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Nominations for April 2014 Cookbook of the Month (COTM)

Hello Chowhounds

I hope this post finds you all well in your respective corners of the globe!

We are now taking nominations for the April COTM. Please use this thread to discuss and nominate any cookbooks that you may be interested in cooking from throughout April. Please indicate your nomination by including the book title in CAPITAL LETTERS. Nominations will remain open till 8 pm pacific time (GMT -8) on Thursday March 13th.

Many of us are still in the grips of winter, but I am sure others will be turning the corner into better weather in April, it will be exciting to see what everyone feels like cooking. Will it be more comfort food or will we see the first suggestions of lighter fare from some?

Until then, happy nominating all!

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  1. I'm going to get the ball rolling with JAPANESE SOUL COOKING. I've just recently acquired it and there is lots of interesting stuff in there, plus there is a good deal of variety. I think it has been nominated before, but in case some people aren't familiar with it I would say it is meant to be Japanese home cooking with a comfort food angle.

    There are chapters on, Ramen, Gyoza, Curry, Tonkatsu (breaded cutlets), Japanese style croquettes, Kara - Age (deep fried proteins), Tempura, Okonomiyaki (savoury pancakes), Donburi (Rice bowls), Soba, Udon, Fried rice, and Yoshoku which is the Japanese take on some western style preparations.

    I've only made the Dashi and the Gyudon thus far but I was pleased with the results from both. Plus I'm taken with the style and tone of the book.

    3 Replies
    1. re: delys77

      I have this book! Must make time to actually read it rather than scan quickly.

      1. re: delys77

        I would like to nominate JAPANESE SOUL COOKING as well. We are moving into a new house next week; and can't wait to start cooking again. We have been living at my Mom's house for the last 5 months, so looking forward to having our own space and kitchen again.


      2. ISABEL'S CANTINA by Isabel Cruz

        Since so many of you expressed an interest as of late in this little known book I've decided to nominate it. Copies were available on Amazon for mere pennies but it looks as if a lot of you bought recently so the current price is looming at about $8.00. The book is not yet indexed on EYB.

        Here are some links so you can familiarize yourselves:



        There is also a fairly long discussion about this book on A Cookbook a Week Thread. Link to follow.

        3 Replies
        1. re: dkennedy


          So now that I ended up buying the book and have made a few things, it is a good weeknight book. I think I could easily cook a number of things from this book. Hopefully we won't have snow next month because there are some recipes for the grill I'd like to try.

          1. re: dkennedy

            Definitely game for ISABEL'S CANTINA. I'm making something from it tonight and one of the sauces (cilantro/cucumber/lime) was roundly cheered when made and tasted yesterday.

            1. re: dkennedy

              Isabel's Cantina is in my neck of the woods. I've eaten there many times and can honestly say it is one of the best breakfast spots in San Diego. When my nephew comes to visit I have to take him there at least once :-)

              I've also eaten at most of the other restaurants and they are solid. Barrio Star is very good for Mexican in a city consumed by taco shops on every other corner.

              The Bhudda Bowls, Power Breakfast Bowls, Dragon Potatoes, Blackberry Pancakes are all delicious and easy to make.

            2. POK POK
              I've been reading the thread that MelMM started, and now I want to cook something from this book. I just got notice that the copy I reserved at the library is in. YIPEE!

              2 Replies
              1. re: stockholm28

                Also inspired by MelMM's thread, and emboldened by a successful execution of the Kai Kaphrao Khai Dao (Stir-Fried Chicken With Hot Basil) tonight. I will try to get my hands on a copy of the book to see how many of the recipes look doable. But I am leaning towards also nominating this one. Just don't want to do it sight unseen.

                1. re: greeneggsnham

                  POK POK
                  Got the book. Totally inspired to cook from it.

                1. POK POK

                  I've been enjoying the thread and ordered the book. It's sitting in my kitchen tempting me.

                    1. re: emily

                      I'll second JAPANESE FARM FOOD

                      1. re: emily

                        I'll also second HAKKA. Excited to cook from that one. So far only tried one thing - want to try more.

                      2. SIMPLE FRENCH FOOD &/or THE FRENCH MENU COOKBOOK Richard Olney

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: qianning

                          I second SIMPLE FRENCH FOOD by Olney. I am just diving into this and I can't wait to cook something from it.

