Check It Out:

Hey good lookin', what's cookin'?

January 09, 2010|By Library Staff

What’s cooking at the library? A new series of culinary events featuring top local chefs begins at the Central Library on Jan. 19.

The kickoff event will be hosted by Dennis Brask, chef of the area’s oldest restaurant, Five Crowns, and the new SideDoor gastropub.

Whether you are able to attend this special program or not, food lovers will find inspiration at the Newport Beach Public Library. There are lots of cookbooks and intriguing culinary secrets to be discovered, including a few that really capture the essence of British cooking at its best.


Some of Five Crowns’ legendary recipes make an appearance in “The Best of Newport.” Learn how to make perennial favorites such as English trifle and their special Horseradish sauce.

This locally produced cookbook offers recipes and tips that are sure to delight any dedicated gourmet.

“The River Cottage Cookbook” by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall expands on the idea of using the freshest, homegrown products to make delicious meals at home that rival those of the best restaurants. Fearnley-Whittingstall provides tips on buying the best produce and live meat along with traditional British recipes.

“Taste: The Story of Britain through Its Cooking” by Kate Colquhoun is a must read for anyone fascinated by historical cookbooks. Pictures and recipes from cookbooks going back more than 1,000 years paint the story of how cooking a family meal has evolved.

Dying to try your hand at making traditional British recipes like steak and kidney pie and treacle tart? Then pick up Jane Garmey’s “Great British Cooking: A Well Kept Secret.”

Garmey is eager to provide the American audience with time-honored British recipes while providing substitutes for ingredients that are harder to find on this side of the pond.

Cooking a good cut of steak to perfection is a challenging task, as any chef who has tried at home can tell you. Cree LaFavour takes the guesswork out of making restaurant tasty beef and sides at home in “The New Steak.”

LaFavour explains the basics to laying the groundwork for a variety of tasty recipes that any novice chef can follow.

For more information on the history of Five Crowns, “A Sterling Tradition: The Story of the Five Crowns,” put out in 1990 to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the restaurant, is available to be read in the library’s Local History Collection.

What’s Cooking at the Library will also present chef Zov Karamardian of Zov’s Bistro in February, along with other local chefs throughout the year. For more information on this series, visit

CHECK IT OUT is written by the staff of the Newport Beach Public Library. All titles may be reserved from home or office computers by accessing the catalog at For more information on the Central Library or any of the branches, please contact the Newport Beach Public Library at (949) 717-3800, option 2.

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