6 Restaurant Cookbooks to Keep You Dining In

Geoffrey Zakarian\'s Town/Country: 150 Recipes for Life Around the Table TOWN/COUNTRY GEOFFREY ZAKARIAN Taking his cue from his two New York City restaurants, Town and Country, Zakarian uses 65 ingredients to make both fancy “town” and more everyday “country” recipes. For instance, the town selection offers a decadent Lobster Ginger Royale with ginger broth and coconut custard; the country version is an equally delicious but simpler lobster roll made with store-bought mayo.THE STINKING ROSE ANDREA FRONCILLO The original Stinking Rose in San Francisco is renowned for its use of garlic, even in cocktails. This book presents simple but sublime recipes for pungent pastas, garlic-encrusted baby back ribs, creamy garlic-spinach fondue, chicken with 40 cloves of garlic and, right, pizzas. The faint of heart or palate, however, may want to skip the garlic ice cream.

MORTON’S STEAK BIBLE KLAUS FRITCH This meaty tome is filled with easy-to-follow recipes for steakhouse favorites like garlicky creamed spinach, perfectly crisp hash-brown potatoes and a sumptuous shrimp Alexander with beurre blanc. But in the end, it’s all about the beef, and the book provides invaluable tips about how to select meat and cook it: all cuts except ground meat should be brought to room temperature and sprinkled lightly with seasoned salt. And, of course, when grilling, you should turn steak only once.

THE LEVER HOUSE COOKBOOK DAN SILVERMAN AND JOANN CIANCIULLI

When the green-glass Lever House building opened in 1952, it was called “the eighth wonder of the world.” Nowadays the wonder is the building’s eponymous restaurant, where chef Dan Silverman serves his imaginative seasonal menus. This cookbook allows the home cook to confidently re-create dishes like buttery cod with black-olive-and-onion confit or sorrel soup with smoked trout.

BIG SMALL PLATES CINDY PAWLCYN Famed for her work at Fog City Diner, Mustards Grill and Cindy’s Backstreet Kitchen, Pawlcyn has been an integral part of the California dining scene for more than two decades. In this book, her third, she culls the best small plates from each of her restaurants, including starters, soups and sweets. Among them are light and airy gougères, silky-smooth corn custards topped with buttery morel mushrooms and delicately spiced lamb burgers.

ITALIAN TWO EASY ROSE GRAY AND RUTH ROGERS This is the sixth cookbook from the chef-owners of London’s beloved River Café. The book begins with a dozen easy ways to serve first-course mozzarella cheese, and the recipes that follow, all simple and streamlined, celebrate seasonal foods. It will seem like a snap to create meals like fried eggplant with basil and tomato, left, or rich roast duck simmered in Valpolicella wine.

From the Jul 31, 2006 issue of TIME magazine