Books We Love: At My Table, from James Beard Award-Winning Colman Andrews

Categories: Books

James Beard Award-winning writer and editor Colman Andrews is known to many for his role as a co-founder for Saveur magazine as well as for his deep expertise on Spanish and Irish cuisine. The East Coast author has written about food, music, art and culture for Bon Appetit, Food & Wine, Travel & Leisure, New West, Gourmet, Creem, The Hollywood Reporter. Post-Saveur, he signed on as editorial director to The Daily Meal, an online food and drink site. Now Andrews has penned a new book called My Usual Table (Harper Collins, $25.99) on the notable restaurants that have defined dining history and his life.

The book is a fun read and covers hot spots such as El Bulli, Trader Vic's and Chasen's that are now shuttered but not forgotten. Andrews will be in the Bay Area next month & dished with us on where he'd like to eat and whether or not he'd catch up with his longtime pal Alice Waters.

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Here's the Trailer for Josey Baker's New Bread Cookbook

Categories: Books, Bread, Video

He may get most of the press these days for his $4 toast, but we're longtime fans of Josey Baker's crusty loaves, and in interviews have found him to be a smart, articulate guy willing to nerd out about all things bread for hours. That's why we're excited about his new cookbook, Josey Baker Bread: Get Baking - Make Awesome Bread - Share the Loaves, out from Chronicle April 15. In this teaser, Baker describes it as the book he wishes he'd had when he was just starting out a few years ago, back when he was a science teacher who found himself drawn to the doughy, yeasty stuff.

See also: There Will Be Bread: The Newest Development in Food Culture Is Also the Oldest

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Watch an Animated Michael Pollan Talk on How Cooking Can Change Your Life

Categories: Books, Video

By now most of us are familiar with Michael Pollan's no. 1 food rule: "Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants." He developed that thesis further in his new book, Cooked, in which he hypothesizes that the food you eat doesn't matter as much as who makes it -- that is, whether it's made by an individual or a corporation.

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Last-Minute Gift Ideas for Your Foodie Friends

Flickr/ KieuvyNguyen
Food-loving friends can be hard to shop for. They seem to already own every kitchen gadget imaginable, have shelves full of cookbooks and a stocked bar. Lucky for you, they're always hungry for more. So here's our last-minute gift guide that will satisfy your friend's never-ending appetite.

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PDX Chefs Invade SF

As proud Bay Area dwellers, we boastfully tout San Francisco as the food capital of the West. But if we were to concede to a runner up, a talented but still maturing, younger sister, that city would inarguably be Portland. In 2008, it captured our attention with its food trucks, and we have kept a finger on the pulse of their food scene ever since. Two of those chefs at the forefront of the growth, Andy Ricker and Gabriel Rucker, are paying a visit to San Francisco.

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Bugs, Brains, and Balut: Dana Goodyear on Her New Book About America's Extreme Food Culture

Categories: Books

"Bugs, horses, brains, whale; leaves, weeds, ice cream flavored with lichen-covered logs." This list of dubiously edible foods begins New Yorker writer Dana Goodyear's fascinating new book, Everything That Moves: Renegade Chefs, Fearless Eaters, and the Making of a New American Food Culture, her exploration of an emerging American cuisine -- the cuisine of the extreme. The book follows dozens of strange and sometimes stomach-turning meals, some of which will be recognizable to devoted readers of Goodyear in The New Yorker, but all of which interrogate the boundaries of foods which Americans have long considered "inedible" due to ethical, legal, and social taboos.

See also: Slimy Yet Satisfying: Could You Eat Insects For Dinner?
Why You Probably Shouldn't Eat Lion Meat

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San Francisco: A Food Biography Tells the Story of the Bay Area's Rise to Culinary Nirvana

Ever since I moved to San Francisco, I've been looking for a certain resource -- a history of the food of the region, from the Native American times to more or less the present. And it wasn't until I received food historian Erica J. Peters' new book, San Francisco: A Food Biography, that I realized I hadn't been able to find it before because it hadn't been written yet.

It's a dense historical volume, more suited to dipping into as a resource than sitting and reading from cover to cover, but it's packed with fascinating information about the formations of the Bay Area's rich food culture. Whether you want to learn about the origins of Rice-a-Roni (originally a Lebanese treat), the rise of tamales in the Mission, or the actual history of some of S.F.'s oldest restaurants, it's in the book -- as well as an outline of the diverse immigrant groups that came to the city and influenced its cuisine.

See also: Wednesday Taste Talk at SFCS: What Does California Cuisine Mean, Anyways?
Was The Mimosa Invented in S.F.?
Re-Visiting the Hangtown Fry, the Dish That Epitomizes Gold Rush California

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Chef Daniel Boulud on Where He Plans to Go During This Weekend's S.F. Book Tour

Categories: Books

Photo courtesy of
Chef Daniel Boulud
World-renowned French chef Daniel Boulud first visited our fair city in 1981 and by all accounts was a fan (more on that soon). Now he oversees an empire of restaurants in New York, Miami, Palm Beach, London, Toronto, Montreal, Beijing, and Singapore, though is based mainly in New York. Chef Boulud returns to San Francisco this month for his book tour for DANIEL: My French Cuisine (Hachette Book Group, $60).

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New Mission-Centric Cookbook Pairs Restaurants with Local Artists

Arts & Eats/Steven Geeter
If you've ever wanted an illustrated recipe for Farina's pesto, La Taqueria's hot sauce, or El Rio's margarita, you're in luck. Arts & Eats is a new cookbook that pairs more than 25 Mission restaurants with artists from Creativity Explored, a neighborhood arts organization, and benefits both it and the animal rescue organization Creative Rescue.

See also: Talking In the Charcuterie With Fatted Calf's Toponia Miller & Taylor Boetticher
Inside the California Food Revolution with Joyce Goldstein
Mark Bittman's New Vegan Mantra Leaves Room for Play

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Wednesday Taste Talk at SFCS: What Does California Cuisine Mean, Anyways?

Courtesy of San Francisco Cooking School
San Francisco Cooking School
Once you've gobbled up Joyce Goldstein's latest book, Inside the California Food Revolution, you may find yourself wanting to mull over the weighty topics with others -- what does California cuisine really mean, anyways, and does it depend on who you ask? Tomorrow night at a Taste Talk event at the San Francisco Cooking School, check out a fun and bookish event that promises face time with area culinary stars and a coffee and dessert bar from Neighbor Bakehouse and Crumb.

See also: Inside the California Food Revolution with Joyce Goldstein

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