Michael's Genuine Food: Down-to-Earth Cooking for People Who Love to Eat


JAMES BEARD AWARD–WINNING CHEF Michael Schwartz put Miami’s Design District on the culinary map when he opened his restaurant, Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink, in 2007. In a town where food and cocktails are as much a part of the pulse as tans and nightclubs, Michael’s Genuine strikes a very different note. Reviving the city’s dining scene from an overabundance of “Floribbean” cuisine, the restaurant quickly won national praise for its superlative yet unpretentious fare, with Frank Bruni of the New York Times ...
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Michael's Genuine Food

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JAMES BEARD AWARD–WINNING CHEF Michael Schwartz put Miami’s Design District on the culinary map when he opened his restaurant, Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink, in 2007. In a town where food and cocktails are as much a part of the pulse as tans and nightclubs, Michael’s Genuine strikes a very different note. Reviving the city’s dining scene from an overabundance of “Floribbean” cuisine, the restaurant quickly won national praise for its superlative yet unpretentious fare, with Frank Bruni of the New York Times naming it one of the country’s top ten best new restaurants. In his first cookbook, Michael Schwartz shares his approachable, sought-after recipes with home cooks everywhere.

Michael focuses on sourcing exceptional ingredients and treating them properly—which usually means simply. A salad truly becomes a meal, such as BLT Salad with Maple-Cured Bacon, as do pizzas, pastas, soups, and sandwiches. Snacks aren’t precious bits on toothpicks but hearty, eat-with-your-hands fare that can be mixed and matched, such as Caramelized Onion Dip with Thick-Cut Potato Chips and Crispy Polenta Fries with Spicy Ketchup. Side dishes are adventurous accompaniments that hold up mightily on their own, while the boldly flavored main dishes—from Grilled Wild Salmon Steak with Fennel Hash and Sweet Onion Sauce to Grilled Leg of Lamb with Salsa Verde—come in two sizes: large and extra large, for serving family-style at the table. From simple desserts that riff on classic childhood favorites and flavors, including Banana Toffee Panini, to Michael’s favorite drinks, you’ll have everything you need for the perfect dinner at home.

With seventy full-color photographs and abundant ingredient tips to help make the most of what’s freshest at the market, Michael’s Genuine Food is a guide you’ll return to time and time again for meals that will slip everyone into a state of genuine contentment.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
James Beard Award–winner Schwartz serves up a stellar mix of meticulously planned recipes that focus on local ingredients and fresh, seasonal flavors. Sensible and simple, Schwartz is determined to make his audience comfortable in their own kitchens. To the delight of home cooks, he guides them through the rigors of tricky food prep while introducing them to trendy ingredients like Italian fregola, nutty Spanish romesco sauce, and fiery-hot North African harissa. However, readers may unknowingly miss the "basics" section, curiously placed at the end of the book, which is actually paramount to the execution of so many recipes. These include kimchi, easily incorporated into burger toppings and quesadillas, and fresh homemade ricotta, which finishes off a mind-blowing pappardelle with beef sugo. Other flavor-packed essentials like roasted garlic and maple-cured bacon make sporadic appearances throughout the book. Schwartz encourages home cooks to improvise where needed, and provides alternatives when facing more challenging steps. Schwartz effortlessly weaves the same ingredients throughout (page cross-references included), without becoming tired; for instance, he reminds readers that they can use habanero hot sauce in a bloody mary as well as buffalo style spices. (Mar.)
From the Publisher
"Michael has perfect recipes that combine hand-picked ingredients with awesome fresh flavors. He gives you simple and delicious food prepared with love…what could be better! You'll make lots of friends with this cookbook."
--Emeril Lagasse

"Cooking from Michael's Genuine Food is like getting a private master class in the art of eating well. Michael effortlessly pulls back the curtain on pretense and pomp to reveal recipe after recipe of satisfying food. His approach to food is warm, casual, and—well—always genuine."
--Gail Simmons

"Michael's food is honest, his flavors bold, and his approach to sourcing ingredients thoroughly modern."
--Tom Colicchio

"The food at Michael’s restaurant is always a delicious treat. Now with this wonderful book we can all have it at home. Yummy!"
--Maida Heatter

"The recipes featured in Michael’s cookbook are full of a sunny Florida spirit, and are the kinds of dishes I love to eat with friends. They are honest, ingredient-driven, and full of flavor."
--Daniel Boulud

"Michael Schwartz is truly one of the greatest American chefs of our day.  My favorite part of trips to Miami isn't the beach or the nightlife; it's my meal at Michael's Genuine. I can't wait to make his Roasted Sweet Onions, BLT Salad, and Slow-Roasted Short Ribs with Romesco Sauce--my mouth is watering just thinking about them!"
--Katie Lee

Library Journal
James Beard Association Award winner Schwartz opened Michael's Genuine Food & Drink in Miami in 2007. In his first cookbook, written with Cianciulli (L.A.'s Original Farmers Market Cookbook), he celebrates local food with such ingredients as lobster, avocado, and papaya. Recipes for slow food with Miami flare include Crispy Fish Salad with Shaved Red Onion, Mango, and Soy-Lime Vinaigrette; Michael's Genuine Burger with House Smoked Bacon and Vermont Cheddar; and Whole Roasted Chicken with Plumped Raisins, Toasted Pine Nuts, and Arugula. This will especially appeal to those interested in slow food and the Latin, Caribbean, and U.S. flavors that characterize Miami cuisine.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780307591371
  • Publisher: Potter/TenSpeed/Harmony
  • Publication date: 2/15/2011
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 911,623
  • Product dimensions: 7.60 (w) x 9.72 (h) x 0.94 (d)

