At the start of this nearly 1,000-page tome, you are instructed not to use this book for the following three things:
For academic research. For dieting. Or for a doorstop.
You have to to love a cookbook that announces itself with such honesty and presence. And “The Essential New York Times Cookbook” (W.W. Norton & Co., 2021), of which I received a review copy, certainly does.
It was written by former Times’ food writer and food editor, Amanda Hesser, who went on to co-found Food52.
It’s actually an updated version of the original book that came out in 2010.
Hesser took on the challenge to once again wade through the Times’ immense 150-year-old archives. This time around, she also called upon the expertise of cooks of color to add more global recipes, including ones from Nigeria, Tibet, Thailand, and China.
In the process, she ended up jettisoning 65 former recipes in the book and adding instead 120 new ones that are more culturally diverse. She includes the date each recipe appeared, too, providing a fascinating look at how our tastes and techniques have changed or stayed the same.
Miso-smothered chicken with tangy, crunchy jicama pickles.
If you’re a fan of “Top Chef’‘ like I am, then you’re sure to remember Chef Edward Lee, who is Korean, cooks with French techniques and makes his home in the South.
Those three cultural heritages come together deliciously in his new cookbook, “”Smoke & Pickles” (Artisan), of which I received a review copy.
Lee may be chef-owner of two acclaimed restaurants, 610 Magnolia and Milkwood, both in Louisville, KY. But the food he presents on these pages is the rustic, bold-flavored type he makes for friends, family and even for staff meals.
“Miso-Smothered Chicken” exemplifies that. It’s bowl-food at its best: A mound of fluffy rice with tender, braised chicken seasoned with garlic, cayenne, orange juice, chicken stock, soy sauce and miso. It’s chicken stew — Japanese-style.
What really makes the dish is the accompanying pickles. Yes, they take a little more work, and have to be made at least a day ahead of the chicken. But one crunchy bite later, you’ll be so glad you made that extra effort. Read more