Alfred Portale Simple Pleasures

Home Cooking from the Gotham Bar and Grill's Acclaimed Chef

By Alfred Portale; Andrew Friedman
(William Morrow Cookbooks, Hardcover, 9780060535025, 272pp.)

Publication Date: November 2004

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Description

When you imagine the quintessential New York City restaurant, one name comes to mind: Alfred Portale's Gotham Bar and Grill. The same is true when you think of the top American restaurants:Gotham has been one of our most cherished culinary institutions for two decades.

Led by executive chef and co-owner Alfred Portale, Gotham has been honored with four consecutive New York Times three-star reviews and has resided among the Zagat Survey's top five New York City restaurants for more than ten years. Known for Portale's defining modern American cooking, impeccable service, and soaring space, Gotham was recently named "Most Outstanding Restaurant" in the nation by the James Beard Foundation.

But what does Portale cook when he's not working? In Alfred Portale Simple Pleasures, one of our most accomplished chefs invites you to taste the sublime and surprisingly easy-to-prepare, restaurant-quality dishes he serves to friends and family at home.

The 125 recipes include home versions of Gotham classics as well as new recipes straight from Portale's home kitchen. They're all simple enough for any home cook, and spectacular enough to impress anyone who tastes them.

At the center of Alfred Portale Simple Pleasures are elemental main courses such as Roast Cod with a New England Chowder Sauce, Filet Mignon with Madeira Sauce, and Sautéed Chicken Breasts with Button Mushrooms and Sage. Pick one, then build a meal by pairing it with recipes from the chapters of salads, starters, and small plates; soups, sandwiches, and pizzas; pasta and risotto; side dishes; and desserts.

Along with the recipes, Portale offers pairing suggestions for building a menu, variations for adapting recipes according to season and personal taste, and flavor-building instructions on how to accent a dish with extravagant extras such as caviar or everyday additions such as flavored oils. In other words, home cooks will learn how to add a Gotham-inspired twist to their own favorite recipes.

The supermarket-friendly dishes include modern classics such as Spicy Shrimp Salad with Mango, Avocado, and Lime Vinaigrette; Pumpkin and Caramelized Onion Soup with Gruyère and Sage; and Sautéed Spinach with Garlic, Ginger, and Sesame Oil. Alfred helps you transform everything from ordinary weekday lunches to Saturday night dinner parties into anything but ordinary.

Of course, no meal is complete without dessert, and Portale delivers sweet and sophisticated send-offs, including Lime Meringue Tarts, a simple Summer Plum Pudding, and an elegant Chocolate-Grand Marnier Cake.

Alfred Portale Simple Pleasures -- nothing could be simpler or more pleasurable.




About the Author

Alfred Portale has enjoyed a stellar career since graduating first in his class from the Culinary Institute of America. He worked in several of France's most revered kitchens, then returned to the United States, and, beginning in 1985, established himself as one of our most influential chefs at the Gotham Bar and Grill. Guided by his vision, Gotham was named "Most Outstanding Restaurant" in the nation by the James Beard Foundation, which also has named Portale himself Best Chef in New York City. His first book, Alfred Portale's Gotham Barand Grill Cookbook , won the IACP/Julia Child Cookbook Award. He lives with his wife and children in Manhattan.

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