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California Cooking

Hawker Fare: Stories & Recipes from a Refugee Chef's Isan Thai & Lao Roots

Hawker Fare: Stories & Recipes from a Refugee Chef's Isan Thai & Lao Roots Lowest new price: $25.46
List price: $39.99
Author: James Syhabout

From chef James Syhabout of two–Michelin-star restaurant Commis, an Asian-American cookbook like no other—simple recipes for cooking home-style Thai and Lao dishes

James Syhabout’s hugely popular Hawker Fare restaurant in San Francisco is the product of his unique family history and diverse career experience. Born into two distinct but related Asian cultures—from his mother’s ancestral village in Isan, Thailand’s northeast region, and his father’s home in Pakse, Laos—he and his family landed in Oakland in 1981 in a community of other refugees from the Vietnam War. Syhabout at first turned away from the food of his heritage to work in Europe and become a classically trained chef.

After the success of Commis, his fine dining restaurant and the only Michelin-starred eatery in Oakland, Syhabout realized something was missing—and that something was Hawker Fare, and cooking the food of his childhood. The Hawker Fare cookbook immortalizes these widely beloved dishes, which are inspired by the open-air “hawker” markets of Thailand and Laos as well as the fine-dining sensibilities of James’s career beginnings. Each chapter opens with stories from Syhabout’s roving career, starting with his mother’s work as a line cook in Oakland, and moving into the turning point of his culinary life, including his travels as an adult in his parents’ homelands.

From building a pantry with sauces and oils, to making staples like sticky rice and padaek, to Syhabout’s recipe for instant ramen noodles with poached egg, Hawker Fare explores the many dimensions of this singular chef’s cooking and ethos on ingredients, family, and eating well. This cookbook offers a new definition of what it means to be making food in America, in the full and vibrant colors of Thailand, Laos, and California.

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Whole Food Slow Cooker Cookbook: Your Essential Guide to the 30 Day Whole Food Challenge and Living a Sustainable Whole Food Lifestyle

Whole Food Slow Cooker Cookbook: Your Essential Guide to the 30 Day Whole Food Challenge and Living a Sustainable Whole Food Lifestyle Lowest new price: $13.97
Lowest used price: $23.53
List price: $13.97
Author: Lauren Shelby

You've tried it all: Raw Food, Clean Eating, Low Carb - and so on. But you still haven't achieved your health and weight loss goals. Make this time different. Eating healthy Whole Food regularly has been shown to promote improved health and fat loss.

Enjoy dozens of amazing, healthy whole food meals you can easily prepare at home tonight in your slow cooker! Each and every recipe uses only 100% Whole Food-approved ingredients and includes key nutritional information so you can make informed choices.

Most of us have an unhealthy relationship with food because we don't fully understand its effects. We eat things that hurt our bodies, like fast food and sugar, and struggle with health problems that range from obesity to high blood pressure to digestive distress. The 30 Day Whole Food Challenge is a reset that has transformed countless lives. By eliminating certain food groups and cutting out sugar and processed junk, Whole Food enthusiasts fuel their bodies with high-quality meats, vegetables, fruit, and fats, and feel better than ever!

This book lays out everything you need to know about Whole Food, including what it is, why it works, and how to succeed for the full 30 days. You'll get to know the rules by heart and know what to expect in terms of the growing pains that accompany a significant change in diet, like headaches and fatigue. People also report feeling isolated and lonely because they can't eat out anymore, so we will walk you through how to find restaurants with Whole Food options. The book also contains a whole bunch of resources you can turn to as you begin your Whole Food journey.

Author and Whole Food enthusiast Lauren Shelby was moody, overweight, lethargic, and suffering from numerous discomforts when she tried a whole food "challenge." 30 days later she could feel the incredible difference eating real food can make. she adopted the simple principles of the whole food lifestyle: eat real, honest food. not a factory processed imitation.

Will you accept the challenge?

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Chez Panisse Menu Cookbook

Chez Panisse Menu Cookbook Lowest new price: $13.99
Lowest used price: $3.01
List price: $25.00
Author: Alice Waters
Brand: Brand: Random House

This timeless addition to the Chez Panisse paperback cookbook library assembles 120 of the restaurant's best menus, including galas, festivals, and special occasion meals that have become such gustatory celebrations. A full range of menus is featured, from picnics to informal suppers. Line drawings.


