From The Phoenicia Diner Cookbook to Cool Beans, here’s what we’ll be reading. 

By Bridget Hallinan
Updated April 01, 2020
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Every year, in addition to getting excited about seasonal ingredients and recipes, we look forward to spring because of the promise of new cookbooks. More baking books filled with cookies to make on weekends; more dishes from restaurants we love, like Phoenicia Diner in Phoenicia, New York. This year, there are plenty to get excited about—so many, it was hard to pick—including Dinner in French from Melissa Clark, two dessert cookbooks from the late legendary pastry chef and author Maida Heatter, and Blaine Wetzel's recipes from Lummi Island, too. We also included, although technically not from spring, a few bonus February cookbooks that are already out, which you should definitely keep on your radar. Check out the full spread below, organized by release date.

Cool Beans: The Ultimate Guide to Cooking with the World's Most Versatile Plant-Based Protein, with 125 Recipes (February 4) 

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Joe Yonan

Publisher: Ten Speed Press

Order here: $28 (was $30) at barnesandnoble.com

Beans are having a moment, and in Cool Beans, Joe Yonan provides 125 recipes for them, drawing from the Middle East, the Mediterranean, South America, and the American South, per the book’s description. Think Smoky Black Bean and Plantain Chili, Harissa-Roasted Carrot and White Bean Dip, Crunchy Spiced Chickpeas, and more. (You can also get bean-cooking tips from an interview he did with us earlier this year.)

Vegetable Kingdom: The Abundant World of Vegan Recipes (February 11)

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Bryant Terry

Publisher: Ten Speed Press

Order here: $27 (was $30) at barnesandnoble.com

We included Vegetable Kingdom, by food justice activist Bryant Terry, in our list of "Vegetarian Cookbooks to Live By in 2020," and now, it’s out for you to enjoy. It covers everything from grains and legumes to vegetables, of course—recipes included are Millet Roux Mushroom Gumbo, Barbecued Carrots with Slow-Cooked White Beans, and more.

Start Simple: Eleven Everyday Ingredients for Countless Weeknight Meals (February 18)

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Lukas Volger

Publisher: Harper Wave

Order here: $29 (was $32.50) at barnesandnoble.com

This vegetarian cookbook hones in on 11 key ingredients, which Lukas Volger feels can be used as building blocks for meals: sweet potatoes, tortillas, eggs, cabbage, hearty greens, beans, winter squash, mushrooms, tofu, summer squash, and cauliflower. From there, once the foundation is built, readers can riff and experiment as they please.

Meals, Music, and Muses: Recipes from My African American Kitchen (February 25)

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Alexander Smalls with Veronica Chambers

Publisher: Flatiron Books

Order here: $24.50 (was $35) at barnesandnoble.com

After winning a James Beard Award last year for the book he co-authored with JJ Johnson, Between Harlem and Heaven, Alexander Smalls is back with Meals, Music, and Muses, which combines his love for food and music. Each chapter of the book, which is filled with "classic Southern recipes and twists on old favorites," is named for a type of music—dishes include Hoppin’ John Cakes with Sweet Pepper Remoulade and Roast Quail in Bourbon Cream Sauce.

The Irish Cookbook (February 26)

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): JP McMahon

Publisher: Phaidon Press

Order here: $50 at barnesandnoble.com

In a previous interview with Food & Wine, chef JP McMahon walked us through how he sourced his book on Irish cuisine, from looking through archives and interviewing family members to collecting a mix of classic and esoteric recipes. The spread includes Seafood-and-Seaweed Chowder, which you can find on our website (seaweed is his favorite unsung ingredient), and his own “wild food” creations as well.

“Irish food is a melting pot of so many different influences,” he said.

