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Must-have New Orleans cookbooks


Creole Nouvelle: Contemporary Creole Cookery by Chef Joseph Carey (Taylor Trade, 2004, $29.95) is an exploration of the new wave of Creole cuisine that focuses on using fresh, local ingredients and bringing tasteful innovations to old standards. Carey, who teaches Creole cooking classes, includes recipes from some of the city's best chef-owners in the genre, including Anne Kearney (former owner of Peristyle), Susan Spicer of Bayona, Peter Vazquez of Marisol, Donald Link of Herbsaint, and John Harris of Lilette. It's available at Maple Street Bookshop (7523 Maple St., 866-4916).

The New Orleans Cookbook by Rima and Richard Collin (Alfred A. Knopf Inc., 2004, $17) enjoyed its 30th printing last year, probably because it not only contains a wealth of Cajun and Creole recipes from the city's revered restaurants, small cafes and country kitchens, but also because it is rich with the area's history, culinary definitions, preparation tips, and suggestions for proper utensils, substitutions when local ingredients aren't available and even where to get supplies for the recipes. The cookbook covers everything from gumbos and soups to local drinks and coffee. It is available at Garden District Book Shop (The Rink, 2727 Prytania St., 895-2266).

Uglesich's Restaurant Cookbook by John Uglesich (Pelican Publishing Company Inc., 2004, $24.95), came about in large part because of the requests from customers at the second-generation New Orleans seafood and po-boy restaurant. Not only does it provide favored recipes served at the restaurant, which has been open since the mid-20s, the author -- son of the current owners -- also includes dishes no longer on Uglesich's menu. There's also a chapter on "Suppliers, Distinctive People and Events of the Restaurant" that includes such local personalities as George Fisher "The Singing Bread Man," who delivered bread and breadcrumbs for Leidenheimer Bakery; Bobby Schwab, "The Shrimp Man"; and Ambrose Schumpbert, known as Ding Ding, a delivery man for Uglesich's in the business district. The cookbook is available at Beaucoup Books (3951 Magazine St., 895-2663).

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