cover image Colombiana: A Rediscovery of Recipes and Rituals from the Soul of Columbia

Colombiana: A Rediscovery of Recipes and Rituals from the Soul of Columbia

Mariana Velásquez. Harper, $32.50 (320p) ISBN 978-0-06301-943-0

Velásquez, a cook, food stylist, and recipe developer, pays tribute to the food of her birthplace in this rich and vibrant collection. Emphasizing that Colombia “always remains my muse, my center, my compass,” Velásquez showcases the tremendous biodiversity of the country with recipes for dishes she grew up eating, while also putting her own East Coast twist (she now lives in New York City) on a number of them. Breakfast, snacks, street food, and dessert options—including arepas prepared three ways, pan de arroz (cheesy rice bread rings), and a foolproof yuca cake—highlight authentic Colombian fare, while mouthwatering mains such as Bogotánian ajiáco (potato soup with corn, chicken, and capers), sancocho (beef, pork, and vegetable stew), and lentejas ahumadas con chorizo (lentils with chorizo) are sure to sate even the most ravenous appetites. In addition to the recipes, there’s advice on setting the scene (“The magic relies on a well-chosen palette of complementary tones”), hosting tips, and putting together playlists. Mini profiles of influential Colombian women, including Brooklyn restaurant Palenque’s Viviana Lewis, and a helpful section on pantry staples round things out. For home cooks in search of a primer on Colombian food and culinary tradition, Velásquez is the ideal tutor. Agent: Anna Worrall, the Gernert Company. (June)