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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
New Yorkers know how to eat well all year: They find a great restaurant with a great chef and then return there every week. In this book, the partners of the Union Square Café -- New York's supreme return-to restaurant -- have given us a second peek into the imaginative kitchen where delicacies are born. Here, Danny Meyer and Michael Romano offer us 140 new recipes featuring their worldly take on Italian cuisine, providing 140 reasons to keep coming back.
Meyer and Romano -- the restaurateur-and-chef team that have made Union Square Café one of the most consistently delicious restaurants in Manhattan -- focus our attention on traditional recipes prepared with flair. For example, in their Steamed Clams and Arugula recipe, the authors suggest using a variation of traditional white clam sauce as a dipping broth for bruschette; in their Olive-Mashed Potatoes, they jazz up a simple starch with olives, juniper berries, and rosemary. Meyer and Romano also add an imaginative touch to an old favorite with Monkfish Scarpariello, which ladles a traditional fennel sausage, sweet pepper, and mushroom sauce over a fresh fish choice.
Illustrated with witty photographs from Duane Michals, Second Helpings from Union Square Café is an appealing, fun book with delicious dishes to try. Meyer and Romano also include a handy guide to locating less common ingredients, along with informative notes on preparation. It's the perfect addition to a cookbook library glutted with books that are either too traditional or too trendy: Meyer and Romano offer a new-friend zest to their old-friend recipes, and bring us back for more. (Jesse Gale)