In THE CALIFORNIA-AMERICAN COOKBOOK, the authors argue persuasively that California, the last continental frontier, the place where all sorts of Americans finally settled, is "the melting pot's melting pot." Whether they were immigrants from other lands or Americans from other parts of the country, the people who came to California brought along traditions connected to family and place, among them the food they knew and that daily rituals of the shared table. Those traditions were restyled, even reinvented, in California.
Every regional and ethnic style possible is represented in California, a state that also happens to be the most extravagantly endowed with wonderful things to eat. Not surprisingly, not one but many new culinary styles have been forged there--from "nouvelle Californian" to "Franco-Japanese" and just about anything in between. A band of highly energetic, well-trained, and very creative chefs helped; so did a willing public and a revived interest in American food in general. As a result, the most original and influential trend in American food in the closing years of the 20th century has its roots in the West.
All of this and more is reflected in THE CALIFORNIA-AMERICAN COOKBOOK, a big, exciting, marvelously eclectic but surprisingly accessible collection of recipes. Its text offers a casual, delightful history of American foodstuffs and dishes as well.
Finally, the authors include "Pantry Fancies," a guide to gourmet food products; suggestions for menus and accompanying wines; and a "glossary" of basic recipes used throughout the book.