                        2. DAVID THOMPSON MONTH or POK POK.
                          Swimsuit season is coming, Thai food is good for that sort of thing :)

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: alliegator

                            Both of those will tempt me to adding yet another title to my collection, but one I wouldn't mind getting.

                                  1. re: borisabrams

                                    Hi Boris, if you intended to nominate David Thomson month please enter your nomination in all caps.

                            1. THE COOKING OF THE EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN by Paula Wolfert- I always long to cook from this selection but forever am distracted by other cookbooks.

                              I could also go for SOUL OF A NEW CUISINE, maybe alongside another African book?

                              ..or THE FOOD OF MOROCCO. I guess I'm on a Wolfert kick....

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: Allegra_K

                                I can easily get behind all things Paula Wolfert.

                              2. Paula Woolfert has had 2 COTMs 2 years apart so one can still cook and report on those threads..

                                January 2008 Cookbook of the Month: The Slow Mediterranean Kitchen by Paula Wolfert

                                November 2010 Cookbooks of the Month: WOLFERT's World of Food and The Cooking of Southwest France

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: Gio

                                  Thank you for reminding me about The SW France COTM. I just made something out of this yesterday so I'll be sure to post it now!

                                2. POK POK

                                  I ate there earlier this year in Portland and it's so, so good.

                                  1. Just sticking a toe in the thread. I love all the nominations so far.

                                      1. re: Gio

                                        Actually I could also cook from HAKKA

                                      2. I'd gladly cook from any of the books nominated.

                                        POK POK (inspired by the "Cooking from" thread) or
                                        SIMPLE FRENCH FOOD (purchased the book after last month's nomination thread...I couldn't resist the song of the siren)

                                          1. MelMM has me convinced that I must get (and thus I nominate) POK POK.

                                            6 Replies
                                            1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                              You really must :) It's not only a book full of recipes, It's a fascinating read about the Ricker's time in Thailand and the people who taught him. It's moved firmly into my top 3 cookbooks along with Thai Food and Thai Street Food.

                                              1. re: alliegator

                                                Wow, that is some high praise indeed!

                                                1. re: Allegra_K

                                                  For what it's worth, it's also coming from a Thai food junkie ;)

                                                2. re: alliegator

                                                  I've read a little about Ricker and am dying to get to one of his restaurants. I've waited until now on the cookbook because I need a nudge to fix Asian food. MelMM nudged, and you just pushed me right over, alliegator.

                                                  Now I hope it wins!

                                                  1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                    And if it doesn't, Mel's thread is great to contribute to and to discuss all kinds of things :)

                                                    1. re: herby

                                                      True, true. Mel's photos have me drooling.

                                              2. POK POK - I'd better nominate it, hadn't I?

                                                ISABEL'S CANTINA would be my next choice.

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: MelMM

                                                  MelMM... I would think so. You have started a pok pok revolution! Well done. :-)

                                                2. SIMPLE FRENCH FOOD; ISABEL's CANTINA

                                                  1. Hello all
                                                    Just a reminder than nominations close tonight at 8pm pacific. We can all see that Pok Pok has many nominations, but it looks like two other books are tied for the next most nominations. If one pulls ahead then we will have two books sparring for the final vote, but if not I suppose we will have three.

                                                    1. LUNCH AT THE SHOP: THE ART AND PRACTICE OF THE MIDDAY MEAL
                                                      by Peter Miller, Melissa Hamilton, Christopher Hirsheimer

                                                      Small book but it reminds you to slow down and appreciate a work lunch.

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: MiniMonster

                                                        This book was published 11 March 2014 and will be released on 1 April.
                                                        35 Recipes by the Canal House team. Interesting concept:
                                                        "It may only be a salad or a soup or a sandwich, but he and his team put it together every day, with no formal kitchen, no formal table, no pans, no cooktops." I wonder if there's enough gripping recipes to make to sustain it for an entire month.


                                                      2. My first time voting on this thread and I want to nominate POK POK. I have the ebook and should really start cooking from it.

                                                        1. POK POK
                                                          DAVID THOMPSON MONTH