New American Recipes from the Nation’s Top Foreign-Born Chefs

Written by | Food

a place at the table plating

Images from “A Place at the Table” courtesy Prestel Press

A Place at the Table: New American Recipes from the Nation’s Top Foreign-Born Chefs
Edited by Gabrielle Langholtz & Rick Kinsel;
Prestel Press; $40.00

Despite rabid xenophobia on the part of some of our elected officials, the U.S. traditionally regards itself as a melting pot of people and ideas. Perhaps this is best represented in our vast variety of culinary experiences. Luckily for foodies and hungry people everywhere Americans have a long rich tradition of adopting the cuisines of newcomers. Consider what a night in would be without options like pizza, pad thai, tacos or sushi.

a place at the table cover

In A Place at the Table: New American Recipes from the Nation’s Top Foreign-Born Chefs editors Gabrielle Langholtz and Rick Kinsel have collected recipes from chefs who came to our shores with unique takes on (and taste in) food. This volume was created in partnership with the Vilcek Foundation, an organization which celebrates the contributions of immigrants to American society. Some 40 chefs are represented, including Dominique Crenn of France and San Francisco and Marcus Samuelsson with his Ethiopian/Swedish influences. Emma Bengsston, who brought her Western Swedish to New York is also celebrated along with rising stars.

Consider Scallops with Ponzu-Poached Butternut Squash by Colombian-born, French-trained chef Cesar Gutierrez for your next pescatarian guest. Open a fine wine to pair with chef Joseph Sukhendra’s Rosemary-Roasted Leg of Lamb and Mint Chutney. Sukhendra was born in New Zealand of Fijian and Indian heritage, and his recipe celebrates both savory influences.

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Charles Olalia offers up a dessert based on a dish from his native Philippines using a staple found in American fruit bowls and larders all over the country: it’s a Banana Bibingka cake sweetened partially by coconut milk. “Moving stateside has allowed me to gain valuable experience I could not have gained if I stayed in the Philippines,” Olalia states simply. That sentiment is echoed by the chefs over and over again. They treasure the food cultures they came to and from. And they each celebrate creating something exciting and new. As American eaters, we are lucky to have such international fare on our menus and on our lips.

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Last modified: July 23, 2019