COOKING & FOOD

Chi Spacca: A New Approach to American Cooking

Knopf. Apr. 2020. 384p. ISBN 9780525654650. $35. COOKING
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Chef and James Beard Award–winner Silverton teams up with Chi Spacca executive chef Ryan DeNicola, and award-winning journalist and cookbook author Carolynn Carreño, to present a selection of recipes served at Silverton’s L.A.-based Chi Spacca. Inspired by how an Italian butcher might cook and eat, the restaurant and book place an emphasis on meats, fish, and seasonal vegetables. The book opens with a guide to the Spacca Pantry (spices, oils, blends, and rubs), and features sections on Spuntini (snacks or finger foods, including pickles), Insalate (salads), Carne (meat: beef and veal; pork; lamb; duck, rabbit, and chicken), Pesce (fish), Contorni, (sides), and Dolci (desserts), as well as tutorials on grilling at home, making aioli by hand, and selecting meats, and a source list for equipment, mail-order meats, and spices. Included are instructions for plating and pairing though some seasonal/regional ingredients may be hard to find.
VERDICT These are not recipes that you can throw together on a weeknight; even the salads take some planning. A resource for experienced cooks and those looking for a challenge.

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