Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Cookbook Club - review and new pick

Charlie and I spent last weekend in New York traipsing around the city and joining friends for a wedding celebration.  We had a glorious time and enjoyed delicious food that ran the gamut from French bistro fare at Les Halles to oversized slices of street corner pizza in the village.  In between we also had Asian fusion at Shi in Long Island City, moussaka and octopus salad at Opa Souvlaki, peach and pistachio gelato in Little Italy, and the most decadent tri-chocolate mousse you can imagine at French Roast.  We're talking about going back this fall, and when we do I'm going to eat my way through the whole city.  

Here are a few food-related pictures from the trip.


Opa Souvlaki's outdoor dining area

Greasy New York pizza -- a perfect dinner

Candlelit tri-chocolate mousse

And now for a cookbook review.  Last month's Cookbook Club pick was Martha Stewart's Cooking School: Lessons and Recipes for the Home Cook.  My book club picked this because we believed it would be accessible for everyone in the group and would offer inspiration for weeknight dinners.  That didn't work out quite as planned.  While this is certainly a worthwhile volume for a cookbook collection it did not serve me well as a go-to for inspiration.  Instead it offers a wealth of information on technique, including full-color step-by-step photographs for a number of operations.  So, while I'm glad to own this cookbook, I don't think it's the best cookbook club pick we could have made.  I give the cookbook itself four stars, but as a cookbook club pick it gets only three.  Some of the dishes I cooked from this cookbook include: profiteroles, spatchcocked chicken, and herbed rosti with wild mushrooms.  Charlie also tried out the chocolate cupcakes, buttercream frosting, and french fries.  The profiterole recipe is definitely a keeper, and I'm sure I'll try a few other things from this book in the coming months.
I'm super excited about this month's pick, 1080 Recipes by Simone and Ines Ortega.   It's a collection of Spanish recipes and includes the loveliest hand-drawn illustrations.  Dozens of ingredients are spotlighted and include information regarding seasonality, proper storage, and suggested food pairings.  This book is a monster and, I believe, has a little something for everyone.  I've already enjoyed flipping through and bookmarking a handful of recipes.  Last night I cooked a little something out of the new pick, and it was interesting and tasty with a twist I wouldn't have come up with on my own.  I love it when that happens.  :)  I have a feeling this one's going to really going to be spot-on for a cookbook club pick.  

No comments:

Post a Comment