cover image Bobby Flay's Bar Americain Cookbook

Bobby Flay's Bar Americain Cookbook

Bobby Flay. Clarkson Potter, $35 (272p) ISBN 978-0-307-46138-4

In the 27 years since his graduation from the French Culinary Institute, Flay has not only assumed the title of king of deep, rich American flavors, he has also become the iron chef of synergy, drawing from an ever expanding pool of television work, restaurants, and retail items. This is the second of his books to be directly inspired by one of his properties (following 2007's Mesa Grill Cookbook). Flay writes that he has two goals behind the cuisine from this particular eatery. The first is to "re-create the classics of French brasserie cuisine with the best of American ingredients." Examples of this include a lamb sausage dressed with a California Zinfandel vinegar, and sea scallops that are blackened Louisiana-style. Several entrees are served with something that Flay often relishes: relish. Mango-avocado relish is paired with red snapper, and pork tenderloin is accompanied by green tomato%E2%80%93peach relish. Flay's second stated goal is to put his own spin on the familiar dishes that make up America's "culinary heritage." So, pork chops and applesauce are reinvented as a rack of pork with molasses-mustard glaze, sour mash and apple butter, and chicken pot pie is made with smoked chicken and a sweet potato crust. German chocolate cake seems like a misdirection until Flay explains that the dessert is named for a U.S. chocolatier with that actual surname, thus making it "every bit as American as apple pie." (Oct.)