In the Kennedy Kitchen: Recipes and Recollections of a Great American Family

Neil Connolly, Author, Elizabeth Benedict, Contribution by
Neil Connolly, Author, Elizabeth Benedict, Contribution by DK Publishing (Dorling Kindersley) $35 (255p) ISBN 978-0-7566-2642-6
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As the private chef to Rose Kennedy from 1983 to 1995, Connolly prepared food for everything from cozy dinners to wedding receptions and other lavish events. He shares recipes for many of the Kennedy family favorites as well as personal anecdotes in this coffee table book, packed with candid snapshots of the American royals at their New England compound. His recipes are simple and straightforward preparations of classic fare such as Creme Brulee, Poached Salmon, Crab Cakes and Apple Pie, with an occasional twist like Coconut-Crusted Chicken with Mango Cream. Though solid, most of the dishes feel cribbed from the culinary public domain; Chocolate Chip Cookies, French Toast and Chicken Salad are all unremarkable rehashes. Moreover, the book's large size makes propping it up on the kitchen counter a dubious prospect. The books' real appeal is Connelly's warm and candid stories about working for the Kennedys. He recounts a visit by the Bolshoi Ballet in the late 1980s, Oprah Winfrey's sampling of a luscious Chocolate Eagle at Maria Shriver and Arnold Schwarzenegger's wedding luncheon, as well as clambakes and holiday gatherings. Those looking for a compilation of rudimentary recipes could do worse, but it's the Kennedy archivists who will get the most out of this book.
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