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October 2010 Cookbook of the Month Nominations (Through Tues., 9/14)

Once again, it is time for the Chowhound Cookbook of the Month nominations. The Cookbook of The Month is open to anyone who wants to participate. Simply make a nomination, then vote and then cook. There are no dues to participate; no secret handshake to learn. Join us!

Please note that nominations are counted and only the top vote getters make it to the voting round. If you want your choice to advance, make sure you participate in the nomination round.

But please type the title of the book you are nominating in ALL CAPITALS, if you want your nomination to be counted. Nominations will be open until Midnight, EDT on TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 14.

Here is a list of the 49 previous COTM selections:
http://www.chow.com/cookbook_of_the_m...

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  1. OK, so here's a random thought -- though there have been many Italian books, there haven't been any regional ones, and I was recently looking through a book I own that I would like to cook from more -- NAPLES AT TABLE by Arthur Schwartz. That, or Ada Boni's classic, ITALIAN REGIONAL COOKING would be very interesting to me. Both have the advantage of not being new and should be available in libraries or from used book sellers.

    23 Replies
    1. re: roxlet

      I have Arthur Schwartz's book and like it very much. Another southern Italian regional book I like is, "Sicilian Home Cooking: Family Recipes from Gangivecchio" by Giovanna Tornabene and Wanda Tornabene. A mother/daughter team who cook at their restaurant Gangivecchio.

      http://www.amazon.com/Sicilian-Home-C...

      However, since we recently did the two Italian books from the River Cafe... perhaps another theme might be in order. J/S

      BTW: does anyone have the new Dorie Greenspan book, "Around My French Table"?

      1. re: Gio

        I plan on getting that soon. Do you have it, and if you do, do you like it?

        I consider those River Cafe books to be sort of a British interpretation of Italian food, and I persist in my nomination of Naples at Table in that there has never been a regional Italian cookbook. I don't have the Tornabene book, though I have been meaning to get it, and I would also be happy to do a Sicilian cookbook (I'm half Sicilian and half Neapolitan, so this all makes sense, you see), but I think that Sicilian food, while distinct from Middle Eastern, can sometimes have flavors and ingredients that intersect (the use of currants springs immediately to mind).

        1. re: roxlet

          I don't have the Greenspan book but am considering it. I'm in the same boat geographically as you. My mother grew up in Trieste but went to university in Naples. My father's family came from Abruzzo. Frankly, if we do another Italian book in the future, I'd rather do a northern regional focus.

          1. re: roxlet

            I don't really agree with your opinion of the River Café books. You could equally say that the Schwartz is an American interpretation of Italian food. While I might be interested in the Naples at Table book at some point, I agree with Gio that it's too soon for another Italian book.

            1. re: greedygirl

              Well, I knew I'd hear it from you on that gg, but we can agree to disagree! Just from the perspective of my family, my family's cooking, and visits to Naples, I have to say that Schwartz's book is spot on. Clearly I don't have a bias against a non-Italian writing an Italian cookbook, and I feel that Naples at Table is extremely authentic despite the fact that Schwartz is not Italian. Schwartz is definitely not interpreting Italian food; it is very specific to the place.

              And Gio, as far as a northern regional focus goes, I feel that when you do Marcella, that is really what you are doing though she does not specifically state that. Again, just my opinion...

              1. re: roxlet

                From numerous visits to Italy, I'd say the River Café food is pretty authentic too. It's just not rooted in one region.

                I was interested to see that Schwartz has a cooking school near Paestum, which is where we were this summer.

                1. re: greedygirl

                  Id definitely support NAPLES AT TABLE its really an excellent regional book. It could be paired with another regional book as well. I have one of the Tournabene books - not sure it is the same one as above., Fall is a good time for ths food since we still have eggplants, peppers, etc galore. I have a dream of doing The Splendid Table, but I think that would be more for winter.

            2. re: roxlet

              I'd also be very interested in doing a Sicilian book sometime, and I've got that Sardinian cookbook that came out a few years back (sorry ... martinis in action right now, can't remember the title) and would love to do that one.

                1. re: The Dairy Queen

                  I have that book too and would be interested in cooking from it as well...

                  1. re: roxlet

                    ditto. Maybe SWEET MYRTLE AND BITTER HONEY and the SCHWARZ NAPLES book as a regional pair?

              1. re: Gio

                P.S. reply to Gio on Dorie's new book. I've purchased it through the Good Cook, but they say it won't ship until October. I know it goes against our desire to not cook from a new book, but what if we each asked for a copy of the new Dorie as a gift for whichever holiday we celebrate in December and cooked from it in January?

                ~TDQ

                1. re: The Dairy Queen

                  I'd be up for that because I put myself in the same boat...looked at the book on Sunday at B&N and man oh man does it look good...

                  1. re: buttertart

                    I'm off to Costco this morning (have run out of chocolate chips making endless batches of cookies for the Egyptians), and I am somehow hoping that it will be there. Fingers crossed!!

                    1. re: roxlet

                      I have a friend in France I am dragooned into taking those mongo bags of chocolate chips to when we go...get French chocolate in return, though..not complaining! Good luck w the book.

                      1. re: roxlet

                        roxlet: Are you saying that there's a Costco in Egypt??!! Or are you making cookies to ship?

                        1. re: oakjoan

                          She's back home and has (extremely ill-behaved) Egyptian house guests. I sure would be baking those louts any cookies.

