicated book. Mezcla is certainly going to become a staple in homes across the world.”—Hawa Hassan, chef and author of In Bibi’s Kitchen
“The word yummy isn’t thrown around by serious food people, but you can’t look through Ixta’s book and not have yummy come to mind. Each recipe is packed with bright, vibrant flavors that honor her Brazilian heritage and her deep love for Mexico and Italy. You’ll want to make every dish.”—Kerry Diamond, founder of Cherry Bombe
“Ixta’s multicultural roots translate to recipes in Mezcla that don’t shy away from fresh herbs, chiles, spices, pickles, tropical fruits, and, yes, chocolate and caramel (thankfully!)—where a mélange of flavors comes together in new and exciting ways. I’m thrilled to add her bold, vibrant, and enticing collection of recipes to my collection . . . and you will be too!”—David Lebovitz, author of Drinking French and My Paris Kitchen
“Ixta is an alchemist with flavor. Thrilling recipes full of life and imagination. I can’t wait to cook everything.”—Jessie Ware, singer and host of award-winning podcast Table Manners
“Ixta’s journey—including her well-traveled life, her family experiences, and her writing and recipe-creating universe—is artfully represented in this book with lovely and interesting stories and absolutely terrific food. Fun and mesmerizing, it’s a book filled with not only great recipes but also is a true joy to read.”—David Kinch, chef of Manresa and author of At Home in the Kitchen
“Ixta has a unique culinary voice, producing food that’s bold and intense and audacious. She pays no attention to rules, which means you decide to break them as well. Buckle up. It’s quite a ride.”—Diana Henry, James Beard Award–winning author
“Ixta is what we all long for in a cook—innovative, passionate, exciting, and accessible.”—Andi Oliver, London-based chef and TV host
“I’ve been a mega fan of Ixta for years. The way she expresses life and color and soul into every dish is dang inspirational. And now you can have this feeling all to yourself, in book form! I keep mine on my bedside table and read it before I sleep and first thing when I rise in the morning. It gives me that pep in my step, just like her beautiful, bold cooking!”—Eric Wareheim, author of Foodheim