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OP: Dirt Candy (signed)

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by Amanda Cohen

Amanda Cohen, chef and owner of Lower East Side restaurant Dirt Candy, has been leading the pack on just about every major trend in the NYC restaurant scene.  That is not to say that her work is gimmicky or opportunistic, rather, it is to say that she has always had her finger on the pulse.

The vegetarian restaurant first opened as an 18 seat hole in the wall, which received some of the industry’s most coveted accolades, such as two New York Times stars. And after moving to a bigger space and implementing a tasting menu format, the 15-year-old restaurant has (finally) received a Michelin star.

Rebuffing the notion that vegetarian food has to be inherently healthy, bland, or boring, Cohen’s menu centers vegetables in creative and flavorful ways that has us wondering why it’s taking other restaurants so long to catch up.

Dirt Candy, the cookbook, debuted in 2012. Designed as a graphic novel, it is, therefore, a visually arresting and engaging book.  While you can certainly cook the recipes, the story of what it’s like to be a NYC restaurant chef is the real hook.  If you love the restaurant, you will love the equally iconoclastic book.

Ours is a Near Fine copy signed by Amanda Cohen, paperback, as all printings are.  This copy also comes with a bonus staplebound booklet made for the restaurant’s tenth anniversary, illustrated in full color.

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