NEW YEAR, NEW COOKING GAME PLAN
Crack Open One of These Eye-popping Cookbooks and Channel Your Inner Chef
By Robin Barr Sussman
Hungry to recreate your favorite restaurant fare? Whether enthused to grill the best steak ever, experiment with modern Italian fare, serve elegant breakfast dishes, or craving Tex-Mex comfort food with a twist, there’s a cookbook for that. For new flavors on your plate in 2019, feast your eyes on these cookbooks by Texas restaurateurs.
Perfectly Aged: 40 Years of Recipes and Stories From the Taste of Texas
The Taste of Texas steakhouse, a Memorial area fixture specializing in certified Angus beef, was founded by Edd and Nina Hendee in 1984. Perfectly Aged, penned by Nina, celebrates the Hendees’ story with recipes for the restaurant’s iconic dishes along with sides of history, humorous memories, and gorgeous food photography by local photog Debora Smail. In this section we’ve included the Brussels sprouts with bacon jam recipe from the award-winning cookbook.
www.tasteoftexas.com/perfectly-aged-40-years-of-recipes-and-stories-from-the-taste-of-texas , www.tasteoftexascookbook.com Jack Allen’s Kitchen
Chef Jack Gilmore’s cookbook features beloved American recipes from years of working in the restaurant industry including Jack Allen’s Kitchen, his namesake Austin restaurant. Co-authored by Jessica Dupuy (who also worked on the Uchi and Salt Lick cookbooks, to name a few), it includes stories detailing Jack Gilmore’s evolution as an acclaimed Texas chef and nods to his purveyors and local farmers. Whip up decadent Southern dishes like sweet potato bourbon gratin, tomato basil pie, pimento cheese and blackberry cobbler.
Tex-Mex: Traditions, Innovations, and Comfort Foods From Both Sides of the Border
Star chef and restaurateur Ford Fry, who has a restaurant empire dotting the south with three in Houston, debuts his first cookbook this spring, co-authored by Jessica Dupuy. Unlock the secret to retro puffy tostados with queso, piping hot Tex-Mex combo plates, a killer margarita and fine looking café style pancakes with buttermilk syrup. The hardcover book is richly photographed with dozens of recipes, playful histories and cooking tips.
The Seasoned Life: Food, Family, Faith, and the Joy of Eating Well
Chef Ayesha Curry is not from Texas but she has a new restaurant in Houston with San Francisco-based chef Michael Mina named International Smoke. The busy mom, celeb chef, Cover Girl model and wife of NBA MVP Stephen Curry invites readers into her home and shares 100 of her family’s favorite recipes. Simple, delicious choices include Stephen’s five ingredient pasta and quick citrus salmon. ayeshacurry.com
Fonda San Miguel: Forty Years of Food and Art
Updated and reissued to celebrate the landmark Austin restaurant’s four decades of success, this new edition cookbook presents more than 100 Mexican recipes. Expect many of Fonda San Miguel’s signature dishes like enchiladas suizas, sections on buying and cooking with chiles and other Mexican ingredients, best equipment to use, and mail-order sources. Artful photographs illustrate special dishes and works from the Fonda San Miguel art collection with notes on the artists. www.fondasanmiguel.com/cookbook
Houston Soups & Sips
Cookbook author Erin Hicks has compiled a vibrant book filled with soup recipes from the city’s favorite restaurant kitchens along with wine and beer pairings for each. Warm up with soup recipes including lemony avgolémono from Helen Greek Food and Wine, celery root velouté from Pax Americana, lentil soup from the original Carrabba’s, and dozens more. www.erinhickscooks.com/services
With Gratitude, Johnny Carrabba — Celebrating 30 Years of Recipes, Stories, and Family
Wickedly rich chicken “Bryan Texas,” fried calamari with pepperoncini marinara, and shrimp Damian are a few coveted recipes in Johnny Carrabba’s beautiful oversized format cookbook with images by award-winning Houston photographer Debora Smail. Expect about 100 Italian recipes from the original Carrabba’s, as well as his newest concepts Mia’s and Grace’s, laced with stories about the family history and snippets from Johnny about his staff, associates and customers. www.carrabbascookbook.com
TASTE OF TEXAS BRUSSELS SPROUTS WITH BACON JAM
According to Nina Hendee, even Edd — who loathed Brussels sprouts as a child — loves this hearty side dish of crispy Brussels sprouts, topped with a slightly smoky and sweet bacon jam. You can prepare the jam ahead of time and store tightly covered in the refrigerator.
2 pounds Brussels sprouts, trimmed and cut in half
3 cups vegetable oil
coarse Kosher salt
12 ounces sliced bacon
2 tablespoons bacon grease (reserved)
½ cup diced yellow onion
½ cup diced red onion
3 minced garlic cloves
¼ cup brown sugar
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon chili powder
¼ cup bourbon
3 tablespoons honey
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
½ teaspoon ground black
Heat vegetable oil in a large deep pot to 350 degrees. Fry the Brussels sprouts until slightly brown and crispy. Remove from the oil and drain on a plate lined with paper towels.
For the bacon jam, cook the bacon in a large skillet over medium-high heat, reserving 2 tablespoons of bacon grease for the jam. Drain the bacon on a paper towel-lined plate and allow to cool. Crumble the bacon into very small pieces and set aside.
Sauté the onions and garlic in the bacon grease until the onions are caramelized. Add the brown sugar, mix well, and cook for one minute. Add the paprika, chili powder, bourbon, honey and balsamic vinegar and simmer until the jam reaches a creamy consistency. Turn off the heat and season the jam with salt and pepper. Fold in the crumbled bacon.
Pile the fried Brussels sprouts in a serving dish and top with as much bacon jam as you’d like to use.
Yield: Eight servings