Cookbook Giveaway: Smoke & Pickles: Recipes and Stories from a New Southern Kitchen by Edward Lee (COMPLETED)

I believe there are two good indications that you’ve picked up an excellent cookbook; (a) Looking through it makes you hungry even if you just ate, and (b) you end up dog-earing more than half the recipes. This month’s cookbook giveaway (for me at least) easily meets those two criteria.

Congratulations to Eric in Knoxville for winning this month’s giveaway! Thanks to all those that participated and be sure to check in next month for another great cookbook giveaway!

I believe there are two good indications that you’ve picked up an excellent cookbook; (a) Looking through it makes you hungry even if you just ate, and (b) you end up dog-earing more than half the recipes. This month’s cookbook giveaway (for me at least) easily meets those two criteria. Smoke & Pickles: Recipes and Stories from a New Southern Kitchen by Chef Edward Lee is one of the best new cookbooks I’ve picked up, and this month is your chance to add it to your bookshelf!

Amazon.com blurb: Chef Edward Lee’s story and his food could only happen in America. Raised in Brooklyn by a family of Korean immigrants, he eventually settled down in his adopted hometown of Louisville, Kentucky, where he owns the acclaimed restaurant 610 Magnolia. A multiple James Beard Award nominee for his unique patchwork cuisine, Edward creates recipes–filled with pickling, fermenting, frying, curing, and smoking–that reflect the overlapping flavors and techniques that led this Korean-American boy to feel right at home in the South. Dishes like Chicken-Fried Pork Steak with Ramen Crust and Buttermilk Pepper Gravy; Collards and Kimchi; Braised Beef Kalbi with Soft Grits and Scallions; and Miso-Smothered Chicken all share a place on his table. Born with the storytelling gene of a true Southerner, Lee fills his debut cookbook with tales of the restaurant world, New York City, Kentucky, and his time competing on Top Chef, plus more than 130 exceptional recipes for food with Korean roots and Southern soul. 

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO ENTER?

Entries are now closed for this giveaway. 

For your chance to win, you can do any (or all!) of the following:

The more you do, the more chances you have to win! The giveaway will end at 8:00 pm EDT on Thursday, August 15th. The winner will be announced the following day.

Giveaway rules: Winner must be 18 years of age, and have a mailing address in the United States or Canada (sorry everyone else — it’s a postage thing). Once notified, the winner must reply within 12 hours, otherwise the runner-up will be notified. The winner will be announced here, and on Twitter. Make sure you follow @foodiejournal!

 

Cookbook Giveaway: Ideas in Food – Great Recipes and Why They Work (COMPLETED)

There are plenty of cookbooks that give you excellent recipes to follow, but more often than not many of these are just straight-forward, simplified instructions with little insight in to the how or the why. Enter Ideas in Food: Great Recipes and Why They Work, easily one of my favorite cookbooks thanks to some extremely smart writing by Aki Kamozawa and H. Alexander Talbot. 

Thanks to everyone that entered. Congratulations to Dennis on winning this month’s giveaway! For everyone else, don’t fret… there will be another cookbook giveaway next month! Stay tuned! 

There are plenty of cookbooks that give you excellent recipes to follow, but more often than not many of these are just straight-forward, simplified instructions with little insight in to the how or the why. Enter Ideas in Food: Great Recipes and Why They Work, easily one of my favorite cookbooks thanks to some extremely smart writing by Aki Kamozawa and H. Alexander Talbot. 

Amazon.com blurb: Alex Talbot and Aki Kamozawa, husband-and-wife chefs and the forces behind the popular blog Ideas in Food, have made a living out of being inquisitive in the kitchen. Their book shares the knowledge they have gleaned from numerous cooking adventures, from why tapioca flour makes a silkier chocolate pudding than the traditional cornstarch or flour to how to cold smoke just about any ingredient you can think of to impart a new savory dimension to everyday dishes. Perfect for anyone who loves food, Ideas in Food is the ideal handbook for unleashing creativity, intensifying flavors, and pushing one’s cooking to new heights. 

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO ENTER?

NOTE: Entries are now closed for this giveaway.

For your chance to win, you can do any (or all!) of the following:

The more you do, the more chances you have to win! The giveaway will end at 8:00 pm EDT on Thursday, July 11th. The winner will be announced the following day.

