Does the world really need another cookbook? We say yes. Here are a few titles by Vancouverites worth adding to your growing pile.
Cooking in Color
There’s no denying that people eat with their eyes. Cooking in Color: Vibrant, Delicious, Beautiful Food by Adrian Harris and Jeremy Inglett, the local duo otherwise known as the Food Gays, makes a solid case why.
Take the rainbow spring rolls stuffed with purple cabbage, red lettuce, carrots, daikon, cucumber, basil, mint, and more; chicken salad with strawberries, sunflower seeds, and cilantro; or blackberry, brie, and arugula crostini with honey and lavender: all visually captivating, all tantalizing on the tongue.
Cooking in Color is filled with other enticing yet nonintimidating recipes and has a friendly, unpretentious tone. The two, who dedicate the book to their moms, also share a few tips related to photography and styling, a boon to anyone who loves posting food pics on Instagram but needs a little guidance and encouragement.
We know that Vancouver is a food city, and all the local foodies can get their fix with Vancouver Eats: Signature Recipes From the City’s Best Restaurants. Here are 100 recipes from 45 eateries, ranging from Ancora Waterfront Dining and Patio and AnnaLena to Wildebeest and the Wildflower. (Okay, that last one is in Whistler, based out of the Fairmont Chateau Whistler, and chef Isabel Chung lives in Pemberton, but no matter. There are other Whistler entries, including Bearfoot Bistro; Vancouverites are willing to drive the Sea to Sky Highway just for the food.)
Joanne Sasvari’s book is a reminder of the local dining scene’s delicious diversity and remarkable culinary talent. Vikram Vij, David Hawksworth, Alex Chen, Angus An, Thomas Haas, and many other masters are here, each photographed beautifully by Kevin Clark.
If you’ve ever ordered the whole fried fish with tosa joyu dipping sauce at Kissa Tanto (and if not, why not?) or visited Minami specifically for aburi sushi bites or found yourself biting into a vegan doughnut with chocolate ganache and lemon sprinkles at Cartems Donuterie and wondered ‘How do they do it?’, now’s your chance to find out—and to make your favourite cheffy dishes at home.
Honey Salt Food and Drink
Elizabeth Blau and Kim Canteenwalla are the couple behind Honey Salt, a restaurant that started in Las Vegas and has a second location at Parq Vancouver. Calling Vancouver their second home, the two have built their careers around food, dining, and hospitality: she’s a James Beard nominee, member of the James Beard Foundation, and trustee for the Culinary Institute of America; he’s well-travelled chef who participated four times in the Best Hotel Chefs in America series at the James Beard House and won a round of Food Network’s Iron Chef America with Kerry Simon.
Blau and Canteenwalla have opened hundreds of restaurants around the world with a business partner, but Honey Salt was the first venture to call their own. There, they serve the kind of food they eat at home with family and friends, dishes they remember from their childhoods and that they’ve discovered while travelling the globe, from Cape Cod to Sicily. They share their favourites in Honey Salt Food and Drink: A Culinary Scrapbook.
There are kid-friendly recipes in a section contributed by the pair’s son, Cole (buttermilk-fried chicken fingers and Grandma Mimi’s easy crepes among them). Then there are gems like burrata-and-heirloom-tomato salad with chocolate (which heightens all the flavours), fettuccine and truffle cream sauce, Okanagan apple pie, duck confit poutine, and vegetable curry, which Canteenwalla learned to make from his father.
A long-time scrapbooker, Blau gives the book a warm, personal feel with vacation photos, notes, and highlights of various family adventures jotted down in point form on index cards; through the restaurateurs’ mementos and cooking tips, we get to know them inside and outside of the kitchen.