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Treasured

Alex Guarnaschelli's Talisman Offers Culinary Courage

Alex Guarnaschelli's Prized Cookbook

Alex Guarnaschelli's Prized Cookbook © Melanie Dunea/ CPi/ My Last Supper

In this series, photographer Melanie Dunea of My Last Supper takes a peek into the minds of working chefs and gets them to reveal their most prized possessions.

"I know that some people use lavender, incense and cake as sedatives, but for me a ‘nose bath’ in an old book just does something," says chef Alex Guarnaschelli. She brings her mother's copy of The Gourmet Cooking School Cookbook along for food TV competitions to hold, and well, to smell. The tome, first published in 1988, is still a fantastic resource for self-taught cooks. "This book offers courage and structure more than anything else. Dione Lucas has been obscured by larger-than-life personalities like Julia Child, but she had it going on. She is like the horse that came in second place, whose name we can’t remember. It takes more than just one horse to make a race.” Read more and see the rest of Guarnaschelli's most-prized belongings in Treasured: Alex Guarnaschelli's Favorite Things

Related: Christina Tosi's Precious Scarves
Andrew Carmellini's Pasta Tools
Jonathan Waxman's Knives

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