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California Dish: What I Saw (and Cooked) at the American Culinary Revolution

California Dish: What I Saw (and Cooked) at the American Culinary Revolution Lowest new price: $22.95
Lowest used price: $17.75
List price: $22.95
Author: Jeremiah Tower
Brand: Brand: Free Press

Widely recognized as the godfather of modern American cooking and a mentor to such rising celebrity chefs as Mario Batali, Jeremiah Tower is one of the most influential cooks of the last thirty years. Now, the former chef and partner at Chez Panisse and the genius behind Stars San Francisco tells the story of his lifelong love affair with food -- an affair that helped to spark an international culinary revolution.

Tower shares with wit and honesty the real dish on cooking, chefs, celebrities, and what really goes on in the kitchen. Above all, Tower rhapsodizes about food -- the meals choreographed like great ballets, the menus scored like concertos. No other book reveals more about the seeds sown in the seventies, the excesses of the eighties, and the self-congratulations of the nineties. No other chef/restaurateur who was there at the very beginning is better positioned than Jeremiah Tower to tell the story of the American culinary revolution.

Years back the standard Jeremiah Tower press kit claimed the master's hand in the development of everything to do with food just this side of the invention of fire. California cuisine? Café dining? Franco-Asian fusion food? All Jeremiah. Well, that was PR, a subject Tower addresses in his memoir of his life in food and the food business, California Dish: What I Saw (and Cooked) at the American Culinary Revolution. This isn't to say that Tower doesn't make his own argument for all his contributions, setting the record straight where he thinks the record has slipped into mythology. His contribution to the rise of Chez Panisse, for example. This is a man with an apparent lifelong habit of journal keeping. He isn't waiting for his own demise for the story to unfold. Rather, Tower tells all--his version of all--in the here and now, letting the chips fall where they may. The pleasure may be vicarious, but it-s a pleasure none the less.

In 50 years the organizing principle of this memoir, that the rise of California cuisine and who gets credit for what actually matters, may hold no water. But California Dish will remain invaluable as a memoir of the time by one of its more outlandish characters, a man who spent a good deal of his youth on ocean liners and in upscale hotel dining rooms. He shares all this in the spirit of James Beard's Delights and Prejudices, which documented an earlier time and way with food. Tower will be accused of cattiness, no doubt. And he is. He'll be accused of self-promotion. And he does. But he also lays on the praise where he believes it is due. When he admires other chefs and their work, he says so. In a series of scenes he returns to James Beard the dignity of his sexuality, like throwing the switch from two to three dimensions.

The first-person point-of-view often reveals much more about the writer than the writer ever intended. It's the nature of the beast. Tower may have been aiming at an improved press kit version of his life. But what press kit was ever poignant? For all the names of the famous, for all the celebrity happenings, the constant world travel, the designer labels, Jeremiah Tower seems a lonely man by book's end, a glass of fine champagne his best friend. --Schuyler Ingle


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Fields of Greens: New Vegetarian Recipes From The Celebrated Greens Restaurant

Fields of Greens: New Vegetarian Recipes From The Celebrated Greens Restaurant Lowest new price: $14.25
Lowest used price: $0.25
List price: $40.00
Author: Annie Somerville

The opening of Greens Restaurant on San Francisco Bay in 1979 changed forever the image of vegetarian cooking in America.  From the restaurant's imaginative mix of casual elegance, exciting tastes, and a subtle message of health and harmony, a distinctive cuisine was born that has continued to bring joy to many thousands of diners every year as well as to the hundreds of thousands of readers who delight in The Greens Cookbook. In its latest incarnation, the restaurant has evolved toward a lighter, leaner, simpler cuisine, one that keeps all the spirit and refinement of the original menu but depends more on the excitement of sparkling fresh produce and its integral relationship to the dishes it inspires.

In close to 300 original recipes, the new Greens style includes exuberant salads, soups, the legendary crusty Greens pizzas, curries and hearty stews, grilled vegetables, and intriguing turnovers made with filo pastry, tortillas, and savory doughs.  And of course there are heavenly breads and the famous desserts, like ginger pound cake with poached apricots and cherries.  This cornucopia of brilliant dishes focuses on tantalizing tastes, with a new simplicity, clarity, and liveliness as its hallmark.

