29 October 2016

Weekend Cooking: Appetites Cookbook by Anthony Bourdain

Appetites Cookbook by Anthony BourdainWhen I reviewed Anthony Bourdain's second memoir, Medium Raw, I noted that the well-known chef seemed have mellowed a bit over the years, though he still had his cutting wit.

In Appetites Cookbook, Bourdain shows yet another side of his personality and his life. He presents a well-calculated (and still guarded) glimpse at his home life, his thoughts on being a later-in-life dad, and--more important perhaps--what he cooks in his home kitchen.

As he says in the introduction to the book, the vast majority of the recipes in this collection are down-to-earth, everyday fare. The man shown in Appetites is not the Anthony Bourdain of restaurant fame or of dare-to-eat-anything TV.

Of course, Bourdain's family recipes aren't quite what my family recipes are, and that's because he has traveled the world, is professionally trained and skilled, and lives in a city where all things culinary can be bought. So while I can make his roast leg of lamb and meatloaf as instructed, I'll have to substitute something like Rock Cornish game hens (?) for his roast quail with polenta.

Appetites Cookbook by Anthony BourdainThe recipes run the full scope from omelets, chicken salad, and black bean soup to Kuching-style laksa (spicy shrimp and noodles) and from lobster rolls and simple pastas to mutant quesadillas (with sausages and duck). There is a whole chapter devoted to American Thanksgiving, and the short dessert chapter made me laugh (I won't spoil things by telling you why).

Besides the recipes, I love the fun fonts and playful photographs that make Appetites Cookbook a pleasure to read and look through. Plus Bourdain puts his writing skills to good use, providing an entertaining introduction to the book and great stories to go with the recipes. You'll find out such things as his thoughts on the club sandwich and his strong feelings about hamburger buns. Warning: he uses adult language (so do I). I liked getting to know this other side of Anthony Bourdain, and I look forward to serving some of his family's favorite meals in my own kitchen.

Recommendation: Anthony Bourdain's Appetites Cookbook is not just for Bourdain fans, though it's a must-read for them. The recipe collection is for anyone who likes to cook for friends and family. I love the warmth and care that many of the recipes bring with them: whether a simple bodega sandwich or a fancier veal chop with wild mushrooms. From the heart-felt side of bad-boy Bourdain to perfectly cooked bacon and eggs, there's a lot to love in Appetites Cookbook.

Note: the scans and recipe are used in the context of this review; all rights remain with the original copyright holder: Anthony Bourdain.

The Grill Bitch's Bar Nuts
Appetites Cookbook by Anthony BourdainMakes 8 cups

  • 4 large egg whites
  • 5 pounds of mixed nuts
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1½ tablespoons ground cayenne pepper
  • 1½ tablespoons salt
Preheat the oven to 325F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone mats.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk the egg whites until they are foamy and nearly stiff.

In another mixing bowl, combine the nuts, sugars, cinnamon, cayenne, and salt and toss to coat. Fold in the egg whites, tossing gently to make sure that all the nuts have been coated in egg white.

Divide the mixture evenly between the two prepared sheet pans. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes, rotating the pans and stirring the nuts at the 15-minute mark. The nuts should be dry and crisp after 30 minutes.

Remove from the oven and let cool before serving.

Published by Ecco Books, 2016
ISBN-13: 9780062409959
Source: review (see review policy)
Copyright © cbl for Beth Fish Reads, all rights reserved (see review policy)

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(Diane) bookchickdi 10/29/16, 7:44 AM  

I saw him being interviewed by Willie Geist and he is very entertaining in his honesty. I happen to agree with him on the club sandwich too.

Mae Travels 10/29/16, 8:06 AM  

5 pounds of nuts must make a very large batch -- amazing for a family cookbook! I hope you post a report about the results you obtain if you actually do cook some of the other dishes.

best... mae at maefood.blogspot.com

Tina 10/29/16, 8:47 AM  

He was in Tallahassee a few years back and I didn't know it in time, couldn't get tickets. I would love to see him. I have one of his cookbooks and it's fun to go through, I'd like to look at this one too.

bermudaonion 10/29/16, 8:54 AM  

I love a cookbook that is memoirish. This sounds terrific!

jama 10/29/16, 9:02 AM  

He's always interesting, no matter what he does. Good to know there's a non-exotic, family-oriented side of him too. Will have to check this book out. Thanks for the review!

Katherine P 10/29/16, 10:12 AM  

I listened to his book Medium Raw and really enjoyed it. His honesty and perspective I found really interesting. I've been curious about this cookbook and it sounds great. I'm really curious about the dessert chapter because I know his attitude on them!

Claudia 10/29/16, 11:27 AM  

Oh if only I had room for one more cookbook. But, then somehow, we always make room for the ones we want. This does sound moreish.

Nan 10/29/16, 12:43 PM  

Probably too meaty for a vegetarian! Funny, I've never had any interest in him, or really any celebrity chefs except for Emeril ages ago.

Deb in Hawaii 10/29/16, 1:18 PM  

I really enjoy Anthony Bourdain's books and his wit and I love that the recipes have stories--one of the things I look for in cookbooks. I love to know where the recipes came from and other personalizing details about them. This one sounds like fun! ;-)

Melynda@Scratch Made Food! 10/29/16, 1:25 PM  

He always seems to live "large" with a side order of honesty! Sounds enjoyable.

Margot 10/29/16, 2:22 PM  

I'm so glad to hear about this new Bourdain book. Ir looks like a good read with the added bonus of recipes. I'm off to find it.

rhapsodyinbooks 10/30/16, 6:02 AM  

The Bar Nuts sounds great! (and gee, wonder what it would be like to be married to him, HA HA)

Shaheen 10/30/16, 8:42 AM  

I find Anthony very interesting, though I have to admit I have never bought any of his books but do enjoy listening to him. Those nuts look very moreish. Thank you for hosting, am joining in again with a seasonal recipe.

Karen 10/30/16, 8:51 AM  

I'm of two minds with Bourdain—I think he's incredibly smart and talented, of course, but I got tired of his "I'm such an asshole—wait I'll prove it!" style after a while. Now that he's a parent and mellowed out some, he seems to be embodying some of the stuff he used to complain about. Ah well, I guess that's human nature! :) Meanwhile, I used to make nuts similar to these years ago but had kind of forgotten about them, so thanks for the reminder!

Molly 10/30/16, 8:56 AM  

The nut recipe sounds delicious - and a perfect holiday recipe to serve at home or give as gifts.

Debbie 10/30/16, 5:24 PM  

I love Anthony Bourdain! He's so....bad. As in bad boyish. But fun to read and listen too.

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