The Chefs Collaborative Cookbook

The Chefs Collaborative Cookbook

SKU# 071372

"Many chefs--and their books--pay lip-service to the sustainable ideal. This book does more than that: It offers really wonderful recipes for food that is gorgeous and good for both you and the planet. It’s given me so many great ideas."
- Ruth Reichl, former editor of Gourmet and author of Garlic and Sapphires

Chefs Collaborative


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Other Formats
  • Product # 071372
  • Type Hardcover
  • ISBN 978-1-60085-418-7
  • Published Date 2013
  • Dimensions 9 x 10 1/2
  • Pages 304
  • Photos 55 full color photos

Chosen as one of Food & Wine's best cookbooks of 2013.

Celebrating 20 years of the Chefs Collaborative. Founded in 1993, this national network of 6,000 chefs, food professionals, and producers has been changing the sustainable food landscape. Created when the concept of sustainable food was still a novel idea, this food revolution is celebrated today in The Chefs Collaborative Cookbook.

“Full of crowd-pleasing appetizers, mains and desserts, the lovingly produced collection features elegant gourmet recipes built around sustainable, local and seasonal farm-fresh ingredients.”

“There is no greater joy than sharing food around the table. The Chefs Collaborative Cookbook is filled with sustainable recipes that will enrich your palates and your plates for years to come!”
– Laurie David, Producer, Environmental Activist, and Author of The Family Dinner

“Good food from family farmers feeds us, body and soul. The many delicious meals you will cook from these recipes will add up to big changes for our farmers, our families, our communities, and our planet.”
– Willie Nelson, President and Founder of Farm Aid

“Creative, sustainable, and mouth-watering recipes from some of my favorite chefs, all featuring a bounty of seasonal ingredients. This exciting and beautiful book is a treasure-trove of inspiration and a celebration of cooking with the best of what nature provides.”
– Terry Walters, Author of Clean Food

“The Chefs Collaborative Cookbook" shows us how to think like a sustainably minded chef, with fantastic recipes and tips for making wise choices. Practical information makes it possible to take meaningful steps away from our industrialized food system.”
– Robert Kenner, Director of Food, Inc.

“The Chef's Collaborative Cookbook” brings together the wisdom and experience of incredible chefs and the farmers who grow our food, bringing their wonderful ideas and methods into the home cook’s kitchen. The overall commitment to sustainable methods will help you understand how what you eat doesn’t just impact your health, but the health of the earth as well.”
– Nell Newman, President of Newman’s Own Organics

“Issues like eating locally, the ‘center of the plate’, and sustainability are part of today’s everyday lexicon thanks to Chefs Collaborative. These ideas were far from mainstream in 1993, when the Collaborative was founded. I am sure Chefs Collaborative will be as successful in its next 20 years and at the forefront of tackling important issues that will make a difference to the health of our planet and its people.”
– Sara Baer-Sinnott, President of Oldways

115 original recipes from 115 renowned chefs. This extraordinary cookbook showcases the work of revered chefs from across America, including: John Ash, Nora Pouillon, Bill Telepan, Judi Barsness, Bruce Sherman, Frank Stitt, Monica Pope, Michael Schwartz, among others. Just a taste of the famous chef dishes you can make your own:

  • Watermelon Rind Pickles
  • Asparagus, Spinach and Spring Pea Lasagna
  • Buttermilk Fried Chicken
  • Pork Shoulder and Hominy Stew
  • Carpaccio of Chinook Salmon with Bay Shrimp and Pumpernickel
  • Meyer Lemon Roulade with Huckleberry Compote

Sustainable eating for everyone. The Chefs Collaborative Cookbook translates the concepts of sustainable eating – such as organic, local, seasonal cooking, and celebrating diversity – into language every home cook can easily understand. And recipes almost anyone can make.

Improving the way Americans eat.  This visually beautiful cookbook is just one way the Chefs Collaborative is educating the public. Nothing is as persuasive as cooking delicious food to show America that eating healthy, sustainable food is not only good for us and the environment — it is also pure pleasure.  

About the Author
Ellen Jackson graduated from the New England Culinary Institute and spent 12 years as a pastry chef in some of the best kitchens in Portland, Oregon. After her stint in restaurants, Ellen focused her love of food on writing about it. She is the coauthor of The Grand Central Baking Book, and developed recipes for The Pale’s Place Cookbook and Weber’s Way to Grill. In addition, Ellen is a longtime Slow Food steering committee member and a Portland Farmers Market board member.

