The Little Paris Kitchen: 120 Simple But Classic French Recipes by Rachel Khoo is a charming new book for the novice or advanced cook who love French cuisine.  This is a totally modern approach to formal Cordon Blue cookery making over staples such coq au vin served on skewers, croquet madams baked in muffin tins, and a fantastic crème brulée spiked with Indonesian long pepper.  The book is charmingly photographed and delightfully organized with easy to follow recipes.

A lovely book came across my desk with lots of fresh and interesting recipes called Cristina’s of Sun Valley Con Gusto! by Christina Ceccatelli Cook, celebrated Sun Valley Idaho restaurateur.  The Italian-born author is the founder and owner of Cristina’s Restaurant.  Her third and newest cookbook concentrates on the Tuscan region of Italy.  The photographs are gorgeous and the recipes are mouth-watering including bruschetta of strawberries and tomatoes; angel hair with prosciutto cotto and figs; pork osso buco with porchetta rub; and chocolate tartufo.

Every Grain of Rice: Simple Chinese Home Cooking by Fuchsia Dunlop is another book perfect for novice cook or experienced chef.  The photographs are mouth-watering and enticing.  The UK author is quite famous in England but we have the benefit of her recipes in this wonderful book.  Start with smoky eggplant with garlic or spinach with sesame sauce and then try the clams in black bean sauce or braised chicken with dried shiitake mushrooms.  I also love the spicy buckwheat noodles.

For those who just can’t live without their carbs, Pasta: Classic and Contemporary Pasta, Risotto,Crespelle, and Polenta Recipes (at Home with The Cul) by Gianni Scappin and Alberto Vanoli is a comprehensive guide to all things of the starch variety.  The book is seasonally organized with standouts including cannelloni with Swiss chard and fresh goat cheese; risotto with apple, walnuts, porcini mushrooms and Fontina cheese; semolina gnocchi with radicchio; and bread and dandelion dumplings.

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