Maman: The Cookbook; All-Day Recipes To Warm Your Heart

Clarkson Potter. Sept. 2021. 256p. ISBN 9780593138953. $30. COOKING
If visiting a French café is impossible, readers might simulate the experience at home with this cookbook by the couple behind Maman, a small chain of cafés in New York and Canada. Marshall and Sormonte are not professional chefs, but both grew up in close-knit, food-loving families (in Toronto, Canada, and Montpellier, France, respectively); they offer family-friendly food in their welcoming, French-inspired cafés (named after the French word for “mother”). Here they share 100 cherished recipes. The cookbook has a warm tone that plays up the idea of family; Marshall and Sormonte encourage readers to turn the book into a family heirloom by jotting their own notes on the recipes (throughout, there are unobtrusive blank lines to write on). The recipes for brunch fare, sandwiches, and sweets, with an extensive beverage section, are doable for beginners but interesting enough for experienced home chefs who want to experiment with French flavors or put a spin on French standards with ingredients like maple syrup or tomatillos. The book includes brief guidance on equipment, practical tips for reheating and freezing, and eye-catching photos of scrumptious food.
VERDICT Not just for Maman’s walk-in or online customers, this cookbook is recommended for those who want to offer informal, stylish, satisfying food to family and friends; it may well delight Francophiles.
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