                    2. re: The Dairy Queen

                      Ouch... I just saw this... did you see my reply to your query about Schwatrz's on-line recipes below?

                      Anyway, Pre-ordering Holiday gifts is not unheard of at Casa Gio. I could very easily do that for the Greenspan book. I was intrigued with her when I read in her blog that another group is signing up to cook through her new book. Those who sign up nominate and vote for the one recipe they'll all make during a certain time period. I *Think* that's the way it goes. They call it, "French Fridays with Dorie."

                      http://doriegreenspan.com/

                      1. re: Gio

                        She must be feeling the LOVE these days. I hope she's as nice as she seems in her books!

                        1. re: buttertart

                          I actually don't have any of her books... yet. The only one I'd heard of was her book on baking, and since I no longer do the baking I used do I passed it by. But her blog is interesting and I'm enjoying that.

                          BTW: are you voting for Love this month? LOL

                          1. re: Gio

                            Oops, no other way to emphasize here...but food is love, sin't it? ;-)

                            1. re: buttertart

                              Yes indeed. On so many levels...

                2. The original comment has been removed
                  1. As the weather cools, I'd love to have us do a German, Austrian, or Eastern European book. We've never come close to any of these cuisines, and they have a lot to offer. A couple of possibilities are THE NEW GERMAN COOKBOOK by Jean Anderson and Hedy Wurz, and GERMAN COOKING by Marianna Olszewska Heberle. There are many other possibilities.

                    7 Replies
                    1. re: pikawicca

                      The only books I have that fit vaguely in that category is East of Paris and a Hungarian cookbook. I guess that I don't really love German food, and being in Germany this summer did nothing for my desire to further explore the cuisine...

                      1. re: roxlet

                        Don't know where you were eating, but we were also in Germany this summer and had several incredible meals. Even our casual lunches were great. (Of course, white asparagus was in season, so that was a bonus.)

                        1. re: pikawicca

                          We were in Cologne and had pretty uninspiring food. I would say it went from bad to wurst, but then I'd have to hit myself.

                          1. re: roxlet

                            We had a superb lunch of sauteed trout, steamed potatoes (that tasted very buttery, but had no butter) and asparagus when we were in Cologne. I should say that I've lived in Germany on and off, and have a pretty good feel for what to avoid regarding restaurants. I'm always bemused when people say they don't like this cuisine. It's varied, like any other, and I think it's been defined by the lowest common denominator.

                            1. re: pikawicca

                              Well, we were not in the best position being near the convention center at a tournament hotel, but we tried to get some good meals without success. My DH has made some good German dishes in the past (his maltashen (sp?) zuppa was wonderful) but in general, cant say I am a fan of most of the German food I've tried. My BIL is German, so we get some authentic stuff from that end. Just not to my taste, I guess.

                      2. re: pikawicca

                        I feel like we've done Italian twice this year (Trattoria and the River Cafe Easy Books) so, I'd be up for Eastern European or German or Austrian.

                        ~TDQ

                        1. re: pikawicca

                          Interesting that you mention German books, Pika. I was thinking Austrian this afternoon but I thought that cuisine would probably be better suited to a winter month, or am I wrong? I've been to Germany but in the late Spring when it was still cool bordering on cold....

                        2. My favourite German Cookbook is Mimi Sheraton's "The German Cookbook". As for Hungarian, a friend brought me "The Gourmet's Cookbook" by Elek Magyar when he returned from Hungary in the 1970's, it is a wonderful (well-used!) source of authentic recipes.

                          4 Replies
                          1. re: Breadcrumbs

                            Id be more up for Russian (more variety) than Hungarian or German, if that is the direction folks want to go. Please to the Table, for example, is a pretty good and wide compilation.I love Hungarian but its too monochromatic -and high cholesterol -for a month

                            I too had a hard time identifying what I saw in the River Cafe book with Italian - its more of an Italian cooking style, and very simple (more like say Chez Panisse) than a regional italian book that carefully recreates a local cuisine.

                            1. re: jen kalb

                              Just back from a little googling (and I did notice that the Kolache threads are reappearing on CH) and I like the idea of a regional cookbook that emcompasses more of these cuisines. (Enough Italian for now.) I found two that look interesting and are available on Amazon, AND in my state's library network. They are:

                              All along the Danube: Recipes from Germany, Austria, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia, Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria. Author Marina Polvay. (Comes with a special chapter on Christmas along the Danube.

                              The Practical Encyclopedia of East European Cooking: the Definitive Collection of Traditional Recipes, from the Baltic to the Black Sea. By Lesley Chamberlain. This ones expensive new, but used editions are available on Amazon from $6.72

                              1. re: clamscasino

                                <All along the Danube: Recipes from Germany, Austria, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia, Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria. Author Marina Polvay. (Comes with a special chapter on Christmas along the Danube. >

                                That sounds very interesting, but I'd fear for a monthlong cookfest from it. Fear for my waistline, that is! ;D

                                1. re: ChefJune

                                  I thought it looked interesting too. I'll order it from the library and take a look at whether it truly would be a caloric disaster. Hey, after all, Michael Pollan says to cook/eat like your grandmother, and both mine and Mr. Clam's are represented in the above list.

                          2. Thai, maybe CRACKING THE COCONUT by Su-Mei Yu or David Thompson's THAI FOOD

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: Rubee

                              I would second Cracking the Coconut.