"Sumptuous Santa Barbara" is a cookbook with everything--gorgeous photographs of that pretty coastal city, an introduction by Julia Child, great recipes and an important cause.
The book is a fund-raiser for Devereux Santa Barbara, a care facility for developmentally disabled children and adults. There are about 230 full-time residents, some living on the 33-acre campus, some in off-campus group homes. Conditions dealt with include autism, mental retardation and emotional disturbances.
Devereux has been providing care for 50 years. In honor of that anniversary, a cookbook committee set to work gathering recipes from leading Santa Barbara restaurants, caterers and cooking teachers.
Although mainly for cooks, the book also functions as a dining-out guide, inasmuch as it covers almost three dozen Santa Barbara-area restaurants from Los Olivos to Summerland. A brief description of each place accompanies the recipes, and there's an alphabetical listing with addresses and phone numbers.
Child, a part-time resident of the area, notes in her introduction that talented chefs have been drawn there by its abundant fresh ingredients, world-class wines and natural beauty.
Contributors include such Santa Barbara institutions as El Encanto, El Paseo, Downey's, Harry's Plaza Cafe, La Tolteca Mexicatessen and La Super-Rica. AMong the others are Citronelle, Chad's, Pane e Vino, Andria's Harborside, the Wine Cask, Brigitte's and the Stonehouse restaurant at San Ysidro Ranch.
Recipes range from Cold Spring Tavern's sauteed medallions of rabbit with wild mushrooms and Chardonnay to spicy black bean stew from Sojourner Cafe. They've been tested by committee members and put in good order by a food professional and are easy to work with.
The book is $17.95, plus $3 per copy for shipping and $1.39 sales tax for California residents, making a total of $22.34. Make checks payable to Devereux and send to Devereux, P.O. Box 1079, Santa Barbara, CA 93102, attention: Cookbook.
TOMATO PESTO SOUP
It's the season for fresh basil, which you'll want for the pesto and as the garnish of this lively soup from Palazzio restaurant in Montecito.
1 1/2 pounds Roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
1/2 cup chopped shallots
1/4 cup olive oil
1 cup tomato juice
1/4 cup chopped garlic
1/2 cup homemade or purchased pesto
2 cups whipping cream
Fresh basil leaves
Cook tomatoes and shallots in olive oil in medium saucepan about 10 minutes. Add tomato juice and garlic and simmer 20 minutes. Cool slightly and puree in food processor. Strain and return to pan.
Add pesto and cook over medium heat about 5 minutes. Stir in whipping cream, season with salt and white pepper to taste and heat through. Serve hot, garnished with basil leaves and dollop of sour cream. To serve cold, refrigerate after adding whipping cream.
Makes 6 to 8 servings.
Each of 6 servings, without sour cream, contains about:
563 calories; 137 mg sodium; 110 mg cholesterol; 57 grams fat; 13 grams carbohydrates; 4 grams protein; 1.07 grams fiber.
CANNELLINI BEANS WITH TOMATO SAUCE AND SAUSAGES (Fagioli all'Uccelletto con Salciccie)
Beppe Berti, chef-owner of Alfresco Trattoria in Santa Barbara, is from Florence, Italy. This hearty bean dish comes from that region.
4 cups dried cannellini beans
1/2 cup olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1 sprig fresh sage
1 (14-ounce) can chopped Italian tomatoes, undrained
Freshly ground pepper
8 mild Italian sausages
1/2 cup white wine
Soak beans overnight. Cook in large pot of salted water 2 hours.
Heat oil in Dutch oven, add garlic and saute to flavor oil. Discard garlic. Add drained beans, sage and tomatoes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, then simmer 20 minutes, or until sauce is thick, adding water if needed.
Meanwhile, cut sausages crosswise in 1/2-inch slices. Saute sausage in dry skillet until partly cooked, about 10 minutes. Discard drippings and clean pan. Return sausage to pan with white wine. Cook until liquid is reduced by half, about 5 minutes, and serve over beans.
Makes 8 servings.
Each serving contains about:
666 calories; 676 mg sodium; 46 mg cholesterol; 30 grams fat; 64 grams carbohydrates; 36 grams protein; 6.28 grams fiber.
ROASTED CHICKEN WITH KALAMATA OLIVES, ONIONS AND MUSHROOMS
Kalamata olives and fresh thyme give a Mediterranean twist to chicken and mushrooms. The recipe is from Mimosa restaurant in Santa Barbara.
6 chicken pieces (2 breast halves with wings attached, 2 drumsticks and 2 thighs)
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon oil
10 ounces white mushrooms, halved
24 Kalamata olives, pitted
1 onion, diced
3/4 cup white wine
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
Season chicken with salt and pepper. Heat oil in large skillet and brown chicken well on all sides. Remove chicken to roasting pan. Roast at 450 degrees 20 minutes.
In same skillet, combine mushrooms, olives, onion and wine. Simmer until liquid is reduced by half. Add thyme. Add mushroom mixture to roasting pan.
Rearrange chicken on top of mushrooms and return to oven to bake until chicken is tender, about 10 minutes longer.
Makes 4 servings.
Each serving contains about:
429 calories; 1,358 mg sodium; 121 mg cholesterol; 27 grams fat; 7 grams carbohydrates; 34 grams protein; 1.08 grams fiber.