The Phoenicia Diner Cookbook: Dishes and Dispatches from the Catskill Mountains (March 3) 

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Mike Cioffi, Chris Bradley, Sara B. Franklin 

Publisher: Clarkson Potter

Order here: $32.50 at barnesandnoble.com

If you have friends that frequent the Catskills, chances are, you’ve seen them post pictures from Phoenicia Diner—and now, you can get in on the magic too. The Phoenicia Diner Cookbook includes 85 recipes that span breakfast (Country-Fried Steak and Eggs, Breakfast Tacos with Chorizo and Salsa Verde) to hearty mains like Baked Polenta with Kale and Pumpkin, and Esopus Trout and Chips. Beyond the comfort food, you’ll also find short essays strewn throughout the pages, touching on the borscht belt, skiing, the roots of folk music, and more.

Open Kitchen: Inspired Food for Casual Gatherings (March 3) 

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Susan Spungen

Publisher: Avery

Order here: $31.50 (was $35) at barnesandnoble.com

Susan Spungen’s latest cookbook is all about, as the title suggests, the concept of an open kitchen—“a place to welcome company, to enjoy togetherness and the making of a meal.” The professional recipe developer shares dishes ranging from Burrata with Pickled Cherries to Kabocha Candy with Yogurt and Toasted Pepitas. We also have a few of the recipes on our website, including Cheesy Baked Pasta with Radicchio and Rosy Harissa Chicken, which you can try while you wait for the book to arrive.

Dinner in French: My Recipes by Way of France: A Cookbook (March 10)

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Melissa Clark

Publisher: Clarkson Potter

Order here: $34 at barnesandnoble.com

Make sure you save space for Melissa Clark’s latest cookbook. Clark spent summer vacations in France, and Dinner in French is her love letter to French classics, updated “to reflect how we cook, shop, and eat today.” Expect Ratatouille Sheet-Pan Chicken, Poule au Pot Pie, and Deviled Eggs with Crème Fraîche and Roquefort—plus a tarte tartin, naturally.

The Outdoor Kitchen: Live-Fire Cooking from the Grill (March 24)

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Eric Werner with Nils Bernstein

Publisher: Ten Speed Press

Pre-order here: $35 at barnesandnoble.com

Hartwood chef Eric Werner's The Outdoor Kitchen, as you can imagine, is all about cooking outdoors. He guides readers through everything from setting up their own outdoor grill—or, modifications for store-bought grills—to techniques, like perfecting sears. Recipes include Rib Eye for One with Onion Jam and Burnt Strawberry Ice Cream.

Ana Ros: Sun and Rain (March 25)

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Ana Roš, Andrea Petrini (contributor), Kaja Sajovic (contributor)

Publisher: Phaidon Press

Pre-order here: $56 (was $60) at barnesandnoble.com

Sun and Rain is the first book from Ana Roš, the Slovenian chef behind Hiša Franko. The restaurant is located in the country’s Soča Valley and has been recognized by the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list; Roš also won Best Female Chef from the same organization in 2017, and was featured in an episode of Chef’s Table. She touches on that experience in one part of the book, and through essays and recollections, also explores how the landscape has inspired her, different seasonal ingredients, and her life story as well. It’s not strictly just a cookbook, but there are plenty of recipes tucked in at the end.

Chocolate Is Forever: Classic Cakes, Cookies, Pastries, Pies, Puddings, Candies, Confections, and More (April 7)

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Maida Heatter

Publisher: Voracious

Pre-order here: $24 (was $28) at barnesandnoble.com

The culinary world lost a legend last year in Maida Heatter, pastry chef and author of many, many beloved cookbooks. However, fans still have two new cookbooks from her to cherish this spring. The first is Chocolate is Forever, which, naturally, is dedicated to all things chocolate. Heatter was famously passionate about chocolate, and in Chocolate is Forever, you’ll find some of her best recipes, from “The World's Best Hot Fudge Sauce” to cookies and pies.

Cookies Are Magic: Classic Cookies, Brownies, Bars, and More (April 7) 

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Maida Heatter

Publisher: Voracious

Pre-order here: $28 at barnesandnoble.com

Heatter’s other cookbook, Cookies Are Magic, will give you plenty of new material for your weekend baking projects. Think sugar cookies, “cookie kisses,” tart lemon bars, and more—according to the description, Maida felt that cookies are the “key to happiness,” and she always had some on hand.