Meet the Author

MICHAEL SCHWARTZ, a James Beard Award winner and former Top Chef guest judge, is the chef-owner of Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink in Miami and the Cayman Islands. Since opening in March 2007, the restaurant has been lauded by the press, including the New York Times, Food & Wine, Gourmet, Esquire, and Condé Nast Traveler.
JOANN CIANCIULLI has written nearly a dozen cookbooks, most recently the acclaimed L.A.’s Original Farmers Market Cookbook, and has collaborated with noted chefs, including Michael Mina and Tyler Florence.
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classic deviled eggs
Makes 24 pieces

Deviled eggs are a classic that doesn't need to be
reinvented with all sorts of fancy ingredients. When it comes to making
hardboiled eggs, the biggest problem is easily overcooking them, which
produces a nasty green ring around the yolk and a rubbery texture. The
explanation for boiling eggs may seem like overkill, but trust me, you will
have total success for the rest of your life.
1 dozen large eggs
¼ cup Best Mayonnaise (page 246) or
quality storebought mayo
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
Juice of ½ lemon
2 dashes Habañero Hot Sauce (page 244)
or storebought hot sauce, or more to
1 teaspoon sweet smoked paprika
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ bunch fresh chives, minced
Ingredient Note
Buy local eggs! More than ever, farmers' markets are selling fresh eggs from heritage chickens. Welltreated chickens that spend a lot of time on pasture, getting exercise and fresh air, and eating green vegetables (which makes the yolk a deep orange color) produce tasty eggs year round. They often come in a rainbow of shell colors that denote the breed of chicken. The yolks of all should be bright orange and the white have body and sit up on itself. Pastured eggs may cost more than conventional eggs, but they deliver a lot more pleasure, are better for the environment, and leave you with a cleaner conscience (you would not want to eat most massmarket eggs if you saw how they are produced).
Put the eggs in a large wide pot, cover with 1 inch of cool water, and set over mediumhigh heat. Starting with cold water and gently bringing the eggs to a boil will help keep them from cracking. Once the water boils, turn off the heat, cover the pot, and let the eggs sit in the hot water for 15 minutes. In the meantime, prepare an ice bath by filling a large bowl halfway with water and adding a tray of ice cubes. The key here is to cool the eggs quickly. Why? It's the best way to prevent discoloration around the yolk and it makes them easy to peel.
Using a strainer or slotted spoon, transfer the eggs to the ice bath. Allow them to sit in the water for 5 minutes so they are completely cool down to the center.
Give each egg a few gentle taps on the kitchen counter; you want to crack the shell without damaging the white underneath. Gently roll the egg around until the shell has small cracks all over it. Peel it off.
Using a paring knife, carefully trim off the ends of the eggs, so they will stand upright when serving. Halve the eggs crosswise (not lengthwise like you're used to seeing) and pop the yolks out and into a food processor. Add the mayonnaise, mustard, lemon juice, hot sauce, half of the paprika, the salt, and pepper. Puree until completely smooth.
Spoon the yolk filling into a pastry bag or a plastic bag with the corner snipped and pipe into the hollowed egg whites. Garnish the eggs with a sprinkle of the remaining paprika and the chives. Serve immediately or refrigerate, covered loosely, for up to 1 day.

habañero hot sauce
Makes 3 cups

For all you chile heads looking for a knockout, eyewatering, tonguetingling sauce, here it is; you may never buy commercially made hot sauce again. But a word to the wise: proceed with caution—this is not meant for wusses. Made from habañeros, one of the fieriest chiles around, this serious sauce achieves the perfect balance between flavor and heat. It's best to protect your hands with a pair of latex gloves to keep the oils off your skin. Carrot is the secret weapon here; it not only adds amazing orange color but also gives the sauce another layer of flavor, with subtle sweetness and body. Use this hot sauce in Fried "Buffalo Style" Rabbit (page 152) or to fire up Bloody Marys or mayo. This sauce will keep practically forever!

1 tablespoon canola oil
½ white onion, coarsely chopped
6 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
1 large carrot, chopped
1 red bell pepper, stemmed, cored,
seeded, and chopped
3 habanero chiles, stemmed and coarsely
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 cup champagne vinegar
2 tablespoons agave nectar
1 tablespoon sweet smoked paprika
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground coriander
2 tablespoons kosher salt
1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
Put a large nonreactive pot over medium heat and coat with the oil. When the oil is hot, add the onion and garlic. Cook, stirring often, until the onion is translucent but not brown, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the carrot, bell pepper, chiles, and tomato paste and stir to combine. Pour in the vinegar and 4 cups water. Give everything a good stir and bring up to a simmer.
Add the agave, paprika, cumin, coriander, salt, and pepper. Reduce the heat to mediumlow and continue to cook until all of the vegetables are super soft, about 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool.
Transfer the cooled sauce to a standard blender (or use an immersion blender) and puree until smooth. Store covered in the fridge for up to 6 months.

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 18, 2011

    Fantastic cookbook for all the right reasons. And I hate to cook

    This book is filled with food I want to eat. I'm no-nonsense and so is this book. It's beautifully written, the food is tantalizing and the processs is just easy. Buy it. You won't regret it a bit.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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