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Hartwood: Bright, Wild Flavors from the Edge of the Yucatán Hardcover – October 20, 2015

4.7 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“With its generous storytelling, lush photography and wood-fired cuisine, Hartwood is nearly as transporting as the open-air restaurant Eric Werner and Mya Henry run in the wilds of Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula. Werner is the chef and does most of his cooking over fire, but here, he offers guidance on achieving similar effects at home for dishes like Grilled Lobster with Creamed Yuca. Tucked within the dreamy pages you’ll find practical information, such as how to clean and season your grill and a step-by-step guide to grilling whole fish.”
Tasting Table

“Not just some coffee-table restaurant cookbook. . . . Be warned: Reading this book may persuade you to drop what you’re doing and go follow your dreams.”
Fine Cooking

“An amazing story that will resonate with passionate cooks and anyone who’s dared to dream of a fresh start. This is armchair culinary travel at its finest.”
Library Journal

“The recipes don’t require complicated techniques or precision but still manage to remain savory and complex with layers of flavor, thanks to a well-stocked pantry that the authors describe in detail. . . . Vibrant flavors dominate this warm and welcoming collection, bringing the local tastes of the Yucatán region into the home kitchen.”
Publishers Weekly

 “Hartwood is the place I dream about.”
—René Redzepi, chef/owner, Noma
 
“Eric and Mya are doing something extraordinary at Hartwood. They are living in rhythm with the nature of the place, and have become deeply connected to the Mayan culture: farming, gardening, foraging, harvesting, and exploring the unique and fascinating flavors of the land. The restaurant and this beautifully composed book are a tribute to the way of life they have created, and all that they have learned.”
—Alice Waters, owner, Chez Panisse

“Every page of this book captures the magic of Hartwood and the delicious food Eric and Mya serve under the rustling canopy of the jungle and beneath the stars.”
—Chad Robertson and Elisabeth Prueitt, owners, Tartine Bakery
 
“In the pyramid’s shadow, by the Mayan shore: inspiring new recipes in an ancient land.”
—Francis Mallmann, author of Mallmann on Fire
 
“A labor of love, a dream restaurant in the jungle, a love letter to Mexico, and now a unique cookbook bring together Eric’s soulful cooking and the incredible ingredients from the Yucatán.”
—Todd Selby, photographer and illustrator

About the Author

Chef Eric Werner began his culinary career at the Culinary Institute of America and honed his pastry skills at Payard in New York City. He then joined Wylie Dufresne’s 71 Clinton Fresh Food. But it was at Peasant and later Vinegar Hill House in Brooklyn that his embrace of the primal, wood-fired cooking methods he’d explored over campfires in his youth found full expression. Together with Mya Henry he owns and operates Hartwood in Tulum, Mexico.

As general manager and co-owner, Mya Henry is the front-of-the-house presence at Hartwood, where she oversees all operations, including the happiness of the guests.
 
Christine Muhlke is Executive Editor of Bon Appétit and a sought-after cookbook collaborator. Oliver Strand writes for The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and Vogue.

 
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Artisan (October 20, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 157965620X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1579656201
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 1.3 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #19,694 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
"Hartwood: Bright, Wild Flavors from the Edge of the Yucatan" is a cookbook about a restaurant - a trendy, very much of the moment restaurant in a yuppie travel destination - that seems like it will mostly appeal to patrons of that restaurant. And it's an appealing restaurant. Werner's cooking is very much his own; it's in the rustic, wood-fired Francis Mallmann vein, heavy on the seafood and bright tropical flavors from fruits and honeys. It's tasty-looking food, and I enjoyed what I cooked from the book - in particular, I liked the combination of grilled pork and cantaloupe. The section on pickling struck me as a bit precious and trendy, but pickled veg does taste good with smoky grilled stuff.

So is it an okay cookbook? Eh. His culinary vision and flavor profile is interesting, but Werner is in show and tell mode here; this is the restaurant in cookbook form, with recipes that reproduce exactly his dishes, and you're meant to prepare as directed. If you've got a well-stocked Mexican grocery store nearby, and access to very good seafood and produce, the ingredients aren't terribly hard to find - though no guidance is provided for substitution or riffing. Inexperienced live-fire cooks, don't start with this one, because Werner's guidance on grilling amounts to "do it until you're good at it." Grilling and baking in wood-fired grills and ovens is difficult, and only minimal effort is made to translate Werner's cooking to typical American grills. I'm tempted to call this a 2.5-star cookbook with five-star photography; there isn't nearly enough guidance on technique and approach.

In short, it's a cookbook about a time and a place - and yes, that's a bit backhanded.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is an adventure! The authors' story is magnificently interwoven with tantalizing recipes, photography that places you in a world we all desire in our daily lives, and heartfelt insight into making dreams come true. It is a gift to be savored; taking in culinary knowledge and useful tips as the reader anticipates the fiesta of mouth-watering morsels that are beckoning them to reproduce. This is a guide, to be slowly ingested and enjoyed over time. This reviewer will be searching out new ingredients to add to her palate, such as dried hibiscus flowers, to attempt, Pickled Jamaica Eggs( (pg. 59). From there, the delights seem endless....
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Format: Hardcover
Bought this one last week in a book store in Miami after randomly opening the book to "Pan-Roasted Grouper Cheeks (my favorite) with Radishes and Tomatoes" (page 172) and "Roasted Grouper Collar" (page 175). Any cookbook that has recipes for two so off the beaten track ingredients is worth buying.
Read the book cover to cover and really really wanted to give it 5 stars. Book itself is very good quality, photography is great and true (my cooked recipe looked very similar to photo in book), storyline is interesting, writing is engaging and selection of recipes is really interesting and covers quite some ground. It is one of those books, once you read it, you want to write your shopping list, run to the grocery store and start cooking.
Happened to have a beautiful octopus in my freezer, so I decided to cook "Pulpo Asado with Roasted Potatoes and Coriander Dressing" (page 137) to start. The recipe is using only the octopus tentacles. Leaving you with the head, what is one supposed to do with that? This is another reason why this book really should have 5 stars. On page 143, that head is used in "Pulpo Tostadas" - yummy sounding recipe for restaurants family meal.
In prep for the octopus recipe, I made the "Roasted Garlic Oil and Roasted Garlic" and "Roasted Onion Oil and Burnt Onions". Both amount of oil and temperature/times were completely off for these two recipes. No way can you use 1 liter of olive oil with just 6 heads of garlic or 8 medium onions. The onions “won’t crowd” and the heads of garlic would just be lost in that 10-12 inch pan. It also took significantly longer for the garlic to cook thru and to get some color, and that happened only after increasing the temperature and taking off the cover.
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By 4114hlt on November 9, 2015
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Hartwood Cookbook is a culinary and visual delight!
It's also great to read about the couples adventure and process of creating such a unique and amazing restaurant in such
a challenging local.
Tulum is one of my favorite get-aways, with Hartwood being my absolute favorite dining choice! I have tried a few recipes from
the book and cannot wait to experience many more! Such delicious, creative mix of ingredients, great tips throughout the book...
from grilling tips, to agave being a great balance to a hot, spicy habanero pepper! The drink recipes are so refreshing and
innovative!
This book would make a lovely gift for anyone who desires not only to reproduce wonderful recipes, as well as being transported
via the wonderful photography and story of how this couple up rooted their lives to create one of the most incredible restaurants I
have ever experienced as a well traveled person.
Bravo! Thank you Hartwood for sharing your journey and wonderful recipes and very interesting book for all to enjoy! A definite must have!
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