This season, a slew of cookbooks from prominent chefs across the country hit the shelves. While chef-authored cookbooks are nothing new, we’re highlighting three of the chefs who’ve done it right—seamlessly blending their voice and style in with the recipes to create a finished product that reflects the spirit of their work.
Vietnamese Home Cooking by Charles Phan: Phan, the chef of San Francisco’s The Slanted Door in the Ferry Building, traces his personal history with his native cuisine—from his early days a refugee to the high-end kitchen he commands now. The recipes help demystify Vietnamese ingredients and techniques, with an eye toward the home cook.
Tacos, Tortas, and Tamales: Flavors from the griddles, pots, and street-side kitchens of Mexico by Roberto Santibanez with JJ Goode: The title pretty much says it all for Santibanez’s—the chef/owner of the Fonda restaurants in New York—new cookbook, which revels in the vibrant taqueria cuisine of Mexico. The cooking is simple, the flavors anything but.
Dirt Candy: A Cookbook by Amanda Cohen, Ryan Dunlavey and Grady Hendrix: Cohen, whose eponymous restaurant was just awarded a glowing two-star review from the New York Times, no small feat considering that it’s tiny (18 seats) and serves entirely vegetarian fare. Her cookbook is similarly daring: it’s illustrated as a an eye-popping graphic novel, a unique format that matches the unique fare inside.