The Red Rooster: The Story of Food and Hustle in Harlem by Marcus Samuelsson - 2016 - A Memoir, Cook Book and a history of Harlem
The Cooking Gene by Michael W. Twitty would be an excellent companion to today’s book.
Anyone with an interest in American food history or contemporary cooking will greatly benefit from this marvelous book. Samuelsson knows and deeply loves the food found in America cooked by descendants of Africa slaves, many of whose grandparents arrived in New York City during the Great Migration. Harlem, starting in the 1930s, became a primary living area for African Americans in New York City and later Hispanic people in what was called Spanish Harlem.
The book begins after a very lucid introduction with a detailed account of the spices he includes in his recipies. He explains where they originated, their flavor and in the case of items not in grocery stores, where you may buy them online. Samuelsson explains that the foods of the African Diaspora
are derivitive from hundreds of seperate cultures, from this southern cooking arose.
There are lots of recipes, which you can cook, in the book. Samuelsson talks about the operation of his business. He turned it into a place where people from all over could enjoy wonderful food. There are chapters on cocktails, chicken (with his recipe for Chicken and Waffles), on greens, on Sunday brunch, and a chapter on Puerto Rican food.
The account of President Obama visit is very exciting with a recipe for “Obama’s Short Ribs”. There is even a recipe for his special hot sauce, try it with a glass of milk nearby.
A history of Harlem emerges in the recipes.
This book is a delicious and delightful.
“Award-Winning Chef, Restaurateur, Author, and Co-Owner of Red Rooster Harlem
Marcus Samuelsson is the acclaimed chef behind many restaurants worldwide including Red Rooster Harlem, MARCUS Montreal, Red Rooster Overtown in Miami, Streetbird at Yankee Stadium and Marcus at Baha Mar Fish + Chop House in the Bahamas. Samuelsson was the youngest person to ever receive a three-star review from The New York Times and has won multiple James Beard Foundation Awards including Best Chef: New York City. He was tasked with planning and executing the Obama Administration’s first State dinner honoring Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Samuelsson was also honored with curating the team of chefs for the 2022 Met Gala menu where he selected the lineup of three women chefs who represented the rich diversity of American cooking. Samuelsson was crowned champion of television shows Top Chef Masters and Chopped All Stars, and was the winning mentor on ABC’s The Taste. He was also newly named Iron Chef on Netflix’s rebooted Iron Chef: Quest for an Iron Legend. Samuelsson received the James Beard Foundation Award for Outstanding Personality for his TV series titled No Passport Required” from Marcussamuelsson.com