Andrews McNeel Publishing, $25
For his fourth book, celebuchef John Besh, ye of insanely blue eyes, takes us on a tour of home-cooked meals and favorites. The paperback is meant to endure splatters — it'll handle whatever roux you're working with. Broken down into 11 chapters, the book is bright and easy to follow. Learn how to whip up a crab meat spinach dip as an app, creamy cauliflower soup or a brown shrimp and okra stew for those upcoming fall evenings. Always one to add a great dessert chapter, Besh includes rustic recipes for fruit pies and bread pudding.
Ten Speed Press, $18.99
This wee book packs in a serious batch of spicy chili recipes and history. Compiled by Robb Walsh, author and Beard Award nominee, The Chili Cookbook dives into regional chili history. Learn about lobster chili and more in Chili's Family Tree; the San Antonio Chili Queens in Tex-Mex Traditions; and try your hand at the Obama Family Chili in Chili Road Trip. The final part of the book tackles modern and vegetarian chili, including a white chicken poblano chili and borracho black bean chili. You'll want to keep this book near the crockpot this fall.
Rutgers University Press, $27.95
Not at all a cookbook, this paperback is written by Deborah A. Harris, an associate professor of sociology at Texas State University, and Patti Giuffre, a professor of sociology at the same university. The women tackle gender in the food industry by poring through 2,000 chef profiles and restaurant reviews. Through 33 interviews, the authors pinpoint the reasons for professional obstacles ("everything from women's periods to pregnancy was mentioned as a reason why women were seen as less physically capable than men chefs,") they find in the Fitting In and Standing Out chapter. Follow along as the authors try to crack whether sex plays a role in the real work of a chef.
Meet the authors on Thursday, October 15 at 6 p.m. The Twig (306 Pearl Pkwy., Suite 106, (210) 826-6411.
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