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The City Tavern Cookbook: Recipes from the Birthplace of American Cuisine Hardcover – May 12, 2009

104 customer reviews

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The City Tavern Cookbook: Recipes from the Birthplace of American Cuisine + Sweet Taste of History: More Than 100 Elegant Dessert Recipes From America'S Earliest Days + The First American Cookbook: A Facsimile of "American Cookery," 1796
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Chef Walter Staib is a highly acclaimed chef, restaurateur, and author. He has been named the “Culinary Ambassador to the City of Philadelphia,” and has received numerous awards and recognition for his outstanding cuisine. A third-generation restaurateur with over four decades of culinary experience, Chef Staib received formal training in many of Europe’s finest hotels and restaurants.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 392 pages
  • Publisher: Running Press; 4.12.2009 edition (May 12, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0762434171
  • ISBN-13: 978-0762434176
  • Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 8.8 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (104 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #82,176 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By S. Newell on February 11, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am a big history buff, so I love all of the facts that are written along with the recipes. I am not a master cook and figured the recipes would be difficult. That is not the case. I have made 4 so far and they have turned out great!
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By B. E. Shaw on March 24, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It is somewhat ironic that one of the best books on traditional American cuisine is written by a German chef... but what a pleasant irony. Chef Staib has clearly established himself more than just a great chef and restauranteur, but a great historian.

Chef Staib effectively tells the story of American colonial life with an emphasis on the various influences on their cuisine. This story is colorfully depicted in The City Tavern Cookbook, together with an extraordinary collection of recipes that are extremely well written and easily executed by a home cook.

The City Tavern Cookbook allows anyone to experience the wealth and breadth of colonial American foods in their own home. Chef Staib's brilliant resurrection of City Tavern allows all of us to a unique experience of re-living a special aspect of early American life in a realistic setting, should we be forunate enough to venture to Philadelphia.

Although not from Philadelphia, I was born and baptized in the spirit of New England colonial America. Only now do I understand where some of the dishes cooked and served by my grandmother and mother came from. To me it was just good food that was familiar and comforting. Now I know that some of these recipes that I enjoyed have a deep heritage coming from our forefather's homelands and other influences of colonial trading.

I highly recommend this as the "go-to" book for true American cuisine.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on July 18, 2009
Format: Hardcover
THE CITY TAVERN COOKBOOK: RECIPES FROM THE BIRTHPLACE OF AMERICAN CUISINE discusses both the food and the social and political atmosphere of 18th century Philadelphia, gathering and presenting recipes for over 300 dishes from roasted duckling with chutney to a chocolate mousse cake made by Martha Washington. Color photos pepper a fine presentation for any collection strong in American cuisine.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Life-long Learner/Reader on November 22, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I love the recipes in this book. They are sophisticated in flavors but simple in technique and aimed at the family cook and family table. I highly recommend the accompanied DVD series "A Taste of History" that's available on the City Tavern website.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By J. Smith on January 8, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I love the book and variety of recipes contained therein. It is important to note that the recipes are not the exact same recipes that are on the show, A Taste of History, at least the few that I have reviewed. The recipe for Beef Barley Soup is quite different but delicious nonetheless. The recipes in the book were adapted to today's modern kitchen as opposed to the hearth as used on the show.

It is a beautiful book with wonderful recipes and I look forward to trying many of them. This is a great book for anybody's culinary library!
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Walter Figel on November 24, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I went to UPenn and ate there, my son went to UPenn and we all ate there, now we can eat what is served there anytime we want. This is one of the oldest restaurants in all of America and is just as fabulous as it was in the late 1700s. The book is just great in recreating the authentic food that is served nightly in Philadelphia. You will not be disappointed in the results and the pictures and stories in the book make good historic reading on top of that. The founding fathers ate there and you to can taste the wonderful food even if you are not in Philadelphia. Go for it, you will not be disappointed at all.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Sandy on July 21, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Love the simple recipes, getting back to basics. Cooking the way our ancestors cooked. Simple fare. Easy to do. Getting out the cast iron cookware our great grandmas used. Our family is getting away from boxed microwaveable processed "food" (if you can call it food. I call it chemical experimenting on you body). We purchase farm vegetables and fruits, meats from various stores and simply cook on our open fire put on our deck, duplicating Chef Staib's open hearth cooking.The flavor is fantastic and it is fun , like a picnic. We also use our indoor oven and range. We can eat much healthier and physically we feel alot better, more energetic too. We enjoy the food cooked this way and it really doesn't take that much more time to prepare. We spend alot more time on the deck enjoying the great sunshine ! Thank you Walter Staib, we love you and your tv show !!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Gum on August 27, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I enjoy Chef Staib's show A Taste of History. He almost makes cooking at a hearth look easy. Thankfully, the book contains modern adaptations of those recipes. There are other recipes I haven't seen on the show. I haven't tried any of the recipes, yet. A lot of them use wine, which I love, but my husband doesn't, and there are several German recipes, which I will be trying. My favorite part of the book is that each recipe is preceded by a short history of the recipe, often mentioning a colonial cookbook author. This is just as much a history book as it is a cookbook. If you are from the Philadelphia area, you will probably know many of the places Chef Staib mentions.
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The City Tavern Cookbook: Recipes from the Birthplace of American Cuisine
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