Israeli-British chef and restaurateur Yotam Ottolenghi's new vegetable-focused cookbook, Flavour, is set to become as ubiquitous as his Simple and Jerusalem did before it. His enthusiasm for Middle Eastern produce, and expanding Britain's palate, have made him one of the country's most recognisable and respected chefs.
Ottolenghi grew up in Jerusalem, and left a nascent career in academia in the late Nineties to study French cooking at Le Cordon Bleu in London. He became a pastry chef at three London restaurants including the Michelin-starred Capital Restaurant.
It's since opening his first deli in Notting Hill in 2002 with Palestinian chef Sami Tamimi, though, that Ottolenghi's influence across Britain's restaurants and kitchens has been enormous. Three more delis in Spitalfields, Belgravia and Islington followed, as well as two restaurants: NOPI in Soho and ROVI in Fitzrovia, and Ottolenghi has continued changing the way we all cook at home through his TV specials and newspaper columns.
Which is why we're very excited to welcome him to this year's Esquire Townhouse @ Your House in partnership with Breitling: a digital festival of interviews, conversations and performances taking place over three days, from 15-17 October, which are all free to stream. In conversation with Esquire's Content Director, Will Hersey, at the Standard Hotel in London, he discusses his approach to cooking, his love of produce and how lockdown has changed how he approaches the kitchen.
Special thanks to the Standard Hotel, 10 Argyle St, London WC1H 8EG, standardhotels.com
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