Giveaway rules: Winner must be 18 years of age, and have a mailing address in the United States or Canada (sorry everyone else — it’s a postage thing). Once notified, the winner must reply within 12 hours, otherwise the runner-up will be notified. The winner will be announced here, and on Twitter. Make sure you follow @foodiejournal!

 

Cookbook Giveaway: The Art of Living According to Joe Beef (COMPLETED)

In the forward to The Art of Living According to Joe Beef: A Cookbook of Sorts, David Chang makes a bold statement: “My favorite restaurant in the world is Joe Beef.”

 Congratulations to Jesse on winning this month’s giveaway! Will see you all again in July. Stay tuned!

In the forward to The Art of Living According to Joe Beef: A Cookbook of Sorts, David Chang makes a bold statement: “My favorite restaurant in the world is Joe Beef.”

Favorite restaurants can obviously change from one day to the next, but no one will deny that Joe Beef continues to be one of the best restaurants in Montreal, and quite possibly even in the world. It only makes sense that the resulting cookbook also continues to be a favorite amongst chefs and home-cooks alike. I’m very please to present this month’s cookbook giveaway — The Art of Living According to Joe Beef: A Cookbook of Sorts

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO ENTER?  

NOTE: Entries are now closed for this giveaway.  

For your chance to win, you can do any (or all!) of the following:

The more you do, the more chances you have to win! The giveaway will end at 4:00 pm EDT on Thursday, June 20th. The winner will be announced the following day.

Giveaway rules: Winner must be 18 years of age, and have a mailing address in the United States or Canada (sorry everyone else — it’s a postage thing). Once notified, the winner must reply within 12 hours, otherwise the runner-up will be notified. The winner will be announced here, and on Twitter. Make sure you follow @foodiejournal!

 

Chatting with Daniel Humm of Eleven Madison Park about ‘I Love NY: Ingredients and Recipes’

The newest addition to my shelf is a cookbook called I Love New York: Ingredients and Recipes, written by Daniel Humm and Will Guidara of Eleven Madison Park in NYC. This well written cookbook provides an intimate look at those putting the work in to the ingredients which make their way in to big city kitchens every day.

My wife complains about two things when I cook. First, that I basically take over the kitchen, stealing all the kitchen towels, which drives her absolutely bonkers. Second, that I’m a slave to recipes.

She’s right.

I steal all the kitchen towels, usually with one tucked in to a belt loop, and others on the counter within my reach at all times. As for my recipe slavery, what can I say? I don’t feel comfortable enough in my own culinary skin to improvise just yet. So, I look to cookbooks, and those in the know to direct me along the way. 

The newest addition to my shelf (and to the shelf of one lucky person next month [stay tuned!]) is a cookbook called I Love New York: Ingredients and Recipes, written by Daniel Humm and Will Guidara of Eleven Madison Park in NYC. This well written cookbook provides an intimate look at those putting the work in to the ingredients which make their way in to big city kitchens every day. I checked in with Chef Humm about I Love New York. We touched on the inspiration for writing the cookbook, his favorite ingredients, and some of his favorite stories that he discovered in the process.

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Foodie Journal: Obviously fresh, local ingredients can serve as
inspiration for a dish. What is it about what you’ve been able to find in NY
that made you decide you wanted to release an entire cookbook based on local
New York product?
Daniel Humm: I’ve always
looked to seasonal ingredients and flavors as a source of inspiration for my
food, but when I took the time to explore where these ingredients were coming
from, I was amazed. In visiting farms and farmers all over New York, I found
that this region has some of the lushest agriculture I had ever seen. Not only
that, the people that were cultivating this land had such inspiring stories and
a dedication to this craft that is simply unmatched. Once I had seen just a few
of these farms and once I had met just a few of these farmers, I realized that
there was plenty more to explore. People so often think of New York as a
concrete jungle, a metropolis of skyscrapers and taxis and bright lights, but
New York is also home to ice cold waters brimming with spectacular seafood and
rolling hills of fruit trees and deep black soil ideal for growing root
vegetables. In writing this book, we wanted to show this New York.