My Korea: Traditional Flavors, Modern Recipes (April 7) 

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Hooni Kim with Aki Kamozawa

Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.

Pre-order here: $40 at barnesandnoble.com

Michelin-starred chef Hooni Kim, behind Danji and Hanjan in New York, “introduces home cooks to the Korean culinary trinity” in My Korea—doenjang, ganjang, and gochujang. There are 90 recipes to explore, from Mul Naengmyeon (Buckwheat Noodles in Chilled Broth) to Haemul Sundubu Jjigae (Spicy Soft Tofu Stew with Seafood), with some, such as fried chicken wings, meant to pair specifically with soju or makgeolli, an unfiltered rice beer. Notes on techniques and sourcing are included as well.

Lummi: Island Cooking (April 7) 

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Blaine Wetzel

Publisher: Prestel Publishing

Pre-order here: $35 (was $50) at barnesandnoble.com

The Food & Wine Best New Chef, known for his hyperlocal cooking on Lummi Island in Washington state (at the Willows Inn restaurant), shares his recipes in Lummi: Island Cooking. The gorgeous book, which includes everything from Blackberry Stew to Sea Urchin with Rutabaga and Chanterelle, loosely follows the format of the menu at the restaurant, organized into sections by theme. In Spring Vegetables, you’ll see Wild Beach Pea Tips and Lovage Stems and Leek gratin; in Smokehouse & Grill, Cured Rockfish with Grilled Kelp and Smoked Sockeye Salmon. There are fun drinks tucked in the back, too.

Magnolia Table, Volume 2: A Collection of Recipes for Gathering (April 7) 

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Joanna Gaines

Publisher: William Morrow Cookbooks

Pre-order here: $24.50 (was $35) at barnesandnoble.com

Joanna Gaines’ follow-up cookbook sees her “push herself beyond her comfort zone,” according to the description, with 145 new recipes. They're culled from the restaurant of the same name she runs with her husband Chip, family meals, and more— dishes span from breakfast and dinner to breads, soups, and sides.

Dimes Times: Emotional Eating (April 14)

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Text by Alissa Wagner and Toniann Fernandez

Publisher: Karma Books, New York

Pre-order here: $39 (was $40) at barnesandnoble.com

Dimes, an all-day restaurant in Chinatown, is known for its fun, healthy menu, and you’ll definitely find according dishes in the Dimes cookbook—Kale-Almond Pesto, Orange Date Muesli, Winter Vegetable and White Bean Casserole. However, instead of being organized by type of meal, e.g. breakfast or dinner, Dimes is organized by specific times of the day, and emotions associated with them. 8:00 a.m. is “Determined,” and includes the aforementioned muesli and a “Love Toast” with tahini, berries, mint, and honey; 10:33 a.m. is “Emo,” and pivots to Matcha Buttermilk Pancakes and Breakfast Tacos. Then comes “Sensitive” at noon, “Aspirational” at 3:00 pm, “Curious” at 4:00 pm, “Four Twenty” at 4:20 pm, “Homesick” at 6:00 p.m, “Honeymoon” at 8:00 p.m., “Commiserate” at 10:00 p.m, and finally, “Afterhours” at 11:00 p.m.

Everyone Can Bake: Simple Recipes to Master and Mix (April 14)

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Dominique Ansel 

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Pre-order here: $26 (was $37.50) at barnesandnoble.com

While pastry chef Dominique Ansel is known for his elaborate desserts, in Everyone Can Bake, he turns to more basic recipes so readers can “master the building-blocks.” Recipes include Rosemary-Infused Chocolate Brownies and Chocolate Cherry Cake—there are also instructions for re-purposing key items like vanilla tart shell, which can be used for everything from cookies to an ice cream topping.

