COOKING FROM THE HEART: 100 Great American Chefs Share Recipes They Cherish
Michael J. Rosen, . . Broadway, $29.95 (320pp) ISBN 978-0-7679-1371-3
To support the Share Our Strength anti-hunger agency, 100 of the most notable American-based chefs have contributed recollections and recipes to this fundraising volume. A whiff or taste of food evokes love, hate, comfort or amusement as food heritage and memories are intertwined. Whether of Italian, Jewish, Chinese or any of the other cultures that form the American melting pot, a mother's or grandmother's cooking has always been a display of love. Drawing on the reminiscences of many American food notables, such as Emeril Lagasse, Alice Waters, Daniel Boulud and Thomas Keller, the book offers a format for each chef to provide a dish and its corresponding memory: Gordon Hamersley brings to the table Slow Roasted Duck, in honor of his own wedding; Martin Yan's Home-style Clay Pot reminds him of China before the Cultural Revolution; and Nancy Silverton bakes Coconut Cupcakes for her third-grade son's birthday. Ranging in complexity from Lisa Schroeder's simple Moroccan Poached Halibut to Joyce Goldstein's more complex Chocolate-dipped Custard-filled Éclairs, many of the dishes are made up of several parts. While sometimes challenging for the inexperienced cook, these components provide additional recipes that are excellent in themselves, for example the aromatic Curried Tomatoes that goes with Susan Feniger's Bombay Chicken. The book's quality recipes will fill the stomach and inspire the inner chef, while providing a delightful read.
Reviewed on: 06/23/2003