After months and months of hard work--editing, proofing, nit-picking, fact-checking, organizing and all that lovely stuff that goes behind the scenes of finalizing a book manuscript and getting it to the printer on time--the cookbook is finally out. I recently picked up my very own copy of Taste of Maui (Mutual Publishing, Oct 2008, $18.95) from the Pā`ina building at Maui Community College, home of the Maui Culinary Academy. At 208-pages, this hardcover spiral-bound cookbook is a beauty. Not quite coffee table tome, but something to keep and use over and over until lovingly worn. Food enthusiasts and home cooks will like the gourmet island recipes and colorful artwork and photographs. But for me, as a long-time writer/editor, the best part with completing projects like this is simply seeing and holding the finished product in hand. Sweet! Nothing beats that feeling....
Wanna know what it's about? Well, here's the cover copy, straight from the source:
Taste of Maui
Favorite Recipes from the Maui Culinary Academy
Here are recipes to satisfy palates from the simple to the most sophisticated while showing off the innovative, island-style cooking coming out of the Maui Culinary Academy. Written by the chefs who teach chefs, Taste of Maui features over 100 island-style recipes that make incredible meals. The book will also teach you new techniques and help enhance your culinary skills. From island-style pantry staples to elegant party pūpū, from sophisticated entrees to scrumptious desserts, these recipes will please home cooks and food enthusiasts. With an emphasis on Maui’s renowned farm-fresh produce and products, the recipes are perfect for a backyard lū`au, a sit-down dinner party, or an island-style family meal. Food photography by Steve Brinkman and art by Ed Lane make A Taste of Maui colorful as well as a recipe treasure.
The Maui Culinary Academy at Maui Community College has trained the island’s chefs for over 30 years. Its state-of-the-art Pā`ina Culinary Arts Center has set the standard for quality culinary training in Hawai`i. The program has been recognized for leading local efforts in sustainable living and dining, and its deep ties to the Maui community makes the Academy the centerpiece for the island’s vibrant food culture. For more information on the program, visit us at www.mauiculinary.com.
During the time I worked on the manuscript, I always ended up so hungry -- that's what happens when you read and edit recipes all day! (To wit: Rock Shrimp Martini, Kabocha Pumpkin and Toasted Rice Bisque, Coconut Macadamia Nut Crusted Catch, Miso-Sake Braised Pork Belly, Lemongrass Creme Brulee, Pineapple Fritters with Roselani Mango 'n Cream Ice Cream and Coconut Tuiles... oh, yum!) So if you're curious to see what Maui's chef-instructors are up to, what previous MCA graduates are making (chef James McDonald of Pacific'O and I'o has some memorable recipes), and what future chefs are learning at the Academy, pick up a copy of Taste of Maui at any Hawai'i Barnes and Noble or Borders bookstore, or swing by the college, or call 808-984-3225 for more info. Sales of the cookbook will benefit the Maui Culinary Academy, so it's all good (and tasty).
So there. Done. Now on to my next book project!