Cook the Book: 'Mario Batali Italian Grill'

Book CoverMemorial Day weekend is all about grilling. This Friday, all over America, home cooks will dig barbecue tongs, forks, and spatulas out of their kitchen drawers, and wheel dusty Webers out of their garages. Supermarkets will set up mountainous displays of charcoal, only to sell out in minutes, along with shrink-wrapped hot dogs, sacks of hamburger buns, and economy-sized bags of chips. Not to mention six-packs of beer.

Memorial Day food isn't fussy or fancy. (This isn't the time to break out your new Kugelhopf pan, or test a recipe for salmon mousse canapés.) Instead, when the flames fire up and the iron grate starts to sizzle, people want to heap their paper plates full of food with big, bold flavors. Who better to look to for menu suggestions than bad-boy celebrity chef Mario Batali?

In his new cookbook, Mario Batali Italian Grill, Batali offers up eighty recipes for appetizers, pizzas, fish and shellfish, poutry, meat, and vegetables, plus sixty full-color photographs. Italian grilling isn't about thick barbecue sauces and heavy basting; instead, the flavors are light, but they still pack a punch (think good olive oil, red wine, garlic, chili flakes, citrus, and fresh herbs).

Win Mario's Book or a Chance to Tailgate with Mario

If you'd like a chance to win to tailgate with Mario at the Texas Motor Speedway on November 2, visit this page and submit your grilling recipe and video demonstration of it. Grand prize winner will grill with Mario and grab two VIP tickets to the Dickies 500 race in Fort Worth.

In addition to that, you can enter to win one of five copies of Mario Batali Italian Grill from Serious Eats for your own backyard library. Just tell us here on this post what your favorite grilling condiment is and why.

Five (5) people will be chosen at random from among eligible comments below. Comments will close Monday, May 26 at noon ET. The standard Serious Eats contest rules apply.

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