DEAN & DELUCA: The Food and Wine Cookbook

Jeff Morgan, Author . Chronicle $35 (223p) ISBN 0-8118-3213-9

Lushly illustrated with color photographs, this cookbook is focused on matching wine with meals—specifically, California wines with mainly California cuisine– inspired dishes. Morgan, the wine director for Dean & Deluca, begins with a look at the history and techniques of wine-growing in the sunshine state. A valley-by-valley description of the vineyard regions helps readers make sense of the subtle differences between the wines, and a primer on basic wine and food pairings explains when to offer Chardonnay and when to bring out the Syrah. The book then presents 75 recipes—appetizers, main courses and desserts, plus "After Dinner" (foods to accompany dessert wines), "Basics" (a crash course in making polenta, rice, soup stocks and the like) and a glossary. From the Marinated Olives with Thyme, Lemon and Pepper Flakes to the Roasted Chicken with Parsnips, Porcini and Lemon Sage, each recipe is accompanied by wine suggestions meant to enhance both the food and the libation. While many dishes have a California feel, several offer more international flavors, like the Chickpea Salad with Tomatoes, Crunchy Vegetables and Cilantro, with its North African influences, or the Indian Spiced Brisket, in which cardamom and cinnamon give the beef an unusual twist. Informative sidebars about working with ingredients like mushrooms and cheeses are scattered throughout the book. Morgan provides a lesson in wines, a collection of versatile recipes and a window onto a sumptuous wine-country lifestyle. (Apr.)

Reviewed on: 02/04/2002
Release date: 02/01/2002
Genre: Nonfiction
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