It is time to talk books for your favorite foodie for the holiday season!

What would the holidays be without a cookbook from the Barefoot Contessa, AKA Ina Garten.  Her latest one MODERN COMFORT FOOD does not disappoint.  During this pandemic, we all need comfort food and Ina shares 85 new recipes that will give you solace. Many of these dishes are inspired by childhood favorites—but with the volume turned way up, such as Cheddar and Chutney Grilled Cheese sandwiches (the perfect match for Ina’s Creamy Tomato Bisque), Smashed Hamburgers with Caramelized Onions, and the crispiest hash browns that are actually made in a waffle iron! Other favorites not to be missed include: potato galettes with smoked salmon; baked rigatoni with lamb ragù; shellfish & chorizo stew; smashed hamburgers with caramelized onions; Provençal zucchini gratin; and milk chocolate Oreo ice cream.

Christopher Kimball plus Milk Street equal amazing recipes in the new book MILK STREET COOKISH: Throw it Together: Big Flavors. Simple Techniques. 200 Ways to Reinvent Dinner. by Chris Kimball, utilizing simple-to-organize recipes, requiring easy-to-find ingredients for weeknight recipes.  Standouts include: fennel and celery root salad with pecans; seared and steamed green beans and tomato and feta; Italian farro and vegetable soup; bucatini with sweet corn and scallions; Greek-style beef and orzo stew; almond, caper, and herb-crusted chicken cutlets; and salt and pepper butterscotch pudding.  This is the perfect book for your foodie friends for the holiday.

HAWKSWORTH: The Cookbook by multi award-winning Canadian Chef David Hawksworth, with Chef Stéphanie Noël, is a stunning cookbook full of cleverly developed recipes that showcase his innovative recipes.  Hawksworth is a celebration of Chef Hawksworth’s career to date, with recipes ranging from his time training in London with Michelin-starred chefs, to Ouest, the first restaurant where he served as head chef, to opening his own fine dining restaurant.  This is a wonderful cookbook for to gift to your favorite foodie who likes sophisticated recipes including: yellowtail crudo, avocado, ponzu; spicy chicken and green papaya salad; potato gnocchi, roasted tomato sauce, burrata, and basil; Thai fish curry; grilled hanger steak, red onion agrodolce, gorgonzola butter; and double lemon tart, confit lemon zest.

OLD WORLD ITALIAN: Recipes and Secrets from Our Travels in Italy by Mimi Thorisson, a French cook and writer living with her family between Médoc, France, and Turin, Italy.  The author explores the beautiful coasts and countryside of Italy in this beautifully photographed cookbook featuring simple, but wonderfully authentic recipes. This book captures this husband and wife on their journey around this Italian culinary Mecca, from Tuscany to Umbria to Naples and more. Standouts include:  zucchini blossom fritters stuffed with mozzarella and anchovies; pumpkin ravioli with brown butter, chestnut, and sage; spaghetti alla puttanesca; bone marrow risotto; branzino baked in salt crust; roast pork with balsamic vinegar and red wine; and vanilla ricotta cream with chocolate sauce and orange zest.

One of my favorite restaurants in Manhattan is Il Buco.  I am so pleased that a cookbook from that restaurant called IL BUCO: Stories & Recipes by Dona Lennard with Joshua David Stein has just been published in honor of its twenty fifth anniversary.   Featuring more that 80 delicious recipes plus stories of the restaurant’s philosophy make this book a standout.  The author shares her incredible journey from antique shop owner to award-winning restaurateur. She reflects on the iconic ingredient-driven, farm-to-table Italian cooking that seduced palates and earned the loyalty of notoriously discriminating New York diners. Favorite recipes include: grilled calamari; pappa al pomodoro; pan roasted gnocchi; peppercorn-crusted ribeye; fried polenta; and chocolate budino.

MILK JAR COOKIES BAKEBOOK: Cookies, Cakes, Pies, and More for Celebrations and Every Day from the founder and owner of Milk Jar Cookies, Courtney Cowan features seventy-five recipes for adorable, incredibly tasty hand-rolled cookies, classic cakes and pies, no-bake treats, and homemade marshmallows. Milk Jar Cookies Bakebook more than delivers on owner Courtney Cowan’s motto, “Life’s short, eat cookies!” The Bakebook’s cookie recipes include all of Milk Jar’s specialty flavors, plus gluten-free variations, as well as easy recipes for homey cakes and pies; satisfying breakfast goodies; and impressive no-bake treats.

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