cover image The Austin Cookbook: Recipes and Stories from Deep in the Heart of Texas

The Austin Cookbook: Recipes and Stories from Deep in the Heart of Texas

Paula Forbes. Abrams, $29.99 (240p) ISBN 978-1-4197-2893-8

Food writer Forbes delivers an innovative if occasionally intimidating collection of recipes from some of the most popular restaurants in Austin, Tex. While Forbes admits that some of the recipes are not “easy enough for beginners” and are not suitable for weeknight cooking, her zeal for Austin’s unique cuisine will motivate readers to recreate some of the featured dishes. The book opens with an intense chapter covering techniques and recipes for Austin’s famed barbecue, which might be daunting for the uninitiated. More inviting, however, are the following chapters that focus on Tex-Mex staples and reinvented classics, such as mole rojo with chicken from El Naranjo, blackened drum fish with shrimp cream sauce from Quality Foods, chorizo potato pizza from Bufalina pizzeria, and Odd Duck’s sweet potato nachos. Other chapters cover fun breakfast foods and classic baked goods, such as potato and sausage breakfast tacos, gingerbread pancakes, pecan pie, and salted brown butter and dark chocolate pecan cookies. The concluding chapter consists of salsas, sauces, and chilis that are intended as garnishes for specified recipes in earlier chapters. Along with the recipes, readers will appreciate Forbes’s humorous essays on cooking techniques and the city’s food culture. This is the go-to guide to Austin eating. Agent: Angela Miller, the Miller Agency. (Mar.)