FJ: Of all the ingredients you’ve discovered, are
there any that you enjoyed working with in particular? 
DH: I love the
ingredients that people may not be so used to working with, like sunchokes and
salsify. But I’m also very partial to carrots and oysters. It’s hard to pick
just one!

FJ: One of my favorite parts of the food world is
the stories and the history that come along with it. You obviously had a
glimpse in to that by reaching out to the farms in New York. Do you have a
favorite story that you happened to come across in the process?
DH: There are so
many stories that I gathered during this process, both ones about the history
of New York foods and agriculture and also more personal ones from the farmers
themselves. One of my favorites is about the history of oysters in New York. In
talking to Mike Osinski of the Widow’s Hole Oyster Company, I learned that
oysters have long been a significant part of New York’s history. At one point,
Ellis Island was even called Oyster Island. But overfishing and pollution
obliterated New York’s plentiful supply, so much so that when the famed Grand
Central Oyster Bar opened, they didn’t even serve New York oysters. Thanks to
people like Mike, there’s been a resurgence in oyster farming in New York, one
that we’ve come to embrace at Eleven Madison Park where every meal begins with
an oyster.

FJ: Eleven Madison Park is known to be true fine
dining destination — To get to that level clearly means that the chefs and
cooks know a lot of technique, and have had a lot of training. Can you talk a
little about how you managed to simplify the recipes so that they’d be
approachable for cooks of any skill level?
DH: For this
cookbook, we wanted to develop recipes that were specifically designed with the
home cook in mind, recipes that would require no special equipment or
hard-to-find ingredients, recipes that truly highlighted the seasons and the
bounty of the region.

FJ: If you had to pick one recipe from “I Love
NY: Ingredients and Recipes” to cook, what would it be?
DH: 
That’s a tough
one—I truly love all of them. But if I had to pick just one, it would be Milk
and Honey. It’s a flavor combination that is truly nostalgic for me and one
that we’ve worked with at both Eleven Madison Park and the NoMad. It’s truly a
wonderful, comforting dish.

Daniel Humm is executive chef of Eleven Madison Park, a three-Michelin star restaurant that was ranked 5th best restaurant in the world by The Diners Club® World’s 50 Best Restaurants Academy in 2013, located at 11 Madison Avenue in New York City. The cookbook I Love New York: Ingredients and Recipes is available for purchase on Amazon.

Cookbook Giveaway: Come In, We’re Closed by Jody Eddy and Christine Carroll (COMPLETED)

​Staff meal, also referred to as family meal, is essential to the running of a restaurant. It’s an opportunity to bring staff together for a brief moment relaxation and refueling in preparation for the service ahead. So in honor of those meals, I’m happy to be giving away copy of Come In, We’re Close: ​An Invitation to Staff Meals at the World’s Best Restaurants by Jody Eddy and Christine Carroll.

Thanks to everyone for participating! Congratulations to Brent in Massachusetts for winning this month’s giveaway! Enjoy it. To those that didn’t win this month, be sure to check in next month for the next giveaway!

Staff meal, also referred to as family meal, is essential to the running of a restaurant. It’s an opportunity to bring staff together for a brief moment relaxation and refueling in preparation for the service ahead. A food writing friend of mine, Drew Starr (who recently started writing for boston.eater.com), waxed nostalgic at the mention of this month’s cookbook giveaway: “That’s the one thing I miss most about restaurant life: staff meals.”

So in honor of those meals, I’m happy to be giving away copy of Come In, We’re Close: An Invitation to Staff Meals at the World’s Best Restaurants by Jody Eddy and Christine Carroll. It includes over 100 recipes from 25 of the best restaurants in the world (Au Pied de Cochon, Mugaritz, Craigie on Main, The Fat Duck, just to name a few), and a foreward by the amazing Ferran Adrià, Director of the elBulli Foundation.

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO ENTER?

NOTE: Entries are now closed for this giveaway. 

For your chance to win, you can do any (or all!) of the following:

The more you do, the more chances you have to win! The giveaway will end at 4:00 pm EDT on Thursday, May 9th. The winner will be announced the following day.

Giveaway rules: Winner must be 18 years of age, and have a mailing address in the United States (sorry Canada, and anyone else — it’s a postage thing). Once notified, the winner must reply within 24 hours, otherwise the runner-up will be notified. The winner will be announced here, and on Twitter. Make sure you follow @foodiejournal!

