Gather Journal #4

Gather Journal #4 Cocoon Magazine

In the Cocoon issue we explore every incarnation of the word, from recipes that impart a warm, cozy, and, well, cocoon-like feeling, to those that visually mimic its wrapped and bundled form. We examine the idea of metamorphosis and renewal through the lens of food; we devote a chapter to all things delicate and silken; we pay homage to one specific comfort food; and we take a close, very close, look at butchery casings.Small and mighty. The best way to describe what lies here, at the threshold of the meal—tiny bites and cocktails that pack a powerful punch. A sausage-stuffed olive crowns a new receptacle for fried goodness; coeur à la crème is an ethereal mound; our devils on horseback reincarnate a classic, albeit with a spin; pani puri is an airy blast of spicy and sweet Indian flavors; and two cocktails, one mezcal-, the other whiskey-based, demand to be kept close at hand. he meal’s first real chapter is all about the senses. There are aromatic surprises: cut into a plush dumpling’s translucent flesh to reveal a gingery heart; untie a tamale’s bow and let the earthy scent of masa waft out. And visual ones: a harissa- painted cauliflower emerges from the oven a crimson bouquet; a winter salad acts as a venue for vegetables to show off their natural beauty. And the gnocchi? They are about touch—the feel of each cushioned nugget as it passes your lips.Presenting the meal’s attention hogs. A baked pasta bucks the traditional format in favor of something with more bravado; a dramatic chicken bastilla is a present wrapped in buttery flakes; a bubbling, redolent shakshuka is the definition of a one-pot wonder; a horseradish-encrusted roast beef claims major morning-after appeal; and a kabocha miso stew is as soothing to the eye as it is to the belly. The time has come for the meal’s final embrace. A sticky toffee pudding and drunken, fall fruit upside-down cake are dense and comforting ; a mont blanc with chestnut purée is a soaring crest of delicate sweetness; a creamy, tea-infused cocktail has a literal warming effect; while apricot-fennel rugelach and jam-filled bomboloni are the dessert embodiments of this issue’s theme—each one of them distinctly cocoon-like in their construction.

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