By HALEY ZAMORA
Although it may be too hot to turn on the oven, readers can live vicariously through these five fun cookbooks penned by celebrity authors:
Best known for his role in the film Machete as the title character, actor Danny Trejo released his first cookbook: “Trejo’s Tacos: Recipes and Stories from L.A.: A Cookbook” in 2020. Focusing on Mexican cuisine, his San Fernando Valley upbringing, and his journey into becoming a restaurateur, Trejo has created a surprisingly wonderful book that is five parts recipes, two parts autobiography, and one part history of Los Angeles. Trejo offers something for everyone — from carnivores to vegans — with recipes like award-winning vegan cauliflower tacos to a sweet and spicy brisket. Highly recommended for those trying to up their Taco Tuesday game.
“Antoni in the Kitchen” is the first cookbook by food and wine expert, Antoni Porowski — one of the stars of Netflix’s “Queer Eye.” Porowski’s cookbook features quasi-healthy, beautifully presented recipes that make great use of five ingredients or less. Readers can expect delicious recipes like “Malaysian Chili Shrimp” or “Salty Lemon Squares.” Perfect for those looking to impress guests or create an amazing meal for that special someone.
Snoop Dogg released his first cookbook “From Crook to Cook” in 2018. The forward was written by his BFF (and cook to crook and back again) Martha Stewart. This cookbook features down-to-earth recipes like “Tha Thickness Gravy” and “Spaghetti de la Hood” with Snoop-curated song lists that accompany the recipes, clear directions, and purely entertaining commentary. Highly recommended for Snoop fans, beginner chefs, and those who are not currently on a diet.
Did you know actor Stanley Tucci is also a writer and accomplished cook? No? Me either! Tucci and his wife, Felicity Blunt, have created a wonderful cookbook entitled “The Tucci Table: Cooking with Family and Friends.” Tucci’s fare features Italian, British, and American-influenced recipes that are down to earth and delicious. With more than 100 mouthwatering photographs, home chefs will be clamoring to make recipes like pasta alla bottarga, mushroom-stuffed trout, pork chops with onions and mustard sauce, barbeque chicken wings and much more. For those who want to share their love for friends and family through food — this cookbook is a must.
Celebrated singer and New York Times best-selling author, Patti LaBelle, has focused on the sweet life in her 2017 cookbook “Desserts LaBelle: Soulful Sweets to Sing About.” LaBelle is an old-school baker and her recipes for puddings, pies, and other treats are straight-forward and delicious. LaBelle shares personal stories and family recipes and is highly recommended for anyone with a sweet tooth.
All these titles and the latest library news can be found at SDCL.org. We are also offering our Summer Learning Program online with easy registration and participation for all ages no matter where you are this summer. Sign up at sdcl.org/summer to see how we can help you read, learn, and create!
— Haley Zamora is a librarian at the La Mesa branch of the San Diego County Library.