East Bay Cooks by Carolyn Jung

About the Author:

Carolyn Jung is a James Beard Award–winning food writer and blogger based in the San Francisco Bay Area. For more than a decade, she was the senior food writer at the San Jose Mercury News. As a freelance writer, her work has appeared in local, national, and international publications, including the San Francisco Chronicle, Silicon Valley Maga-zine, San Francisco Magazine, EatingWell, Edible: Marin & Wine Country, Via Magazine, Plate, Rachael Ray Every Day, Wine Spectator, Oakland Magazine, and Coastal Living. She regularly hosts chef demos in Yosemite as well as Macy’s department stores in the Bay Area. She is the creator of the blog  FoodGal.com and the author of San Francisco Chef’s Table. She wholeheartedly believes that any day is made better with a great cookie or pastry.

Book Description

The East Bay has always remained true to itself. It includes
Oakland, the most ethnically diverse population in the nation; Berkeley,
the birthplace of the Free Speech Movement; the island of Alameda, with
its artisan breweries, wineries, and distilleries; and the Livermore
Valley, one of California’s oldest winemaking regions.

East Bay Cooks is an impressive collection of eighty
signature dishes from forty of the city’s leading restaurants. It’s a
region that’s got you covered, no matter what the craving. An
uncomplicated taco with the power to stir the soul? A nourishing bowl of
authentic Singaporean laksa? Shrimp and grits with layers of flavors
never imagined? It’s all here, and designed with home cooks in mind, so
that re-creating signature dishes from the area’s favorite chefs has
never been easier.

Huế  Dumplings

Tay Ho Oakland

Denise Huynh, owner

Anna Ho, chef

These dumplings have a magical quality about them—after being boiled, they are immediately dunked into cold water, turning them translucent. Made with gluten-free tapioca flour from the cassava plant, the wrappers give these dumplings a unique, almost gummy bear–like chewy texture. Tapioca flour is commonly sold at Asian markets.

Denise Huynh knows all about spirit-crushing work, having grown up with parents who fled Vietnam with only $500 in their pockets to settle in Oakland, where their first jobs were cleaning bathrooms at a Jack in the Box. Even so, Huynh had no idea what she was in for when she decided to take over a Vietnamese restaurant in Oakland from her aunt.

Chorizo Sourdough Toast

Like a Spanish version of avocado toast, this simple tapa is just the ticket to get any party started. It’s amped up with your choice of Spanish chorizo or morcilla (Spanish blood sausage), both of which are cured. If you don’t want to seek out quail eggs, use chicken eggs instead and swap the baguette for larger-sized slices of ciabatta or levain.

Recipe from Sabio on Main

Francis X. Hogan, executive chef and co-owner

Rib-Eye Steak, Smashed Herbed Potatoes, Chimichurri, and Charred Scallions

For this statement-making meat and potatoes dish, Chef Mike Ward recommends air-drying the rib eyes in the refrigerator for three days before cooking. Their color will turn a deeper, darker red, and they will cook up incredibly caramelized. The chef also recommends pairing this dish with Wente Vineyards Nth Degree Cabernet Sauvignon, known for its bold tannins and notes of blackberry and toasted oak.

Recipe from The Restaurant at Wente Vineyards/Chef Mike Ward

Steak 2 (20-oz) bone-in rib-eye steaks

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Herbed potatoes 

5 lbs fingerling potatoes

2 Tbsp kosher salt, plus extra to taste

1/4 cup fennel seeds

1/4 cup mustard seeds

1/4 cup black peppercorns
1 Tbsp crushed cardamom
10 sprigs thyme

10 sprigs flat-leaf parsley

8 sprigs rosemary

7 sprigs sage

6 bay leaves

1/4 cup packed brown sugar

2 to 6 Tbsp canola oil

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1/4 cup parmesan cheese
2 Tbsp chopped flat-leaf

Place rib eyes, uncovered, in the refrigerator for 3 days, flipping them over every 12 hours. When ready to cook, bring them to room temperature. 