Annie Somerville, the executive chef at Greens, goes right to the heart of the matter: extraordinary produce that's bursting with flavor, color, and texture.  Some of her favorites--like crinkly Bloomsdale spinach, candy-striped Chioggia beets, succulent Rosefir potatoes--are highlighted in the text for gardeners and farmers' market aficionados.  But the Greens style is above all accessible; ordinary red beets will be just fine if more exotic varieties are unavailable.  To help with availability, there's information on locating farmers' markets throughout the country as well as sources for plants, seeds, and local resources.

Because the garden is at the center of this book, readers are encouraged to try their hand, in tiny backyards and windowsill boxes if necessary.  Invaluable growing tips are offered from Green Gulch Farm, the source of much of the stunning produce served at the restaurant.  Other special features include a section on low-fat cooking and another on pairing wine with vegetarian food.

All of the abundance and exuberance that the title Fields of Greens implies is here, for the novice as well as the expert, for simple last-minute meals as well as extravagant occasions.  For truly inspired contemporary vegetarian cooking, Fields of Greens is the essential sourcebook.

Annie Somerville trained under Deborah Madison, the founding chef at Greens Restaurant.  Under Somerville's guidance as executive chef, Greens has become a culinary landmark.  Her work has been featured in Gourmet, Food & Wine, Ladies' Home Journal, SF, and California magazine.  She also contributed to The Open Hand Cookbook and Women Chefs cookbook.



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Das Cookbook: German Cooking . . . California Style

Das Cookbook: German Cooking . . . California Style Lowest new price: $19.73
Lowest used price: $19.01
List price: $29.95
Author: Hans Rockenwagner

This modern German-Californian cookbook from longtime Los Angeles chef and restaurateur Hans Röckenwagner features sections on bread-making (yes, pretzel bread!), holiday treats, and bar snacks, along with the most popular recipes from his several Los Angeles restaurants, including 3 Square Cafe on famed Abbot Kinney Boulevard and Cafe Röckenwagner in Brentwood.

Hans Röckenwagner's background spans thirty years of cooking in Germany, Switzerland, Chicago, and Los Angeles. In the 1980s, he won international fame for his fine-dining restaurant in Santa Monica, Röckenwagner; today, he owns several LA-area bakery/cafes and a large wholesale bakery. Hans is known for his individuality, innovative dishes, and his craftsmanship in designing and building his restaurants (he is also a master woodworker). This is his second cookbook.

Jenn Garbee is a food reporter and editor who has written for the Los Angeles Times, LA Weekly, Cooking Light, Saveur, and more. An expert recipe tester and developer, Jenn has a culinary degree from Le Cordon Bleu and has worked in professional kitchens across Los Angeles. She is also the author of Secret Suppers and the co-author of the 2015 St. Martin's Press book, Tomatomania!

Wolfgang Gussmack has been Hans's chef de cuisine since 2012. A native of Graz, Austria, Wolfgang started his culinary career cooking spätzle for his family's restaurant and gasthaus. This experience earned him a spot in Austria's only two-star Michelin restaurant and subsequently led him to renowned kitchens in Italy and France before he came to Los Angeles.

Photographer Staci Valentine is based in Los Angeles; her other cookbooks include The Perfect Peach.

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Firehouse Food: Cooking with San Francisco's Firefighters

Firehouse Food: Cooking with San Francisco's Firefighters Lowest new price: $35.00
Lowest used price: $13.30
List price: $24.95
Author: George Dolese
Brand: Chronicle Books

Firefighters are famous for their food and it s no wonder since they cook their own meals seven days a week. All that practice, not to mention the peer pressure, makes for some of the best recipes in town, especially when that town is a culinary mecca like San Francisco. Firehouse Food introduces firehouse life, its brave denizens, and more than 100 of their best recipes. We meet greenhorns and veterans, retirees and local characters, all the while enjoying terrific meals designed to cook up easy and satisfy the whole crew. The recipes reflect the diversity of the San Francisco Fire Department personnel themselves-Latin-American, Asian, African, Italian, Irish, Eastern European-with a melting pot of delectable flavors. From barbecue by the experts to a Pineapple Upside Down Cake just like mom s, these dishes are forgiving enough for anyone to try, and generous enough for everyone to enjoy. With color photographs of meals, downtime, cookery in action, and of course the food itself, Firehouse Food illustrates the daily routine that turns a firehouse into a family.