Cookbook Giveaway: Fire in My Belly by Kevin Gillespie (COMPLETED)

The last time I had a chance to speak with Chef Kevin Gillespie was June of 2012, just prior to the release of his first cookbook, “Fire in My Belly”. A short 10-months Chef Kevin is just a month away from opening his restaurant, Gunshow, in Atlanta, GA, and his cookbook is nominated for a James Beard Award in the Cookbook: American Cooking category. Not a bad year, I’d say! 

As always, thanks to everyone that entered! This month’s winner was Chris from Pennsylvania. Congratulations, Chris! Check back next month for my next giveaway.

The last time I had a chance to speak with Chef Kevin Gillespie was June of 2012, just prior to the release of his first cookbook, Fire in My Belly: Real Cooking. A short 10-months later and Chef Kevin is just a month away from opening his restaurant, Gunshow, in Atlanta, GA, and his cookbook is nominated for a James Beard Award in the Cookbook: American Cooking category. Not a bad year, I’d say! 

In honor of his nomination, this month’s cookbook giveaway is a free copy of Chef Kevin Gillespie’s Fire in My Belly: Real Cooking cookbook.

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO ENTER?

For your chance to win, you can do any (or all!) of the following on Twitter:

The more you do, the more chances you have to win! The giveaway will end at 10:00 pm EDT tonight, and I’ll announce the winner the following day.

Giveaway rules: Winner must be 18 years of age, and have a mailing address in the United States or Canada (apologies to any others). If you’re announced as the winner, you must reply within 24 hours. Otherwise, you forfeit, and the runner-up will be notified. The winner will be announced here, and on Twitter. Make sure you follow @foodiejournal!

Special thanks to Andrews McMeel Publishing.

Cookbook Giveaway: Try This at Home: Recipes from My Head to Your Plate by Richard Blais (COMPLETED)

This month brings you a very fresh addition to the cookbook world: Try This at Home: Recipes from My Head to Your Plate from Chef Richard Blais of The Spence in Atlanta.​

Congratulation to Drew! Your copy of Try This at Home should be on its way shortly. Thanks again to all who participated. To those that didn’t win this go-round, there is a chance every month, so stick around! 

Happy Cookbook Giveaway Day! 

This month brings you a very fresh addition to the cookbook world: Try This at Home: Recipes from My Head to Your Plate from Chef Richard Blais of The Spence in Atlanta.

Try This at Home is a pretty slick cookbook. The photography has a fun edge to it. You can try the standard recipes in the book, or take a shot at the many “1.5” or “2.0” versions, which add some playtime to your cooking! 

Here’s the Amazon spiel: 

A new way to make a dish is always on Richard Blais’s mind. He has a wildly creative approach—whether it’s adding coffee to his butter, which he serves with pancakes; incorporating the flavors of pastrami into mustard; making cannelloni out of squid; microwaving apple sauce for his pork chops; or cooking lamb shanks in root beer. In his debut cookbook, with equal degrees of enthusiasm and humor, he shares 125 delicious recipes that are full of surprise and flavor. Plus there are 25 variations to add more adventure to your cooking—such as making cheese foam for your burger or mashed sous vide peas to serve alongside your entrée. Dive into an exploration of your kitchen for both creativity and enjoyment. Now try this at home!

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO ENTER?

For your chance to win, you can do any (or all!) of the following on Twitter:

The more you do, the more chances you have to win! The giveaway will end at 10:00 pm EST tonight, and I’ll announce the winner the following day.

Giveaway rules: Winner must be 18 years of age, and have a mailing address in the United States or Canada (apologies to any others). If you’re announced as the winner, you must reply within 24 hours. Otherwise, you forfeit, and the runner-up will be notified. The winner will be announced here, and on Twitter. Make sure you follow @foodiejournal!

Try this at home: An interview with Chef Richard Blais of The Spence Atlanta

Richard Blais loves to play with food. His creativity has been on display for some time now, and with the release of his first cookbook, he brings that creativity to the home cook. The main point of the book: Play with your food. Especially since there’s no one around to tell you not to!

