Ethan Stowell, chef and owner of, let’s see, Union, Tavolata, How To Cook A Wolf, and Anchovies & Olives has been working on a cookbook for a year and half. The book will be published Fall 2010 by 10 Speed Press, and right now they are doing the photo shoots.
Stowell says it’s not a fancy restaurant book. Yes, there is some restaurant style food, but it also has lots of simple food made with superior ingredients that require work to find. Example? His excellent crudos of raw fish come to mind, as do his pastas. Just where do I get amazing escolar to cure and eat? For us, the home cooks who will use the cookbook, it won’t be hard to make the recipe, but it will be challenging and fun to find the stellar ingredients that go in to the recipe. Maybe we’ll turn the town into a giant treasure hunt.
This cookbook idea is a newer way of looking at things, and one that, in the end, appeals to many of us. Complicated recipes thrill me but that emotion comes with the worry that all I will have made for dinner is a messy kitchen and something iffy on the plate. With Stowell’s cookbook focus the hunt for the ingredients/elements is the key, and once you snag them his easier recipes won’t keep them from tasting as they should. This simple Stowell recipe on starchefs.com shows why.
Lastly, I’d tell you the name of the book but it doesn’t have one yet. He said one idea was Anchovies & Olives, but of course he and his team decided against it, and instead used it to name the fourth restaurant. That makes me think there might be some recipes with his tasty anchovies and unusual olives in the cookbook. Who knows? We’ll find out next fall.