From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. Well-known caterer Basss first book is a rare mixture of good food, great stories and truly unique style; just the right combination to make it a big hit with cookbook fans. From instructions on cooking up an English breakfast complete with Fried Bread and Caramelized Tomatoes to directions for a cocktail party with Salmon Gravlax Tartare on Crisp Potato Slices and Rope Burn drinks, Bass provides the inspiration and directions for entertaining at home. Although theres an English basis to her cooking (she suggests Sausage Rolls and Drop Scones for high tea), Basss easy-going style is familiarly American; she says her cooking is best described as "perfect ingredients, simply cooked, on pretty plates." The stories about her life are winning and sound surprisingly authentic. Describing a pasta dish cooked by her independent older sisters, she writes: "Early on in the month it was full of chicken, mid-month it was canned tuna, and toward the end of the month, clever things would be done with herbs." The advice she offers on both recipes and presentation is equally down-to-earth and sensible, but filled with an admirable joie de vivre. The only problem with the book is a designers decision to oddly highlight, in two different colors and typefaces, seemingly random words and phrases. Its eye-catching in the worst of ways. But such a little flaw hardly keeps this delightful book from being the equal of M.F.K. Fisher, Julia Child and Laurie Colwin at their best. Photos.
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About the Author
London-born SERENA BASS is a high-profile caterer based in New York City. In addition to her successful catering business, she is the namesake behind Serena, the bar/lounge in the basement of the Chelsea Hotel, which she opened in 1999 and has since sold. This is her first book.
DAVID LOFTUS is a widely published food and wine photographer. He is well known for his work with celebrity chefs Jamie Oliver and Tamasin Day-Lewis, and his books include Island Life: Inspirational Interiors
London-based photographer ANDRA NELKI specializes in editorial and promotional photography. Her work is in the collections of such museums as Tate Britain and the National Gallery of Wales.
Illustrator and photographer DAVID CROLAND is based in New York City. His work has appeared in many major periodicals including Vogue, The New York Times
, and The New Yorker