Herbed potatoes

Put potatoes in a stockpot of salted water. Put all the herbs and spices into a muslin sachet and add it to the pot. (Alternatively, add directly into the pot.) Stir in brown sugar, bring to a boil, and cook potatoes for 20 minutes, or until tender. Drain. (If you didn’t use a sachet, rinse potatoes to remove any herb and spice remnants.) Dry potatoes completely. Using the bottom of a heavy pan, press down on potatoes to smash them slightly. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Add potatoes in a single layer, working in batches, if necessary, to avoid overcrowding. Sear for 2 to 3 minutes. Flip them over and sear for another 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer potatoes to a plate. Repeat with remaining potatoes. Season with salt and pepper, Parmesan,and parsley.


Put all ingredients in a blender and blend until combined but still chunky. Adjust salt to taste. Transfer to a serving bowl.


8 scallions, outer layer peeled

Extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat a grill to 450ºF for direct heat. Generously season both sides of each steak with salt and pepper. Place rib eyes on the grill and cook for 4 to 5 minutes. Flip over and cook for another 4 to 5 minutes for medium rare. Remove from grill and set aside to rest for 5 minutes before slicing against the grain.Brush scallions with a little oil, then season with salt and pepper. Grill for 2 to 3 minutes, until charred. Place the potatoes on a large platter. Fan slices of rib eye on top. Drizzle meat with chimichurri and garnish with charred scallions. Serve family-style, passing extra chimichurri at the table.

Hazelnut Cake with Pear-Ginger Compote

Pastry chef Ariana Goldschneider’s incredibly moist vegan cake is a sweet taste of autumn. 


1 Tbsp plus 1 1/4 ts active dry yeast

2 cups granulated sugar (divided)

3 cups all-purpose flour, sifted1 1/2 cups pasy flour, sifted

2 cups blanched hazelnuts, toasted and ground

1/4 cup plus 1 Tbsp egreplacer

2 tsp baking powder1 tsp salt

2 cups grapeseed oil, plus extra for greasing

1 cup rice milk

Cake - In a small bowl, blend together yeast, 1 tablespoon sugar, and  cup water. Leave in a warm place until foamy. Set aside. In a large bowl, combine remaining sugar, flours, ground hazelnuts, egg replacer, baking powder, and salt. In another bowl, combine oil, rice milk, and yeast mixture and whisk. Add the liquid mixture to the dry ingredients, mixing until just combined. Set aside in a warm place for 1 hour to rise. Lightly grease a 12-inch square or 9- × 13-inch cake pan. Transfer batter to pan and set aside to rise for another 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Bake cake for 25 to 30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Transfer to a cooling rack and set aside.

Pear-ginger compote

1 Tbsp palm shortening or coconut oil

1 cup granulated sugar

4 to 6 large Bosc pears, peeled, cored, and each cut into 8 wedges

1/2 cup white wine

1 Tbsp finely grated ginger

2 tsp vanilla extract

Pomegranate seeds, for garnish (optional)

Oven-dried pear slices, for garnish (optional)

Pear-ginger compote

Melt shortening (or heat oil) in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add sugar, increase to high heat, and cook until sugar turns slightly brown. Remove from heat, then place pear wedges in a single layer in frying pan. Return to heat and cook for 2 minutes, until wedges are evenly caramelized. Using kitchen tongs, flip and caramelize the other sides. Add wine, ginger, and vanilla. Cover, reduce heat to low, and cook for 15 minutes, until pears are soft. Serve slices of cake with the pear-ginger compote and, if using, a sprinkle of pomegranate seeds and a few oven-dried pear slices.

East Bay Cooks is an impressive collection of eighty signature dishes from forty of the city’s leading restaurants with 208 pages.  The hard cover will be published on September 10, 2019.

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Copyright © 2019 by Carolyn Jung

Recipes copyright © 2019 by individual restaurants

Recipes are chef tested.
All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without the prior written consent of the publisher or a license from the Canadian Copyright Licensing Agency (Access Copyright). For a copyright license, visit www.accesscopyright.ca or call toll-free to 1-800-893-5777.