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Table of Contents

Chefs Collaborative: The Beginning by John Ash


Chefs Collaborative: 20 Years Later by Michael Leviton

Vegetables, Fruits, and Other Edible Plants

Meats and Poultry

Fish and Seafood

Dairy and Eggs

Afterword: What’s Next

Appendix: Seafood Guide for Wild and Farmed Species


In the summer of 1993, a group of chefs got together on the big island of Hawaii to talk about environmental issues around food production. This began as an Oldways gathering; Oldways, founded by visionary K. Dun Gifford, is probably best known for introducing the Mediterranean Diet and its pyramid back in the early 1990s.

1993 was an interesting time for food in America. The average cost of a loaf of bread was just over $1.50. E.coli and other deadly food-borne illness outbreaks were on the rise, and research on the impact of food processing plants on the United States’ food supply was finally becoming part of the national conversation. The understanding and use of terms like “organic” and “sustainable” were not part of the general conversation, as hard as that might be to imagine today. Topics like GMOs (genetically modified organisms) were unknown or not really understood to any extent by most of us. The National Organic Program administered by the USDA did not become law until December of 2000. Prior to that, “organic” was often seen as something “hippy dippy” and not really a part of mainstream thinking. I was lucky enough to have grown up on a cattle ranch with my grandparents in Colorado; they pounded into me some sense of what it meant to take care of both the animals that we raised and the land that they roamed. Although there were many of us chefs that recognized the importance of creating a sustainable food system and supporting traditional food practices and local suppliers, we didn’t have a unified voice. There was a sense among many chefs around the country that these issues were only things we talked about with our local like-minded growers and suppliers. There was no larger framework or organization that could help us define and spread the word until that serendipitous gathering in Hawaii.

Present at the gathering in Hawaii were a “Who’s Who” of the culinary world at that time and still today. This group included myself, Paul Bartolotta, Catherine Brandel, Rick Bayless, Kathleen Daelemans, Gary Danko, Robert Del Grande, Mark Ellman, Susan Feniger, Amy Ferguson-Ota, Larry Forgione, Joyce Goldstein, Madhur Jaffrey, Jean-Marie Josselin, Mo Kanner, Matthew Kenney, Deborah Madison, Zarela Martinez, Nobu Matsuhisa, George Mavrothalassistis, Peter Merriman, Mark Miller, Mary Sue Milliken, Bradley Ogden, Phillipe Padovani, Nora Pouillon, Michael Romano, Oliver Saucy, Jimmy Schmidt, RoxSand Scocos, Allen Susser, Alan Wong, and Roy Yamaguchi, among others. The day-long conversation focused on many things, but one big topic was the changing role of chefs in the public eye. Though the Food Network was not yet on the air, many chefs in America were being elevated to celebrity status. With that celebrity came the first real understanding that chefs could have an important role in educating not only their restaurant guests and employees but the larger community about food, including influencing food policy. We knew that food-buying decisions chefs made for their restaurants could make an impact locally, but we wanted to do more. Could we apply sustainable and what I call “ethical” food choices collectively and on a national level to make a more dramatic impact? The answer was yes, and the decision was made to create an organization that united chefs in creating what we hoped could be a truly sustainable food landscape.

In 2000, Chefs Collaborative was launched to help bring attention to national and global food issues. The Collaborative was one of the first organizations to become involved in school lunch programs, where member chefs took an active role teaching elementary-school administrators and students principles of sustainable food. Chefs Collaborative has partnered over the years with other stakeholders in the sustainable seafood arena. The first “Seafood Solutions” chefs’ guide was issued by the Collaborative in 2000, aimed at educating and helping chefs to make good buying decisions. Monterey Bay Aquarium, in partnership with Chefs Collaborative, launched its successful Seafood Watch program. These initiatives, along with education forums and communiqués, have helped chefs understand the implications of subjects as diverse as grass-fed vs. natural vs. conventional beef; distribution issues and opportunities for local and regional food systems; and even understand and make sense of eco-labels and green washing practices.

As one of the founding members of Chefs Collaborative, I’ve been impressed at the impact the organization has made over the years. I’ve learned so much from my association, as I know other chefs have, too. While we chose to stay focused on chefs and the community we’re committed to serving, now is the time to broaden our audience. It is the strength of our unified message as chefs that can continue to influence and change our food community for the better.

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