4. Gourmet Today
Edited by Ruth Reichl, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2009. Hardcover. $40; 1,024 pages
With more than 1,000 recipes filling more than 1,000 pages, this thunker of a book shares an ambition with The Essential New York Times Cookbook—to be a lively, modern compilation of recipes by a publication with a claim to some cultural importance (alas, the publication died). There is less obsession with history here, and more focus on method, ingredients, techniques, and shopping, with a modern take on each. But Editor Ruth Reichl’s warm voice runs through it, and the mix of recipes is both practical (Tuna Pasta Salad) and surprising (Goat Tacos).