Yotam Ottolenghi, one of Britain’s most well-known chefs, cookbook authors, and restaurateurs, is the subject of a new song by one of London’s leading new musicians, Loyle Carner. It is the rapper’s first release since his 2017 debut album, Yesterday’s Gone.
The track, first streamed online last night and which features Jordan Rakei in the chorus, is called Ottolenghi. Blurring the line between dream and reality, it chronicles a journey Carner takes; on it, during a train ride, at the start of the second verse, he’s asked by a family ‘about the bible I was reading.’
Told them that the title was misleading labelled it Jerusalem but really its for cooking Middle-Eastern
He’s referencing Ottolenghi’s third book, Jerusalem, from 2012. In the video, Ottolenghi himself makes a cameo, sitting across from Carner at a table seat on the train. In this imagined reality, the two don’t interact, and nor does the book itself feature in the video. However, when announcing the release on Instagram yesterday, Carner posted a photo of himself reading the book, on a real train. It is thought the rapper ate lunch at Rovi, Ottolenghi’s newest restaurant in Fitzrovia, yesterday.
Watch the full video here.
Update: Ottolenghi and Carner joined each other in the kitchen to cook a few “vegetable-focused” Christmas dishes for GQ:
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A few months ago, out of the blue, I got an email from Loyle Carner. I haven’t heard of him then but I soon found out that he’s a talented, well respected hip hop musician. @loylecarner has written a song called Ottolenghi (you can imagine the shock on my face!) that he was eager to tell me about. It was inspired by an experience he had on a train when reading Jerusalem, the cookbook. A few months later, I listened to the song, which I thought was fantastic!, and even had a tiny cameo role in the video. So... now this unusual pairing is taking us to the kitchen. In @britishgq video (link in my bio) you can watch us cook together Christmas stuff, chat and eat. Pretty cool, I think.