Friuli Food and Wine: Frasca Cooking from Northern Italy's Mountains, Vineyards, and Seaside (April 21) 

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Bobby Stuckey, Lachlan Mackinnon-Patterson, Meredith Erickson 

Publisher: Ten Speed Press

Pre-order here: $50 at barnesandnoble.com

If you’re a fan of Boulder, Colorado’s Frasca Food & Wine, you’ll love Friuli Food and Wine—Friuli-Venezia Giulia, a region in northeast Italy, is what inspires the menu. Chef Lachlan Mackinnon-Patterson (another Food & Wine Best New Chef) and sommelier Bobby Stuckey filled the pages with 80 different recipes and wine pairings, including Squash Gnocchi with Smoked Ricotta Sauce and Whole Branzino in a Salt Crust. Dishes are organized by Land, Sea, and Mountains, and there are also profiles of local winemakers and wines included, too.

Mosquito Supper Club: Cajun Recipes from a Disappearing Bayou (April 21)

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Melissa M. Martin 

Publisher: Artisan

Pre-order here: $35 at barnesandnoble.com

Chef Melissa Martin’s debut cookbook is named after her restaurant in New Orleans, and shares traditional Cajun recipes she grew up eating. Chapters are organized by ingredients, from oysters to sugarcane, and each are accompanied with an essay. The book is listed as a #1 new release on Amazon, and has accolades from Nina Compton, Kelly Fields, and Jessica B. Harris, and more.

Trejo's Tacos: Recipes and Stories from L.A (April 21)

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Danny Trejo with Hugh Garvey

Publisher: Clarkson Potter

Pre-order here: $26 at barnesandnoble.com

We talked to Danny Trejo about his “big, beautiful Mexican restaurant empire” last year, including Trejo’s Tacos, Trejo’s Cantina, and Trejo’s Coffee & Donuts. And now, you can get those recipes at home, from Vegan Cauliflower Tacos to Cinnamon-Sugar Lowrider Doughnuts. 

Falastin: A Cookbook (April 28) 

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Sami Tamimi, Tara Wigley 

Publisher: Ten Speed Press

Pre-order here: $31.50 (was $35) at barnesandnoble.com

Falastin, by Sami Tamimi (executive chef of Ottolenghi restaurants) and Tara Wrigley, is dedicated to Palestinian cuisine, chronicling its traditions and evolution. It’s Tamimi’s first solo book, and in it, he includes the story of how he left home at 17 to cook in West Jerusalem, where he first met and worked with Yotam Ottolenghi. You’ll find 120 recipes inside, from Labneh Cheesecake with Roasted Apricots, Honey, and Cardamom to Hassan’s Easy Eggs with Za’atar and Lemon. 

Chi Spacca: A New Approach to American Cooking (April 28)

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Nancy Silverton, Ryan DeNicola, Carolynn Carreno 

Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group

Pre-order here: $35 at barnesandnoble.com

This season, you’ll have another Nancy Silverton (F&W BNC 1990) cookbook to add to your reading list—and this time, it’s meat-centric, based off her Los Angeles restaurant Chi Spacca. The book, of the same name, “shares the secrets of cooking like an Italian butcher with recipes for meats, fish, and vegetables that capture the spirit of Italy.” You’ll find recipes including Coffee-Rubbed Tri-Tip, Fried Whole Branzino with Pickled Peppers and Charred Scallions, and Moroccan Braised Lamb Shanks—and yes, vegetables, like Charred Sugar Snap Peas with Yogurt, Guanciale, and Lemon Zest.

Koji Alchemy: Rediscovering the Magic of Mold-Based Fermentation (May 4) 

Courtesy of Amazon

Author(s): Rich Shih and Jeremy Umansky 

Publisher: Chelsea Green Publishing

Pre-order here: $31 (was $35) at barnesandnoble.com

In Koji Alchemy, chefs Jeremy Umansky and Rich Shih provide a guide for using koji—a microbe that’s used to flavor soy sauce, mirin, and more—from growing it to using it to age charcuterie and cheese. There are over 35 recipes total, including Popcorn Koji and Amazake Rye Bread.

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