The all-in-one cooking bible for a new generation with 300 recipes for everything from simple vinaigrettes and roast chicken to birthday cake and cocktails.
For Alex Guarnaschelli—whose mother edited the seminal 1997 edition of The Joy of Cooking, which defined the food of the late twentieth century—a life in food and cookbooks was almost predestined. Now an accomplished chef and author in her own right (and mom to a young daughter), Alex pens a cookbook for the way we eat today. For generations raised on vibrant, international flavors and supermarkets stocked with miso paste, harissa, and other bold condiments and ingredients, here are 300 recipes to replace their parents’ Chicken Marbella, including Glazed Five-Spice Ribs, Roasted Eggplant Dip with Garlic Butter Naan, Roasted Beef Brisket with Pastrami Rub, Fennel and Orange Salad with Walnut Pesto, Quinoa Allspice Oatmeal Cookies, and Dark Chocolate Rum Pie.
ALEX GUARNASCHELLI trained at La Varenne Culinary School in Burgundy, France, before moving to Paris and working at Guy Savoy for four years before eventually returning to New York to cook at Daniel. Since 2003, she has been the executive chef of Butter Restaurant. Alex appears on numerous Food Network shows, including as a judge on Chopped and Beat Bobby Flay and an Iron Chef on Iron Chef America. She lives in New York City with her daughter.
Orange Walnut Bundt Cake
Serves 12 to 14
I love assembling this cake: filling the pan with some of the batter, spooning in a hidden ring of marmalade, and covering it gingerly with the remaining batter. This cake can be served as is or with a simple glaze for a brunch. Or it can be topped with a buttercream or dark chocolate ganache and become dessert for a dinner party.
Nonstick cooking spray
1 cup orange marmalade
1½ cups walnut halves, toasted and chopped
3⁄4 pound plus 2 tablespoons (3¼ sticks) unsalted butter, sliced, at room temperature
2½ cups sugar
¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons whole milk
4 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups cake flour
1½ teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons grated lemon zest
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a bundt pan with cooking spray.
2. Prepare the filling: In a medium bowl, stir together the marmalade with 1¼ cups of the nuts.
3. Start the batter: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar until fluffy, 8 to 10 minutes. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs, egg yolks, and vanilla. In another bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
4. Finish the batter: Add the lemon zest to the butter and mix to combine. Add half of the milk mixture and blend on low speed. Add half of the flour mixture and blend only until combined. Mix in the remaining milk and then the remaining flour. Do not overmix.
5. Bake the cake: Spoon about half of the batter into the prepared pan. Spoon about three-quarters of the marmalade mixture in a ring in the middle of the batter. Gently spoon the remaining batter over the top of the marmalade so it’s hidden in the center. Bake in the center of the oven until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean, 50 to 55 minutes. Let cool for 30 minutes. Unmold the cake onto a serving platter and top with the remaining marmalade and the remaining ¼ cup walnuts. Serve warm or at room temperature.
In a sentimental introduction to this solid cookbook, Guarnaschelli, executive chef at Butter Restaurant in New York City and a familiar face from the Food Network, lists the cookbooks that constituted her mother’s reference section. That list includes The Silver Palate Cookbook, which this book certainly emulates in the way that it sits squarely at the crossroads of the need to get food on the table and the desire to make meals as enjoyable as they are reliable. Rather than the standard breakdown by courses, chapters here are theme based: there’s one on sauces and dressings that contains nine different vinaigrettes and another titled “Supermarket Mushrooms Made Sexy.” A chapter on Italian-American classics (a logical inclusion for someone who identifies as “the daughter of two Italian Americans”) includes eggplant parmigiana, but the chapter on Italian-American cookies confounds somewhat with oatmeal cookies that incorporate quinoa and fairly standard brownies and chocolate-chip cookies. While the recipes here are not particularly innovative, a Caesar salad with black-pepper steak and a hearty bowl of brisket soup with dumplings certainly appeal. The instructions are clearly conveyed, and Guarnaschelli nicely chronicles the changes in a shifting culinary landscape. (Sept.)
"Alex is an extraordinary cook, whether in her restaurant or at home cooking for her daughter. You'll find gems to return to again and again in this wonderful new collection of recipes."
—Giada De Laurentiis
"Alex is a one-of-a-kind cook, seamlessly weaving her expert cooking tips into one dream sequence of recipes that you absolutely must have."
"It's a quirky, comforting collection that aspires to be a Silver Palate for a new age, the kind of reliable resource you'd turn to again and again."
"Unlike many cookbooks by star chefs, Guarnaschelli's book is extremely approachable. The recipes don't have a long laundry list of ingredients, and the directions are clear and detailed."From the Publisher
★ 11/15/2017Library Journal
Celebrity chef Guarnaschelli (Old-School Comfort Food), a recurring judge on Food Network's Chopped, shares her go-to favorites for everyday cooking, from a one-pot veal osso buco to an effortless apple tart. Here, 300 recipes—mostly Italian and American comfort foods, along with a handful of French and Asian dishes—cover wide-ranging categories, including snacks, sauces, fruit condiments, and cocktails. Simple indulgences such as warm bar nuts, black pepper steak and caesar salad, and dark chocolate muffins will tempt many readers, especially during colder months. VERDICT A standout collection of elegant, timeless foods. Even the simplest recipes taste superb.