April 8, 2024

“Cook Across America” Book Launch: A Journey Through American Kitchens

What do Americans really eat? To answer this, food blogger Gabrielle Frankemölle and journalist Petrina Engelke embarked on an extensive journey across the United States. Their adventures and discoveries are beautifully documented in their latest cookbook, "Cook Across America", where they reveal 66 authentic recipes from the iconic Route 66. Complemented by insightful interviews and engaging stories, this cookbook offers a comprehensive glimpse into the rich diversity of America's culinary scene.

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Germany welcomes the first cookbook dedicated to the iconic Route 66, titled “Cook Across America”. This book brings together 66 authentic recipes from across the United States, alongside interviews with culinary experts and insights into American cooking traditions. Authored by Gabriele Frankemölle, a seasoned food blogger, and Petrina Engelke, a journalist based in the USA, this publication offers a unique journey through the culinary landscape of the United States.

A Culinary Road Trip from Chicago to Los Angeles

“Cook Across America” is not just a cookbook; it’s a voyage from Chicago to Los Angeles, following the historic Route 66. This path is not only about the destinations but also about the stories and people behind the dishes that define American cuisine. Readers can expect to find a variety of dishes, from Chicago’s Deep Dish Pizza and Texas Cowboy Cookies to Bierocks from Kansas and California’s Avocado Toast. 

Meet the Makers Behind the Meals

The book goes beyond recipes to offer “Meet the Makers” segments, providing valuable insights into the lives of those shaping American cuisine. Interviews with experts, including a Navajo food podcaster discussing the New Native American Cuisine and Illinois farmers talking about maple syrup production and climate change, enrich the reader’s understanding of the current trends and traditional practices in the US food scene.

Blending Nostalgia with Contemporary Trends

“Cook Across America” bridges the gap between the nostalgic allure associated with Route 66 and the contemporary culinary movements sweeping the nation. From diner classics like Meatloaf and Lemonade to modern twists such as vegan hotdogs and spicy Salmon Bowls, the book offers a rich tapestry of American food culture.

To give you a little preview into the cookbook and the flavors that define American cuisine from coast to coast, here are three recipes that showcase the diversity and innovation of America’s culinary traditions.

Avocado Toasts Four Ways

Putting mashed or sliced avocado on bread is such an unspectacular idea that for decades nobody thought to write down a recipe for it. Or even put it on a restaurant menu. That all changed in the 1990s when Bill Granger presented a jazzed-up avocado toast version in his café in Melbourne, Australia. Ten years later, avocado toast was discovered by celebrities and food bloggers in California – after all, these slices are extremely photogenic when beautifully decorated. With four delightful variations, the book redefines this modern classic, showcasing the versatility and rich flavors of the fatty fruit.

Salmon with Pecan Crust

This fish dish falls into the “show-off cuisine” category: A fresh slice of Alaska Salmon, encrusted with a mix of spicy American Pecans and California Almonds, presents a dish that’s as visually stunning as it is simple to prepare. The contrast of textures and the rich flavors make this dish a testament to the creativity and richness of American cuisine. It’s perfect for impressing guests or treating yourself to a gourmet meal at home.

Fruity Rice Salad

Embracing the meal prep trend, which echoes the time-honored practice of cooking in bulk or repurposing leftovers, this salad is a testament to efficiency and flavor.

By incorporating a mix of white and wild U.S. Rice, which can also be leftovers from the day before, it lays a versatile foundation. The addition of sugar snap peas and ripe peaches adds a fresh, sweet crunch, while peppery arugula and tangy feta cheese add complex flavors. The dish is tossed with a homemade dressing, a blend of olive oil, red balsamic vinegar and a hint of sweet mustard. Perfect for eating on the go, this salad is easily packed in glass jars for a convenient, healthy option.

About the Authors and Publisher

Gabriele Frankemölle, with 25 years of blogging experience at usa-kulinarisch.de, brings her extensive knowledge of recipes and travel anecdotes. Petrina Engelke, who has been a freelance journalist in the USA since 2010, adds depth with her interviews and features on American food culture and production. Published by Christian Verlag, a prestigious German publisher for over 30 years, known for its high-quality books on cooking, gardening, living, and lifestyle, “Cook Across America” is set to become a cherished addition to any culinary enthusiast’s collection.

Embark on a delicious journey through the heart of America with “Cook Across America” – a book that promises to bring the vibrant flavors and stories of the Route 66 into your home.