Winner of the James Beard Award for the Best Restaurant in America, the acclaimed Union Square Cafe serves some of the most imaginative, interesting, and tasty food in America. With this classic cookbook, winner of a Julia Child Cookbook Award, its devoted fans from down the block and across the globe can savor the restaurant's marvelous dishes, trademark hospitality, and warm decor at home.
Here are recipes for 160 of Union Square Cafe's unforgettable dishes, from appetizers, soups, and sandwiches to main courses, vegetables, and desserts. Hot Garlic Potato Chips, Porcini Gnocchi with Prosciutto and Parmigiano Cream, Grilled Marinated Fillet Mignon of Tuna, Ratatouille-Stuffed Zucchini Blossoms, and Baked Banana Tart with Caramel and Macadamia Nuts are just some of the timeless favorites included in this essential collection. Filled with the vitality, warm artwork, and tempting recipes of its namesake, The Union Square Cafe Cookbook ensures that the restaurant's pleasures are as close as your bookshelf.
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About the Author
Danny Meyer, a native of St. Louis, opened his first restaurant, Union Square Cafe, in 1985 when he was twenty-seven, and went on to found the Union Square Hospitality Group, which includes some of New York City's most acclaimed restaurants: Union Square Cafe, Gramercy Tavern, The Modern, Maialino, North End Grill, Blue Smoke, and Shake Shack, as well as Jazz Standard, Union Square Events, and Hospitality Quotient. Danny, his restaurants, and his chefs have earned an unprecedented twenty-five James Beard Awards. Danny's groundbreaking business book, Setting the Table, was a New York Times bestseller, and he has coauthored two cookbooks with his business partner, Chef Michael Romano. Danny lives in New York with his wife and children.
Michael Romano joined Union Square Cafe in 1988, preparing his unique style of American cuisine with an Italian soul. In 1993, Michael became Danny Meyer's partner. Under Michael's leadership, Union Square Cafe has been ranked Most Popular in New York City Zagat surveys for a record seven years. The restaurant also received the James Beard Award for Outstanding Restaurant of the Year. Michael has coauthored two cookbooks with Danny Meyer, The Union Square Cafe Cookbook and Second Helpings. He is the recipient of numerous nominations and awards, including the James Beard Foundation's Best Chef in New York City in 2001, and in 2000, he was inducted into the James Beard Foundation's Who's Who of Food & Beverage in America.
Read an Excerpt
Baked Ricotta and Spinach Tart
Serves 6 to 8
Inspired by a treasured Romano family recipe, this savory deep-dish tart is wonderful as an appetizer or as a meal in itself accompanied by a crisp salad. Served on the side, hot Tomato Coulis further enlivens the tart.
30 ounces whole-milk ricotta cheese (4 cups)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
12 tablespoons (11/2 sticks) butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces and chilled
5 tablespoons ice water
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 pound spinach, stemmed and cleaned
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup peeled and diced onion
11/2 teaspoons minced fresh marjoram
1/4 pound prosciutto, diced (1 cup)
3 large eggs
1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1. Place the ricotta in a strainer lined with cheesecloth and allow to drain over a bowl, covered and refrigerated, for 2 hours.
2. To prepare the tart dough, combine the flour and 1/2 teaspoon of the salt in a bowl. Add the chilled butter and, using your fingertips or two knives, blend until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Work in the ice water until the dough holds together. Form the dough into a smooth, flat disk, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
3. Lightly flour a clean work surface and roll the dough into a 16--inch disk.Place the rolled-out dough into a 10 x 2 1/2 -inch-deep cake pan or springform mold.Pressing with your fingertips, flute the top edges of the dough.Place in the freezer and chill thoroughly, about 30 minutes.
4. In a medium skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil over high heat andsauté the spinach, stirring constantly until wilted, about 2 minutes.Season with 1/4 teaspoon salt and half the pepper.Place the cooked spinach in a colander and drain.Chop fine and reserve.
5. In the same skillet, add the remaining tablespoon olive oil and cook the onion 3 to 5 minutes over medium heat until translucent.Add the marjoram and prosciutto.Stir and cook an additional 2 minutes.Set aside.
6. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
7. In a large bowl, beat the eggs and add the drained ricotta, spinach, onion, and prosciutto.Season with the nutmeg and remaining salt and pepper.Set aside.
8. Line the tart shell with aluminum foil and fill with dried beans or pastry weights.Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until the dough is set.Remove the foil and beans and cook an additional 10 minutes, or until the dough is light brown.
9. Lower the oven temperature to 375 degrees.Spread the ricotta and spinach mixture evenly in the tart, place on the middle rack of the oven, and bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes, until the filling is set and the top golden brown.Let rest for 15 to 20 minutes, slice into wedges, and serve.
Pan-Roasted Salmon with Citrus-Balsamic Vinaigrette
In this recipe, the salmon is seared on one side while the other side is flash-roasted in a hot oven.The richness of the fish is set off by the tangy and slightly sweet vinaigrette made with orange juice, balsamic vinegar, and herbs.A perfect accompaniment for this dish is Three-Grain Pilaf with Almonds and Shiitake Mushrooms.
Sauce3/4 cup fresh orange juice
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 anchovy fillet, very finely minced (optional)
2 tablespoons finely minced onion
2 teaspoons each coarsely chopped parsley, basil,and mint
2 tablespoons finely minced orange zest
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Salmon4 6-ounce skinless fillets of salmon
Freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
2. Combine all the sauce ingredients in a glass jar, cover tightly, and shake vigorously.Reserve.
3. Season the salmon with salt and pepper to taste.In a skillet large enough to hold all the salmon, heat the olive oil over high heat. Place the salmon in the pan with its original skin side down.Transfer the pan to the oven and roast for 8 to 10 minutes, until medium rare, or longer if desired.Transfer the cooked salmon to a serving platter and keep warm while finishing the sauce.
4. Wipe out any olive oil remaining in the skillet and add the sauce.Heat through for a few seconds over high heat, spoon the sauce over the salmon, and serve.Union Square Cafe Cookbook. Copyright © by Danny Meyer. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I miss the Union Square Cafe! When I lived in New York I went there about once a month, thanks to media reps. This cookbook is true to the restaurant's spirit and, if you follow them, the dishes taste like you remember.