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Best of the Best from California: Selected Recipes from California's Favorite Cookbooks

Best of the Best from California: Selected Recipes from California's Favorite Cookbooks Lowest new price: $8.12
Lowest used price: $1.54
List price: $16.95
Author: Gwen McKee
Brand: Brand: Quail Ridge Press

For hundreds of years people have flocked to California in search of fame and fortune. From the gold rush trails to the Hollywood Walk of Fame, farms and vineyards to Silicon Valley, California cooking is truly a melting pot of flavors.

Best of the Best from California preserves the unique taste of CaliforniaÂ’s food heritage with over 500 favorite recipes from more than 100 of the Golden StateÂ’s most outstanding cookbooks.

There are many recipes that originated in California, like Cobb Salad, Cioppino, Crab Louis, fish tacos, date shakes, sourdough bread. Plus dishes from countries all over the world... from sushi to souvlaki... that bring their own spices and methods to the California table. Set your taste buds to enjoy fresher, lighter, healthier, prettier, more delectable cuisine than ever before—Fisherman’s Wharf Garlic Prawns, Pebble Beach Pineapple Pizza, Espresso Pecan Fudge Pie, and many more. There are also beautiful photographs, original illustrations, fascinating and informative facts about the state, plus a convenient cross-referenced index. The catalog of contributing cookbooks is a cookbook lover’s dream.

From the slow cooking of the Gold Rush Days to faster-paced meals of the computer age, California cuisine has always been something to write home about... and still is. From designer to down-home, here is what the Best of the Best from California has to offer.


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California Pizza Kitchen Pasta, Salads, Soups, And Sides

California Pizza Kitchen Pasta, Salads, Soups, And Sides Lowest new price: $5.50
Lowest used price: $0.10
List price: $22.00
Author: Larry Flax
Brand: Brand: William Morrow Cookbooks

At California Pizza Kitchen restaurants across the country, many of the favorite dishes (and most-requested recipes) are not the pizzas! Customers keep coming back for the boldly flavored pastas, soups, salads, and side dishes. The follow-up to the bestselling California Pizza Kitchen Cookbook, this new cookbook serves CPK customers just what they ordered -- secret restaurant recipes, never available before. With gorgeous color photographs of the finished dishes throughout the book, CPK fans will be tempted by recipes for Oriental Chicken Salad, Spinach Artichoke Dip, and Kung Pao Spaghetti, to name just a few.

The new cookbook will include stories and anecdotes from CPK employees from around the country about favorite recipes, customers, and more. In the generous spirit they're best known for, CPK owners Larry Flax and Rick Rosenfield will donate all royalties and proceeds from sales of the book in the restaurants to children's charities.

Just like the first CPK cookbook, expect Pasta, Salads, Soups, and Sides to be one of the hottest cookbooks of the year. The CPK chain of restaurants is bigger than ever, and thi5 new hook will be published in the cool California style that has made the first book and the restaurants themselves so popular.


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What's Gaby Cooking: Everyday California Food

What's Gaby Cooking: Everyday California Food Lowest new price: $29.99
List price: $29.99
Author: Gaby Dalkin

In What’s Gaby Cooking Everyday California, Gaby Dalkin shares more than 125 of her favorite simple and fresh recipes and offers a glimpse into what it’s like to “go coastal.” It’s about always having something tasty to eat, thanks to handy and delicious pantry staples (avocado oil! quinoa! limes! dark chocolate!), as well as an arsenal of easy and healthy recipes, like Chimichurri Cauliflower Rice Bowl with Grilled Fish, Taco Skillet Bake, and Street Corn Pizza. The book covers all the staples—avocado toast, grain bowls, greens, carbs, healthy mains, cocktails, and more.

For Gaby, California is not so much a place but a state of mind, and this cookbook proves that no matter where you live, you can still apply the same philosophy. All it takes is finding the freshest produce you can, stocking up on some versatile pantry staples, and keeping flavors and techniques simple. After that, the only thing left to do is kick back, pour yourself a California Girl Margarita, and listen for those ocean waves.

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