Wouldnt it be great to own the 25 hottest cookbooks of the year? Dare to dream, right? Thats because buying all of them would empty your wallet of hundreds of dollars.
But there is a way to get the latest and greatest dishes from culinary stars such as Mario Batali, Bobby Flay and Jacques Ppin, as well as the best recipes from trendy titles such as The Cook & The Butcher, Desserts From The Famous Loveless Cafe and The Art of Living According to Joe Beef.
Believe it or not, one book has it all. Its the newly released Food & Wines Best Of The Best, subtitled The Best Recipes from the 25 Best Cookbooks of the Year.
From thousands of recipes, Food & Wine editors narrowed the scope to their favorites, everything from salad and soups, to side dishes, entrees and desserts. Then they rigorously tested each one for manageabilitys sake. Bottom line? They ended up with 115 recipes, most of them easy enough for beginner cooks.
In fact, the dish they chose for Recipe of the Year Mini Buffalo Chicken Balls has just 8 ingredients (See recipe, D-4).
The authors of The Meatball Shop Cookbook describe the recipe as Buffalos finest bar food minus the bones makes it an ideal food to serve up for the big game, a surprising appetizer, or even passed as a fancy hors doeuvre.
And then there is a recipe for Broccoli Velvet Puree from Jacques Ppin, arguably one of the most famous chefs in the world. It has just seven ingredients.
Says Ppin about the dish: This is a delicious way to serve broccoli. First I cook it with some garlic and jalapeo pepper until it is tender. Then I emulsify the mixture with a little butter and olive oil in a blender to create a smooth, creamy puree. (See recipe, D-4).
We also loved Sausage Dinner from A Southerly Course by Martha Hall Foose, who states, This simple batter puffs up in the oven like a popover and envelops the sweet sausage nestled down in it like a snuggly down comforter. (See recipe, D-4).
Only one recipe failed to inspire. That would be Chicken Skin Tacos from The Art of Living According to Joe Beef. Yes, chopped and oven roasted chicken skin makes up the meat in these corn tortillas. Ug.
Several pages of recipes are devoted to each of the 25 featured cookbooks, along with an explanation of Why We Love This Book from Food & Wine editors. These insightful summaries will help readers decide if they want to invest in a tome or two. Or 25. ($32.95, American Express Publishing Corporation).
MINI BUFFALO CHICKEN BALLS 2 tablespoons vegetable oil 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter 13 cup Frank’s Red Hot sauce or any other favorite hot sauce 1 pound (raw) ground chicken, preferably thigh meat 1 large egg 12 celery stalk, minced 34 cup breadcrumbs 1 teaspoon salt
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Drizzle vegetable oil into a 9 x 13- inch baking dish and use your hand to evenly coat the entire surface. Set aside.
Combine the butter and hot sauce in a small saucepan, and cook over low heat, whisking until the butter is melted and fully incorporated. Remove from the heat and allow the mixture to cool for 10 minutes.
Combine the ground chicken, hot sauce mixture, egg, celery, bread crumbs, and salt in a large mixing bowl and mix by hand until thoroughly incorporated.
Roll mixture into round, 34-inch balls, making sure to pack the meat firmly. Place the balls in the prepared baking dish, being careful to line them up snugly and in even rows vertically and horizontally to form a grid. The meatballs should be touching one another.
Roast for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the meatballs are firm and cooked through. A meat thermometer inserted into the center of a meatball should read 165F. Allow to cool for 5 minutes in baking dish before serving. Makes 4034-inch meatballs.
The Meatball Shop Cookbook, by Daniel Holzman & Michael Chernow with Lauren Deen.
SAUSAGE DINNER 13 cup whole milk 34 cup water, divided 23 cup unbleached all-purpose flour 1 large egg Six 3-ounce sweet Italian sausages 1 yellow onion, thinly sliced 1 tablespoon vegetable oil Salt and freshly ground black pepper
In a measuring cup with a spout, combine the milk and water. Sift the flour into a small bowl and make a well in the center. Add the egg, and using a whisk, begin to incorporate it into the flour. Slowly add the milk mixture, whisking until the batter is smooth. Set aside to rest.
Heat oven to 450 degrees.
Prick the sausages several times with a sharp knife and put them in an ovenproof skillet with the onion, oil, and 12 cup water. Bake for 18 minutes, turning occasionally, until the onions are browned, the sausages have begun to brown, and the water has reduced by just a thin coating on the bottom of the skillet.
Remove the skillet from the oven and pour the batter around the sausages. Season with salt and pepper. Return to the oven and bake for 30 minutes or until the batter is puffed and deep golden brown. Serves 3.
Note from JM: For more of a family serving, slice the sausages into coins before adding the batter.
A Southerly Course by Martha Hall Foose.
BROCCOLI VELVET PUREE 112 pounds broccoli 112 cups water 34 teaspoon salt 1 garlic clove 1 teaspoon coarsely chopped jalapeo pepper 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Cut the broccoli heads from the stalks and separate the florets. Peel stalks and cut them into 2-inch long pieces.
Bring water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add broccoli, salt, garlic, and jalapeo pepper and bring back to a boil over high heat. Cover the pan and cook for 10 minutes, or until the broccoli is very tender. Transfer the broccoli and 23 cup of the cooking liquid to a blender. Add butter and oil and blend for about 1 minute, until the mixture is very smooth. Serves 4.
Essential Ppin by Jacques Ppin
Entertaining with Caspari Clear Acrylic Goblet for Water or Wine
Entertaining With Wine n Dinner 1976 174 Page Hardcover Book Ruth & Ellen Church
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