“But why not play with our food … and then eat it?”

It’s a question asked in the forward (by Tom Colicchio) to the new cookbook, Try This at Home: Recipes from My Head to Your Plate by Richard Blais. We are told constantly as children to not play with our food. Well, why the heck not? Having fun with your food is what makes it so much more than just fuel for your body. Granted, the fuel aspect is kind of important, but it’s also kind of boring! Taking the time to play a little with our food through different recipes and techniques might just make us enjoy it that much more.

Richard Blais loves to play with food. His creativity has been on display for some time now, and with the release of his first cookbook, he brings that creativity to the home cook. The main point of the book: Play with your food. Especially since there’s no one around to tell you not to!

I had the chance to speak with Richard recently. We touched on how he got his start in the business, what it was like working on his first cookbook, and a personal food memory.

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Foodie Journal: When was it that you really discovered that
you had a love for food?

Richard Blais: Well, I remember I played hooky as a kid
and I was in my kitchen making a bologna and cheese and potato chip sandwich. I
was just a kid obviously, and while I was making the sandwich I was talking out
loud to myself, sort of pretending like I was Julia Childs or Jeff Smith or
whoever it was that my mother and my grandmother would watch on TV at the time.
So I think that is the first moment I can remember being like, “Wow, I really
like doing it, I like talking about it while I’m making it,” even though at the
time it was just a sandwich and I’m sure it was awful.

FJ:  When was it that you first had exposure to
restaurants?

RB: I guess the term restaurant is up for
debate, but my first job was at McDonald’s. And I’m always pretty happy to talk
about that, because again it was when I was 14-years-old. I had a very
prestigious position at McDonald’s – I was the poissonier, which means Fish
Cook in French. Even for a fast-food restaurant, being the guy that handles the
one seafood item, it’s pretty prestigious. But, seriously though, humble roots.
I’m always proud to talk about the fact that I started at McDonald’s and
climbed up from there.

FJ: Was it the prestige of being poissonier that
led to you wanting to make a career out of cooking?

RB: [LAUGHS] No. I just always worked in
restaurants. I really didn’t know what I wanted to do with myself growing up. I
always played sports. I played baseball since I was 6-year-old, and I thought I
would end up being a professional baseball player! Really, though, I was always
cooking, and I slowly progressed from McDonald’s to little mom and pop stops,
then to Italian joints, then to a little French bistro. Even then I still
didn’t really know that that’s what I wanted to do. So I worked at a steak
house and there were a couple of other cooks at the time, and a lot of these
cooks had gone to the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) and I realized this
was more than just an hourly, grinding job. Those positions certainly exist in
our industry, but if you wanted it, there was actually an art to it and some
serious craft to it and that’s when I decided to go to culinary school.

FJ: How do you feel your experience at the CIA
helped you in your career?

RB: I’m a big fan of culinary school in
general, of course the one I went to I think I certainly is one of the best, if
not the best. I loved culinary school because their in-field training is. Some
might say that it isn’t a realistic experience. It’s not as fast-paced as a
real kitchen, and you’re not going to be one of ten students and four cooks
hovering over a pot talking about soup or discussing a carrot, but that’s why I
love culinary school! You could actually go to the library and find 50 people
that were actually studying the history of French cuisine or a carrot or a
certain type of braise. It was nice to have the time to really dig in to things
a bit more.

FJ: For you heading up a kitchen, how important is
it for you to be a teacher?

RB: I think it’s the most important thing. There
are a lot of life lessons that you can teach in the kitchen. I think it’s
really important because, especially in this day and age, there are a lot of
people who aren’t necessarily going to culinary school or starting off in this
career for the right reasons. They want to be rock star chefs, they want to be
on TV or they want to be mad scientists. Some part of this new generation has
lost track of the classics, and of just cooking great food. Being hospitable,
and knowing really why we cook, which is to make people happy. I think that can
get lost sometimes.

FJ: You’ve had the opportunity to work in some
high-caliber restaurants. The French Laundry, and El Bulli just to name a
couple. How did working in those kitchens impact you? Is it something that
every chef should try to do, if they can?

