Cookbooks by Friends: Books to start the cooking season off right





Dirt Candy Cookbook

All chefs seem to have boundless energy, but I think Amanda Cohen would win any chef-energy contest hands down.  She is tiny and presides over a tiny kitchen and a tiny restaurant in which she makes food (all vegetarian, hence the name ‘dirt candy’)  with big, big flavor and more imagination than any chef has the right to have.  I love the line at the top of her website: "Anyone can cook a hamburger, but leave the vegetables to the professionals."  But I think she should amend the line now that she’s written a cookbook that gives all of us the knowledge we need to cook vegetables like a pro.  Everything Amanda does is out-of-the-box and it’s true of her book as well:  it’s fully illustrated, but there isn’t a glossy photo to be found — Amanda’s created a comic-book cookbook that’s as irreverent as her rosemary cotton candy or popcorn pudding.





Some people can’t sit still and we’re all lucky that Elizabeth Falkner is one of them.  While ‘between restaurants’ — she’ll soon be opening her new restaurant, Krescendo, in Brooklyn — she not only managed to be on Food Network, lots, she wrote a terrific cookbook, one chockful of the kind of food we all want to eat.  Fresh, bright, bold, imaginative and weekday-doable.  One flip through the book and my bet is that you’ll head to the kitchen … I did.





Subtitled "A Love Story with Recipes" this is part memoir, part cookbook and extraordinary as both.  Luisa Weiss, The Wednesday Chef, is a beautiful writer and a lovely cook.  And I don’t think that I’m giving anything away by telling you that as you cook along with Luisa, you’ll be cooking to a happy ending.











I love this book!  I love that Tanya Steel and her editors at Epicurious culled through the four-fork recipes and collected them for us.  Bound and at the ready, this is a book that you’ll cook from everyday for days to come.  (And isn’t that my scallop-and-nectarine dish on the cover?)


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