One of the best things about traveling is tasting new foods. Restrictions may be keeping us in place, but you can still sample flavors of the world from the comfort of your kitchen. Whether you’re wanting to try food from another culture or hoping to add variety to your weeknight rotation, these cookbooks have all that you need to taste the world from home.
If you find yourself craving comfort food, especially as the weather turns colder, the cheese-rich dishes in French Comfort Food by Hillary Davis will warm and satisfy. This book features taller-than-average pages, beautiful photos, and recipes for every meal. Try French toast with orange butter for breakfast. Serve up a classic mac and cheese for lunch. Have a midday snack with cheese souffles in a mug or make it sweet with brie and brown sugar. Settle down to a dinner of caramelized onion and roquefort clafoutis, vegetarian shepherd’s pie, or rib-sticking pork and vegetable stew with giant dumplings. Top it off with a dessert like the luscious raspberry almond mini-cakes. Bon appetit!
Bring more than just pizza and pasta to the family table with Food of the Italian South: Recipes for Classic, Disappearing, and Lost Dishes by Katie Parla. Practice your language skills and prepare for travel abroad with subject headings and recipe titles in both Italian and English. With so many recipes to choose from, the hardest part will be deciding where to begin. You’ll find dozens of new dishes featuring familiar ingredients. Try frittelle di zucchine (zucchini patties), involtini alla piazzetta (frittata-stuffed meat rolls), or lingue di procida (lemon cream-filled pastry.) From antipasti to zuppe and everything in between, this book is like a gift from your favorite Italian Nonni.
Have a meatless Monday any day of the week with fresh recipes from Forest Feast Mediterranean: Simple Vegetarian Recipes Inspired by My Travels by Erin Gleeson. This new volume includes everything we’ve come to expect from the Forest Feast series: simple, easy-to-follow recipes, a colorful layout, and good, vegetable-based food. Be inspired by travel photos of Gleeson and her family as they visit Italy, Portugal, Spain, and France. Try the stuffed cherry peppers, caponata, or made-from-scratch pasta dishes. Sample paella, couscous, and salads including farro-cucumber and Italian wild rice. Treat yourself to a fruity sangria or lavender lemonade. You’ll come away from this colorful volume feeling like you too took three months to travel across Europe.
You’ll be drawn to Tapas: and Other Spanish Plates to Share for its cover– a gorgeous close up of Spanish tiles– and enjoy it for its recipes. Although tapas are traditionally known as small plates, most recipes in this collection are made to serve four and are appropriate for families or small gatherings. Try spicy chicken empanadas, kebabs, or Spanish stuffed peppers. You’ll find plenty of marinades for your favorite meat and lots of seafood dishes including tuna, clam, anchovies, and even octopus.
Ryland Peters & Small
If you’ve always wanted to try food from the Philippines, but have been too intimidated, allow Amboy: Recipes from the Filipino-American Dream by star chef Alvin Cailan and Alexandra Cuerdo to be your guide. You’ll be immediately greeted by smiling family photos of Cailan’s “mom and dad” and a simple recipe for steamed jasmine rice, a staple that anyone can make. Enjoy wholesome soups and rice porridge. Step inside the Sacred Heart Kitchen where Cailan once worked. Meet Lola, Cailan’s “greatest of great grandmas,” and sample some of her recipes. Try the pan de sal (sweet rolls), or niyog (shredded fresh coconut.) While most dishes feature meat and rice, you’ll also find vegetarian options. The voice and personality in this book are so strong, you’ll come away feeling you really have traveled to meet Cailan and his family.
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Travel to the heart of a country and its culture with Israeli Soul: Easy, Essential, Delicious by Michael Solomonov and Steven Cook. You’ll find yourself immersed in place with plenty of pictures featuring the region’s bustling city streets, markets, and people as they prepare traditional dishes. Beautiful, full-color photos highlight step-by-step instructions of the cooking process. You’ll learn to make traditional dishes like falafel, pita bread, sabich, schnitzel, and hummus. There’s a whole section devoted to recipes from the Jerusalem grill and plenty of soups, stews, and salads. Top off the meal with a delicious baked treat or freshly mixed drink. This book really is about the soul of both the country and its cooking.
Rux Martin/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Learn to make restaurant-style food with easy-to-follow recipes in Peached Tortilla: Modern Asian Comfort Food from Tokyo to Texas by Eric Silverstein. From home-cooked meals to fast foods, you’ll find chapters on Chinese and Japanese dishes, food inspired by the American South, noodles and bowls, pickles and sauces, salads and vegetables, sweets, and cocktails. This book offers the ultimate tour of Asian cuisine. Try the Umami Fried Chicken, Bacon and Shrimp Okonomiyaki, or the Japajam Burger. A glossary including photos and short descriptions of popular pantry items makes finding the right ingredients even easier.