Table talk: December 2012
The buzz on Tulsa’s tastiest products, restaurants and events.
Christmas cookbook roundup
If you happen to ask me what I want for Christmas, odds are that several of the answers will be cookbooks. Here is a sampling of the gorgeous tomes hitting the market just in time for the holidays. And yes, they are all on my list.
“Martha’s American Food: A Celebration of Our Nation’s Most Treasured Dishes, from Coast to Coast,” by Martha Stewart, Clarkson Potter, 2012
The talented food editors of Martha Stewart Living Magazine create the majority of recipes published in both the magazines and books. This one is no exception.
A not-so-basic collection of American cooking is everything you love and hate about our cuisine here in the States. The editors tackle everything from Sloppy Joes to cheese balls, making each recipe not only gorgeously appetizing but delicious, as well.
This is the ideal gift for anyone who wants all of the American food “classics” in one volume.
“Bouchon Bakery,” by Thomas Keller and Sebastien Rouxel, Artisan, 2012
I will hop at the chance to try almost anything with Thomas Keller’s name on it. I was amazed at “The French Laundry” (as well as the forthcoming cookbook), adored “Ad Hoc” (it has been the inspiration for many a dinner) and fell in love with the pastries at the Bouchon Bakery.
Finally, Keller and co-author Sebastien Rouxel, executive pastry chef for the Thomas Keller Restaurant Group, have released a companion book from the bakery. In this gorgeous (would you expect anything else?) cookbook you will find a cross section of French pastry culture (think macarons and mille-feuilles) as well as treats inspired from Keller’s American childhood. You must try the TKOs and Oh Ohs (Keller’s take on Oreos and Hostess’ Ho Hos).
“Jerusalem: A Cookbook,” by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi, Ten Speed Press, 2012
A collection of more than 120 recipes exploring the flavors of Jerusalem, this is one of my favorite cookbooks of 2012. It is written by the New York Times bestselling author of “Plenty.”
London chef and restaurateur Yotam Ottolenghi and his friend (and co-owner of his restaurants) Sami Tamimi explore the vibrant cuisine of their home city. They grew up in the same place and at the same time, but separately: Ottolenghi was raised Jewish; Tamimi grew up Palestinian.
This stunning cookbook features recipes of their cross-culture — from vegetables (Charred Baby Okra with Tomato and Preserved Lemon) to desserts (Clementine and Almond Cake).
“The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook,” by Deb Perelman, Knopf, 2012
As a food blogger for TulsaPeople.com, I often spend hours pouring over the Internet, stealing glances from other people’s food blogs. Deb Perelman has one of my favorites, Smitten Kitchen, and her long-awaited cookbook is finally here.
Perelman, a home cook and photographer as well as a celebrated food blogger, founded her award-winning blog on the premise that cooking should be fun, delicious and approachable for the everyday cook. Perelman’s first cookbook features more than 100 new recipes, as well as a few favorites from her site, all illustrated with her gorgeous photographs.
Look forward to savory treats, including Tomato Shortcakes (featured on the cover), Cauliflower Pesto and Mushroom Bourguignon, as well as her popular sweets. I can’t wait to try the Buttered Popcorn Cookies.
New and Notable
Lee Brennan opened The Rusty Crane in mid-October in an old, neglected glass factory in the middle of the bustling Brady Arts District. He’s hoping the spot, filled with dining tables as well as comfy sofas, will become a neighborhood joint for friends and family to hang out. A 2,500-square-foot patio should help with that.
The eclectic menu was birthed in the kitchens of his friends and family members … Mediterranean tacos, spinach nachos, mango-coconut tilapia and the signature Yumladas are popular choices. The quirky interior retains much of the previous tenant’s history — Brennan fashioned a booth inside an old freight elevator.
The Rusty Crane: 109 N. Detroit Ave., 918-947-5454, www.therustycranetulsa.com