In four of our favorite new reads, chefs and food writers regale readers with tales and tempting recipes from kitchens around the world.

By Susan Hanson

Pull up a chair to Naz Deravian’s table and pass the pilaf. The Iranian-born food blogger’s Bottom of the Pot: Persian Recipes and Stories is an engaging read that enlightens readers about the warm Persian culture and its vibrant cuisine. Its 100-plus easy-to-follow recipes are paired with beautiful photography (case in point: our featured image above) and colorful narratives that are so vivid, the scent of saffron and rose petals seems to waft from the pages.

Photos courtesy of Eric Wolfinger

 

“Keep Austin Weird” is a mantra that extends to the Texas capital’s eclectic culinary scene, as Paula Forbes can attest. The founding editor of Eater Austin organizes The Austin Cookbook: Recipes and Stories from Deep in the Heart of Texas by the city’s “major food groups” – think barbecue, tacos, and Tex-Mex – sharing secret recipes for its beloved beet fries and smoked brisket, along with yarns about local characters and restaurant legends.In 2004, 12 Nordic chefs met in Copenhagen to create a manifest for a new food movement based on purity, simplicity, and freshness, with an emphasis on sustainability and the changing seasons. Nordic by Nature: Nordic Cuisine and Culinary Excursions offers a raw look into this delicious revolution while stepping into the kitchens of such Danish luminaries as Claus Meyer (Noma) and Nicolai Nørregaard (Kadeau).

Photo courtesy of Michael Jepsen

 

Basque Country has long been an enigma, fiercely independent with its own language, culture, and, most famously, cuisine. This tiny region in northern Spain boasts more Michelin-starred restaurants per capita than anywhere else in the world, and writer/cook Marti Buckley has insight into why. In Basque Country: A Culinary Journey Through a Food Lover’s Paradise, the Alabama native provides an intimate peek inside the kitchens, cafés, and famous txokos (private dining clubs) of her adopted home.