Friday, November 21, 2014

Giveaway: Secret Restaurant Recipes Cookbook

Although there aren't many kosher restaurants here in Denver, I was lucky enough to experience the amazing kosher options in the New Jersey and New York area, not to mention in Israel. Pair this with a childhood grown up with my mom whipping up some classic restaurant recipes from places like Red Lobster (those cheddar biscuits were to die for), and a cookbook with secret kosher restaurant recipes was made for me.

Yes, this is a review and giveaway post, and I shocked myself with this cookbook. After looking through the index and knowing a lot of the restaurants, I was worried I wouldn't be able to find anything with my two at-home cooking criteria:
  • gluten free
  • vegetarian
Luckily, I'm a creative cook and the recipes are easily changed for the discerning and committed cook.

As one of the things I'm missing most in the world is amazing kosher Chinese food (oh those evenings with Chopstix in Teaneck, I wish I had cherished you more), I immediately decided to make the Sesame Chicken from Kosher Chinese Express in Manalapan, New Jersey happen with tempeh in place of the chicken and tamarin in place of the soy sauce.

The result? This is seriously the most delicious thing I've made lately, and that's after absolutely falling in love with Isa Chandra Moskowitz's Buffalo Tempeh Sandwiches. I have a new love, and it's the sesame sauce in this recipe. I can't believe I never tried to make my own, because it was really easy and it's super tasty. I could put this on just about anything, and the tempeh was an excellent, meaty substitute.

Then I decided to tackle the Tilapia with Terra Chip Crunch from The Purple Pear, as Terra Chips are naturally gluten free, fish is a staple in our house, and when I lived out east I loved The Purple Pear. (Yelp has the reviews to prove it.)

I will admit that I didn't have granulated onion or garlic on hand, and I ended up subbing in some mirin for the corn syrup. I also picked up some seasonal Sweet Potato-Pumpkin Terra Chips instead of the Terra Sticks and Sun Dried Tomato Terra Chips. The result? Delicious and beautiful.

This cookbook has everything (yes, thinking SNL here): tips from the restaurant chefs and owners, advice on kitchen tools, beautiful pictures for every recipe, and more. I have to tell you that pictures are so critical in my decision on whether to purchase a cookbook. Basically, I only buy cookbooks with tons of pictures. I need perspective!

Thus, giveaway of this cookbook (a $29.99 value) just in time for Chanukah, too, so even if you're not a cook, you surely know one!

(NOTE: You must enter on the web. It will not work properly on mobile.)