'A keepsake for O.C. community'

New cookbook features recipes from local chefs, foodies. It will be sold to benefit local Junior League projects.

June 11, 2010|By Candice Baker

A new cookbook is making mouths water throughout Orange County.

Cleverly titled "Orange County Fare: A Culinary Journey Through the California Riviera," the tome compiled by the Newport Beach-based Junior League of Orange County boasts hundreds of recipes from local celebrity chefs, luminaries and foodies.

The book will be sold to benefit the league's community outreach projects Saturday at a culinary demonstration by local chef Zov Karamardian, of Zov's Bistro in Tustin and her other eponymous cafes in Newport Coast and Irvine.

"We had more than 450 recipe submissions to the cookbook, and we triple-tested all of them," outgoing cookbook committee chair Courtney Blackwell said; she another committee member self-tested at least half of the submissions themselves.

"Only the best of the best got in," new Junior League President Denise Scott said. About 200 recipes made the final cut, including Karamardian's.


Saturday at the Bloomingdale's Home Store at Fashion Island, Karamardian will prepare zucchini fritters with smoked salmon; Asian noodle chicken salad; and an easy, crowd-pleasing dessert of caramelized apples with cognac and vanilla ice cream.

"I always try to think of ways to serve ooey-gooey desserts that are not that hard to make," she said.

Karamardian said education is one of her passions and priorities. Along with the cooking demonstration at Bloomingdale's, she hosts complimentary classes at her cafes.

She will teach how to make couscous salad with grilled chicken at 11 a.m. July 24 at her Newport Coast location; interested parties can register at, where she also blogs about cooking and food.

Karamardian said she has helped out with past charity cookbooks, and enjoys helping with such endeavors.

"I was really honored to be asked to share a recipe," she said. "The recipe I chose was roasted tenderloin of beef with fresh thyme sauce. Main courses often are a problem for people who entertain. I thought this would be such a good recipe to submit, because it's so good, and it's so foolproof, and it's so elegant. I've gotten a lot of good feedback on it."

Not least of all from Junior League members.

"The sauce is the perfect complement for that dish," Scott said.

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