cover image Project Fire: Cutting-Edge Techniques and Sizzling Recipes

Project Fire: Cutting-Edge Techniques and Sizzling Recipes

Steven Raichlen. Workman, $22.95 (336p) ISBN 978-1-5235-0276-9

Author and TV chef Raichlen is in fine form in this collection of recipes and techniques for the grill, a follow-up to Project Smoke. An expansive first chapter provides suggestions for picking proper tools and fuels; the following dozen chapters turn up the heat on a variety of meats, breads, seafood, and vegetables. Many ingredients for starters and salads are placed directly on the flames: onions, tomatoes, and peppers are charred on coals for an ember salsa; a wedge salad features quartered heads of iceberg, grill marked on the outside but cool and crunchy within. The hearty steak dishes come with flair: a first-timer’s T-bone is made foolproof by the addition of sizzling beef fat poured over it, and dry-brined peppered filet mignon is served with a dollop of anchovy cream—heavy cream, oil-packed anchovy, and a clove of garlic to boot. (Lest anyone object, Raichlen reminds that anchovy is the key ingredient of several popular steak sauces.) Even the lowly hot dog is celebrated via crosshatch cutting that exposes more surface area to the grill; the cooked dogs are served on rolls slathered with a Creole mustard sauce. Photographer Matthew Benson, an organic farmer himself, excels in capturing the contours of such nonmeat entries as chive-grilled artichokes and Thai grilled kale. Raichlen once again enthusiastically brings spark and creativity to cooking on flames. (May)