'cook the book' on Serious Eats

Calvados Omelette From 'Prune'

Like many of Gabrielle Hamilton's desserts in her new cookbook, Prune, the Calvados Omelette is both simple and strange, at least to our American palettes—sweet, enriched egg flambeed with apple brandy. We are not used to having our eggs for dessert, at least not served to us so unabashedly, instead of under the guise of custard or crepe or soufflé. And though the eggs here are mixed with a substantial amount of cream and a bit of flour, the end result is in fact just a plateful of sweet (buttery, boozy) eggs. But it comes off as elegant, urbane, and perfectly delicious. More

Grilled Hamburger With Cheddar Cheese on Toasted English Muffin With Parsley-Shallot Butter From 'Prune'

Gabrielle Hamilton's burger from her new cookbook, Prune, is obscenely good and feels quite fancy, despite being so simple. The name really discloses the whole recipe: chubby beef and lamb patties are topped with white cheddar and sandwiched in a Thomas's English muffin, dressed only with the parsley-and-shallot compound butter. The cheese oozes down the sides of the salty, fatty burger, and the bright and potent butter, slathered on the top and bottom of the English muffin, seeps into every 'nook and cranny' of the burger and bun. More

Monte Cristo From 'Prune'

Prune's brunch is known as being one of the best in the city, and is worth the two hour wait, even on a chilly, hungover morning. One of the big draws is the Monte Cristo, an outrageous, deep-fried, French-toast/ ham-and-cheese hybrid. Gabrielle Hamilton shares the recipe in her new cookbook, Prune. She builds the triple-decker sandwich on white bread with loads of butter, French ham, Swiss Cheese, and roasted turkey. This gets soaked briefly in eggs and milk and griddled in clarified butter. And THEN deep-fried. More

Branzino Al Cartoccio From 'Downtown Italian'

Gabriel Thompson's branzino from his new cookbook, Downtown Italian, written with Katherine Thompson and Joe Campanale, is as simple as it is sophisticated, and delivers his trademark clean, bold, bright flavor. Branzino fillets are laid over what is essentially a fregola (tiny, toasted balls of semolina pasta) and tomato salad, doused with olive oil, wrapped in parchment packets, and baked. More

Helga's Meatballs and Gravy With Carrot-Apple Mashed Potatoes From 'Marcus Off Duty'

There's a reason why these meatballs have a permanent place on the menu at Marcus Samuelsson's Harlem hotspot, Red Rooster, and why they get mentioned in nearly every review of the place: his grandmother was on to something. In an act of kindness, he shares the recipe—her recipe—in his new cookbook, Marcus Off Duty, and it's a winner. More

Salmon in a Sea of Coconut From 'Marcus Off Duty'

Marcus Samuelsson is downright obliged to love salmon, having grown up on the coast of Sweden. And he has a thing for the flavors of Southeast Asia, choosing the foods of that region to be his desert-island pick, so to speak. In this dish from his new cookbook. Marcus Off Duty, he combines both cuisines into one weird and weirdly wonderful bowl. More

Win a Copy of 'Marcus Off Duty'

When you get to peek inside Marcus Samuelsson's home kitchen to see what he cooks for himself and his family and friends, you'd be well-advised to take notes. Scratch that—he's taken notes for you. His hot-off-the-press cookbook, Marcus Off Duty: The Recipes I Cook at Home, is a compilation of recipes from Samuelsson's personal collection, and it's an eclectic, bordering on wacky, mix. More

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