If home is where the heart is, Hall’s new book, Carla’s Comfort Foods: Favorite Dishes from Around the World, written with Genevieve Ko, makes it clear that everywhere is, in its own way, down home, and we all share a kitchen whether we realize it or not.
Chicken, beef, and fish show up on almost every table in the world. The same head of cabbage shreds gracefully into a creamy slaw in the Bahamas, a cucumber-carrot slaw in Singapore, and a hot cabbage slaw in Central America. Corn is grits in the American south, polenta in Italy, and a sweet breakfast porridge in Jamaica. In Carla’s Comfort Foods, chicken stamps its passport in recipes in nine different culinary traditions. Sometimes it’s a matter of technique, sometimes it’s a shift along the spectrum of spices, sometimes it’s a new ingredient. But it’s all home cookin’ and it’s all good.
And the recipes hit exactly the right note. Most of the ingredients are probably already in your pantry. The cooking techniques are basic -- and if Hall suspects something might be tricky, there’s a side bar (“Carla’s Tips”) to help you get it right. The next thing you know, there's Japanese food on the table: Salmon Teriyaki.
Hall, a co-host of ABC’s ‘The Chew” (broadcast locally on KGO 7, weekdays at noon) and a Top Chef finalist, will be in the San Francisco Bay Area on Thursday, April 10, in San Francisco at Omnivore books, and Saturday April 12 at Sur la Table in San Jose. Both events are free.
Write it down, show up, and buy a book. Get a little comfort, and share some; it's all in the book.
CARLA HALL reads from
Thursday, April 10 – 6:30 – 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, April 12 – 5:00 – 7:00 p.m.