Everyday Dorie: The Way I Cook
By Dorie Greenspan
(Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; $35)
Dorie Greenspan admits to burning down her parents’ kitchen at age 12, that she couldn’t cook when she got married, and that she was fired from a restaurant job making, of all things, cookies. Fourteen cookbooks and five James Beard awards later, Greenspan is one of the most unstoppable forces in the food world today. Reading about her foibles will give hope to anyone who struggles in the kitchen.
Packed with fun and foolproof recipes, the book covers the bases from starters to desserts. My favorite chapters are the final two: Basics and Transformers. Here, Greenspan offers simple recipes for necessities such as dressing, pesto, slow-roasted tomatoes, lemon curd, pie dough, and pickled onions, cucumbers, and strawberries. I love the French cheese puffs called gougères, so I had to try hers, which were extremely easy to make—and especially delicious thanks to the Dijon and walnuts in the dough. It’s such unexpected surprises that make me want to keep cooking from cover to cover.