When I think about American food, I think about the road, because that’s how I grew up–and that’s how I learned first-hand about American cooking. From childhood family road trips between Ohio and Florida (full of Southern grub and citrus straight from the trees); cross-country hauls in search of the Great American Breakfast; and five-meal-a-day swings through barbeque country, I’ve been horizon-bound from behind a dashboard for most of my life. In big cities, I’ve eaten through local cuisines from around the world in a single day thinking, this is what makes America awesome.
American Flavor (Harper Collins / Ecco, October 2011) is a collection of lessons learned and stories spun from a culinary life behind the wheel, and behind the stove, written with my wife Gwen Hyman.
Inside you’ll find recipes for everything from cheese pierogies inspired by the Polish church ladies straight out of hometown Cleveland, to my take on barbecued short ribs from L.A.’s Korea Town, smoky southwestern mole and lamb stew that takes me back to one of my first New York apartments in Astoria, Queens. You might notice a few of these dishes on the menu at The Dutch, my American restaurant downtown in SoHo and now Miami Beach.
American Flavor is available for sale on Amazon.com.