RB: Yeah, if they can. Not everyone can work
for nothing or barely anything; throw on a backpack, and head out to work at a
three- or four-star restaurant. But, if you can do it, everyone should. Although
the CIA taught me many things, I didn’t feel like I understood what it took to
be a chef until I left the French Laundry, and that was really just internship.
So, the highest level you can go for as long as you can endure it, I definitely
would recommend it. It’s not just the food. You learn about professionalism. Plus,
surrounding yourself with others that are aspiring to be the best pushes you to
do better. It’s really helpful.

FJ: Your first cookbook just dropped. What was it
like going through the entire process of actually putting together your first
cookbook?

RB: A lot more difficult than I though it would
be. Hats off to the people whose main focus is publishing cookbooks or anything
about food. It took two years all in, some of that was just business and delays
and getting the timing right, but it was a lot harder than I thought. It’s not just
about transcribing recipes. It’s aimed at the “Cooking Class 102” home cook, somebody
who does know a little bit about cooking. But, it’s not a coffee table sort of
cookbook.

For me it was challenging to come up with recipes,
or try to deliver recipes, that, you know, Mary in Kansas can pick up and cook.
It sounds weird, but up until the last two years, I’ve never cooked from a
cookbook myself. I mean, I look at the pictures. I look at ideas. I get the gist
of something, but I never really used a cookbook. I know many people do. So the
difficult challenge was making sure things weren’t too difficult, but also
making sure that the book wasn’t overly simple either. There’s an edge to the
book, with the photography, and the fact that we have a lot of add-ons that are,
“Hey, if you want to take it to the next step, try this.” So, it was a
challenge.

FJ: So the final question is pertaining to food
and memories. Do you have a favorite food memory that you can think of that you
would like to share?

RB: Sure. It’s an experience that I mention in
the book, actually. My 4-year-old, when she was 1-1/2, I cooked a poached egg
with asparagus and hollandaise, had woken up early in the morning and had
plated this thing carefully. She likes eggs. She likes asparagus. I thought it
was simple! She just hated this dish so much. Then the next day I was like,
“Why didn’t she like the dish? It had a lot of finesse.” As a parent, anytime your
kids don’t eat the food you give them, or don’t eat your food, especially, it
bothers you. So the next day I relaxed a little bit and I did the same
ingredients, but scrambled the eggs hard, threw the asparagus in the oven and
almost let them shrivel up and wrinkle, and made vinaigrette instead of
hollandaise. She loved it!

It was really an impactful moment for me as a chef
because I realized that beautiful food and delicious food aren’t necessarily
the same thing. And, I hate to say it, but that was the point where I matured
as a chef. It was only a couple years ago, but it was then that I realized,
“You know what? Who cares if the asparagus isn’t green?” Now you see
restaurants all over the country doing charred vegetable that are almost burnt.
Thinking about Mexican cuisine and the fact that a lot of their sauces, they’re
literally burnt. Scandinavian chef’s now are doing charred leaks, or ash of
this, but all of those things sort of came to me in just that one moment with
my little girl. So that was big moment for me.

Richard Blais helms The Spence, located at 75 Fifth St. NW in Atlanta, in partnership with the Concentrics Restaurants group.

Offal good: Checking in with Chef Chris Cosentino of Incanto in San Francisco

“Offal, huh? Must taste like it sounds.” Ba-dum-dum.

It’s a sentiment I’ve heard more than once, and quite possibly one I myself expressed multiple times many years back. Heart. Tongue. Brain. Kidney. The “nasty bits”, many wouldn’t consider sniffing at. How can it possibly be any good? I can tell you from personal experience, though, that when these cuts are handled by the hands of a capable chef, they can be good. “Offal” good.

One such chef is Chris Cosentino, of Incanto in San Francisco. Having built a brand around offal, Cosentino is part of a movement of chefs that see the importance (and common sense) of utilizing every part of an animal. Waste not, want not! I had the opportunity to check in with Chef Cosentino, touching on where his love of food came from, the importance of passing on cooking knowledge, and writing his first cookbook.

Chris Cosentino
Chris Cosentino

Foodie Journal: Did you always love to cook?
Chris Cosentino: Yes, I grew up around great cooks.  My great grandmother, Rosalie Cosentino, was from Naples, Italy and my grandmother, Helen Easton, was an amazing English cook.  Some of my most cherished childhood moments are with both of them in the kitchen, making great food memories and learning from them.

