Best of the Besh

November 11, 2015
By: Karen , Tasting Table

John Besh's 2009 cookbook, My New Orleans, was a deep dive into his hometown's rich food culture and history. It's a hefty work, weighing in at a whopping 384 pages and 200-plus nuanced, technique-driven recipes.

The chef's latest cookbook about the city where he now has 10 restaurants, Besh Big Easy ($25), focuses instead on the more comforting but still very NOLA-specific dishes he likes to cook at home.

"My New Orleans is a great book, but it was written at a time when I wanted to prove to the world that you could put 340 ingredients into a single dish," Besh says as he slices bananas for a boozy bananas Foster (see the recipe). "This new book is pared down to the simplicity my grandmother cooked with: There aren't highfalutin spices. It's really salt, pepper and a lot of love."