cover image Bruce Moffett Cooks: A New England Chef in a New South Kitchen

Bruce Moffett Cooks: A New England Chef in a New South Kitchen

Bruce Moffett, with Keia Mastrianni. Univ. of North Carolina, $35 (304p) ISBN 978-1-4696-5112-5

In this excellent debut, North Carolina chef and restaurateur Moffett showcases his creativity in dishes from his three restaurants: fine dining (Barrington’s), Italian (Stagioni), and global tapas (Good Food on Montford). Moffett offers dishes of varying complexity and flavors: more experienced cooks will appreciate the foie gras with fig jam and toaster pastry or English pea salad with cheddar ham croutons, while those with more modest skills will find rewarding comfort food fare well within their grasp with recipes for veal piccata with creamy polenta, Moffett’s Fried Chicken Plate with collard greens and warm potato salad, or lemon bars. Moffett turns on the flavor with a duck confit pizza with butternut squash and gorgonzola; spaghetti with carolina shrimp and leeks; and bacon-wrapped trout with sweet potato–apple hash. Moffett devotes single-page profiles to people he relies on, including suppliers (Sammy Koenigsberg, a farmer outside of Charlotte), and his staff (Larry Schreiber, executive chef at Good Food on Montford, who has worked with him for decades). This is a terrific debut from a talented chef who is refreshingly free of ego and pretense, and focused on creating the best dishes possible. (Mar.)