|Penne with Garrotxa, Serrano Ham, and Sun-Dried Tomatoes|
But this book review actually falls into that "personal stuff" category, as the authors of "Melt: The Art of Macaroni and Cheese,"Stephanie Stiavetti and Garrett McCord, happen to be personal friends of mine. (Here we are with the fourth corner of our square, Casey Barber, author of "Classic Snacks Made From Scratch.") Not only do these three all have a special place in my heart since we met at Food Blog Camp, but macaroni and cheese also has a very special place in my heart. So, here goes with my first cookbook post!
|Photo: Matt Armendariz|
Besides the out-of-the-box interpretations of a classic comfort food, the depth of information about cheese and pasta and the resulting magic that happens when they're combined is astonishing. Every single recipe begins with a description of the cheese and the key ingredients in the dish. This is one element I hope for in every recipe I read, and is evidence of both authors' blogging backgrounds.
You'll find sidebars about raw milk cheese, terroir, crusts and much more. There's even a cheese quick reference guide in the back! If you never cook a single recipe from this book, you'll walk away from it knowing more than you ever imagined you'd know about cheese.
But what I like most about this book is the warm, conversational prose. I hear both of their voices variously as I read through the book. (You can experience a little bit of their personalities in this cookbook trailer.) Their explanations are authoritative yet friendly, high-brow yet humble. I keep paging through the book, randomly turning to pages, just to read the recipe introductions.
So free your fancy cheese from it's prison on that cheese plate next to the water crackers, pick up a copy of "Melt: The Art of Macaroni and Cheese," and call your friends for a dinner party. Just be prepared to have them invite themselves back over!
To win a set of Le Crueset cookware, check out this giveaway celebrating the release of "Melt"!