FJ: Where did you end up getting your start in the business?
CC: My true beginning in the food business was at a ripe age of 15 as a dishwasher at IHOP.  It amazed me to watch the 2 cooks make so much food with such perfect timing and execution.  Ever since that first job I have craved knowledge of food and been passionate about cooking.

FJ: It seems like offal has really become much more common place in restaurants these days. Why did you decide to gravitate towards offal, and nose to tail cooking in general?
CC: When I started cooking offal 10 years ago it wasn’t very common.  Now, it is great to see it featured on so many menus in the country.

FJ: Do you have a favorite piece of offal that you enjoy working with?
CC: Each cut of offal is so unique that I couldn’t pick just one.  It would be like picking your favorite child.

FJ: I saw a web short from Breville where you’re out on the town with Chef Jamie Bissonnette in Boston, and you both touch on the importance of teaching others to cook. Can you just speak a little about why teaching others to cook really is so important?
CC: Sharing with peers is extremely important because technique and product sharing can help change the way people work to improve the quality of food.  If we don’t share our knowledge of cooking, we don’t see progression for the next generation.  Like the many great chefs who came before us, it is our responsibility to make sure each generation is growing and making the food world better for everyone.

FJ: In line with teaching people, you just published your first cookbook last year. What was the experience of getting that out there like? Ready to get started on your next one?
CC: It was a huge challenge.  I was always a poor student so writing a book was a big personal achievement.  I was always told that you should never write like you speak when I was in school and now everyone tells me to write so they can hear my voice!  I learned so much from this first experience and I can’t wait to make my next cookbook even better.

FJ: The final question for you: Do you have a specific food memory from your life that you’d like to share?
CC: I feel so fortunate to have so many great taste memories in my life.  At the age of 12 years old I ate a raw clam on the half shell alongside my grandfather, Thurston Easton, for the first time.  I had never had an uncooked clam so when he busted open the clam, drizzled on some lemon, and told me to chew it, it was a total game changer.  It was crunchy with a huge explosion of brininess but it was also so delicate.  I was immediately hooked and ate a dozen.  To this day, I will always love them and think of my grandfather.

Chris Cosentino is chef/partner at Incanto, located at 1550 Church Street, in San Francisco. He released his first cookbook, “Beginnings: My Way To Start a Meal” in 2012.

Cookbook Giveaway: Chris Cosentino’s Beginnings: My Way To Start a Meal (COMPLETED)

Chris Cosentino’s Beginnings

Thanks to everyone that entered for a chance to win! Congratulations to Andrew (@AndyTheButcher_). Your free cookbook, courtesy of The Foodie Journal, should be on its way today. Enjoy!

It’s that time again, folks! I’m proud to be offering up a copy of Chris Cosentino’s cookbook, Beginnings: My Way To Start a Meal

Here’s the skinny on what to expect in this fantastic cookbook: “The first cookbook from innovative and highly regarded chef Chris Cosentino, Beginnings presents more than 60 recipes for Italian-style first courses. Organized by season, the book draws upon Chris’s years of experience cooking both at home and in restaurant kitchens. The seasonal, yet creative ingredient combinations found in each of the dishes exemplify the style of cooking Chris employs at his San Francisco restaurant, Incanto, and many of them make use of his love of Italian salumi from his artisan salumeria, Boccalone. Hand-rendered sketches of many of the dishes and personal stories throughout, combined with the simple and rustic, yet contemporary and inspiring recipes give you a rare glimpse into one of today’s most exciting culinary minds.”

One of my personal favorites – The instruction for making your plate look fancy. It’s shmootastic! :)

What do I need to do to enter?

For your chance to win, you can do any (or all!) of the following on Twitter:

The more you do, the more chances you have to win! The giveaway will end at 10:00 pm EST tonight, and I’ll announce the winner the following day.

Giveaway rules: Winner must be 18 years of age, and have a mailing address in the United States or Canada (apologies to any others). If you’re announced as the winner, you must reply within 24 hours. Otherwise, you forfeit, and the runner-up will be notified. The winner will be announced here, and on Twitter. Make sure you follow @foodiejournal!