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Best Cookbooks of All-Time

This Cookbook Will Bring Out Your Competitive Side

Reprinted from La Terra Fortunata. Copyright © 2001 by Fred Plotkin. Published by Clarkson Potter/Publishers, a division of Random House LLC.

Getting a chef to pick a favorite cookbook is like asking a parent to choose her most-loved child. But F&W pressed great cooks around the country to reveal their all-time top picks.

The Chef: Lachlan Mackinnon-Patterson

The Book: La Terra Fortunata: The Splendid Food and Wine of Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Italy’s Great Undiscovered Region [http://www.amazon.com/La-Terra-Fortunata-Venezia-Giulia-Undiscovered/dp/076790611X] by Fred Plotkin, 2001

“At Frasca Food and Wine we love Fred Plotkin’s cookbook La Terra Fortunata,” Mackinnon-Patterson says. “It’s currently out of print, but it’s an important inspiration. We recently held a culinary competition with all of our chefs: Everyone had to choose a dish from that book, then make it in their own way with a touch of creativity or modernism. We created this elaborate scoring table, and judged all of the dishes on appearance and taste and plating and originality. The winners all got prizes.”

Related: 7 Great Books for Food Lovers
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