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Claire's Corner Copia Cookbook: 225 Homestyle Vegetarian Recipes from Claire's Family to Yours Paperback – November 1, 1994


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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

In 1975, Claire Criscuolo founded the vegetarian restaurant Claire's Corner Copia, in New Haven, Connecticut. The restaurant soon earned a reputation for simple but delicious home-style fare, prompting Criscuolo to write Claire's Corner Copia Cookbook, a compilation of the restaurant's 225 best recipes. Devotees of healthful vegetarian cooking that emphasizes whole grains, fresh produce, and seasonal specialties will welcome Criscuolo's book.

Providing dishes organized by courses and food or meal categories such as sandwiches and breakfast, Criscuolo's book also reflects her Italian heritage, with its penchant for rich, vegetable-laced soups and hearty pasta entrées. Dishes like My Mother-in-Law's Special Holiday Soup, replete with beans, cauliflower, broccoli, escarole, and spinach, and Baked Rigatoni with Amalfitan Sauce, a marinara sauce-based dish, are savory examples of Criscuolo's Italian-influenced fare. Other cultures are represented by dishes such as Mexican Stuffed Peppers, made with a corn and rice filling; Hummus and Tomato on Wheat Bread, a particularly flavorful sandwich; and Szechuan-Style Eggplant. Criscuolo's baked specialties, including Cheddar Scones, Corn-Walnut Muffins, and Pumpkin-Walnut Pie, are of particular interest. Though the quest for healthy dishes occasionally leads Criscuolo to offer recipes featuring food substitutes or dubious low-fat products, most of her cooking is honest and tempting and should find its way to the everyday tables of all food lovers. -- Arthur Boehm

From Kirkus Reviews

Criscuolo, owner since 1975 of a vegetarian restaurant in New Haven, Conn., has waited too long to put out this cookbook, and that is both compliment and criticism. Criscuolo herself notes in an introduction that while Middle Eastern and Mexican foods were mostly unknown when she began serving them, ``now they're on menus everywhere.'' Exactly--and they're in cookbooks everywhere, too. However, this collection does offer solid recipes for some vegetarian favorites, and Criscuolo takes a pleasant tone: friendly and never condescending (``A good store bought pastry is fine,'' she writes reassuringly in a recipe for escarole pie). While one chapter is devoted to Mexican specialties, the strongest influence here is Italian, thanks to Criscuolo's roots on New Haven's Wooster Street--an Italian-American neighborhood--and her mother, who ``always had a pot of soup going.'' Soups and baked goods are particularly strong. A chapter on the former includes myriad creative vegetable and bean soups, including a spicy pasta-and-bean soup with a porridge-like consistency. A section on breakfast provides several good muffin options, like surprisingly moist bran- apple muffins (Criscuolo does not eschew refined sugar and white flour, so the muffins have no heavy health-food feel). Occasionally, it becomes obvious that these recipes were developed in a restaurant and not in a home kitchen. When fried over medium- low heat in a scanty half cup of oil as instructed, the zesty batter for zucchini fritters turned mushy on the outside and remained raw on the inside. On an industrial stove, results would likely have been crispier. Nostalgia food for aging hippies and homesick Yalies. -- Copyright ©1994, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Plume; (4th printing) edition (November 1, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0452271762
  • ISBN-13: 978-0452271760
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 7.2 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #453,639 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
5 star
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See all 10 customer reviews
My son & daughter in law are very happy with this gift!
RMC
Each chapter is preceded by personal information, recipes are easy to follow, ingredients easy to find, and the finished product is very delicious.
James J. Rupp
My favorite lunch was soup, a mini loaf of bread and carrot cake with butter cream frosting.
Marie44

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 21 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 19, 1997
Format: Paperback
Visiting Claire's Corner Copia for lunch was always a treat when I was growing up in New Haven,
so I was very excited when my mother gave me Claire's cookbook for Christmas 2 years ago. It did not disappoint. The recipes are delicious and easy to follow and many have an Italian flavor. I think the best recommendation I can give is that my meat-loving husband enjoys the meals I have prepared from this cookbook- his favorite is the Eggplant "Meatballs"- try them!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By James J. Rupp on October 12, 2003
Format: Paperback
I had been wanting to visit Cliare's for weveral years. Last summer, I finally ate there, and enjoyed every bite, especially the trifle dessert. Also on the trip, I purchased this cookbook, and absolutely love it. I'm critical of many books, but find this to be very well-written. Each chapter is preceded by personal information, recipes are easy to follow, ingredients easy to find, and the finished product is very delicious. A cookbook that I will use over and over again, unlike many others which are not as easy to work with. The cover is very colorful and enticing. I'm ordering one for a friend, and hoping for a return-visit to Claire's. I'm from New York City, and have lived in four states, and Claire's is one of the best retaurants in the U.S. ----Maure, in Illinois
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By SMG on January 19, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I frequent New Haven for business at Yale, and Claire's is my favorite eatery. Even my non-veggie friends love it. The cookbook has a wide variety of dishes, the Angel Hair Pasta Salad being a family favorite. The Lithuanian Coffee Cake is also good, but doesn't measure up to the original at Claire's. If you are vegetarian or love good food, you'll love this cookbook.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Marie44 on January 15, 2007
Format: Paperback
When I lived in New Haven, my favorite lunchtime place was Claire's Corner Copia. My favorite lunch was soup, a mini loaf of bread and carrot cake with butter cream frosting. The frosting was so popular, it was kept in a bucket, and the staff would scoop out a giant portion and slather it on the cake. I'm so glad I can make it from this cookbook now that I'm on the west coast and can't make my weekly trek to Claire's. And the soup! I never had a bad one--they were all great, and they're here, too. Get this book and also Claire's Italian Feast. If you can't get to the restaurant, these recipes are the next best thing.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jennie L. Martin on October 24, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This vegetarian cookbook is one of the best I've read and used yet. I've made several recipes and they are easy, fast, and delicious. Another thing I liked about this cookbook is that most of the ingredients you will have on hand or they are easily accessible at any grocery store. I recommend this book to anyone.
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