COOKING BY THE BOOK

Written By: Josh Gray | Photography By: Wayne Chinnock

An exclusive look at Cru’s cookbook hitting bookshelves around the country next spring.

Overlooking the harbor on Straight Wharf, Cru Oyster Bar possesses a Gatsby-esque elegance that epitomizes the high-end dining scene on Nantucket. Since opening their restaurant seven years ago, owners Jane Stoddard, Carlos Hidalgo and executive chef Erin Zircher have established Cru as one of the most desirable dining destinations in the world. Much of that success is a credit to their exquisite cuisine, which recently inspired a new chapter in the evolution of this high-end eatery.

The Cru team is now sharing their 
recipes in a new cookbook that will hit
bookstores nationally in the spring of 2019.
The Cru Oyster Bar Nantucket Cookbook: 
Savoring Four Seasons of the Good Life 
features many of the restaurant’s most popular 
dishes and cocktail recipes in a stunning hardcover, coffee-table book published by St. Martin’s Press, a division of Macmillan Publishers, one of the largest publishing houses in the world.

“We thought the cookbook would be a great way to celebrate what Cru has become, which is really a reflection of who our customers are,” say the Cru owners. “It’s a toast to them and a way for people to take a piece of Nantucket home with them when they leave the island.”

With mesmerizing photography by Wayne Chinnock, the cookbook’s chapters are organized by the seasons where readers can find detailed listings on how to recreate their favorite dishes and drinks at home. Among the recipes—which includes Cru’s famous lobster roll— readers also learn the story behind this iconic restaurant and the people who made it possible since the beginning.
“I personally love finding cookbooks that tell the story of a people and a place, and that is our aim with this book,” says Stoddard. “This is really a passion project—something we can share with the whole community, something that hopefully fully represents our Nantucket lifestyle.”

Cru’s cookbook has been years in the making. The idea was first inspired by a conversation with one of Cru’s longtime summer regulars, renowned talent agent Alan Morell. Since then, the project has occupied a large portion of the owners’ off-seasons. “Because of the seasonality of the island and the nature of our business, we hope this book will keep us on people’s minds and in their kitchens throughout the year,” says the Cru team.

In line with the book’s debut next spring, Cru will be hosting special launches in New York and Boston in April and here on island in May centered around the Nantucket Wine & Food Festival, with the possibility of a book tour after the 2019 summer season. Until that time, Chef Erin Zircher gave us just a taste of what’s to come in an exclusive recipe excerpt of their fabled sliced summer tomatoes with green goddess dressing.

SLICED SUMMER TOMATOES WITH GREEN GODDESS DRESSING
Ingredients for the salad:
2 lbs. ripe tomatoes
, 1 pint cherry tomatoes, 
2 scallions, thinly sliced garnish: nasturtium flowers, chervil, or tarragon leaves

GREEN GODDESS DRESSING
1/2 cup fresh cilantro
, 1/4 cup fresh tarragon
, 1/4 cup fresh flat leaf parsley, 1/2 ripe avocado, 
1/3 cup mayonnaise
, 1/2 cup sour cream
, 2 scallions, 
1 garlic clove
, 1/2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

TO MAKE THE DRESSING:
Wash the herbs in a bowl of cool water and pat dry. Roughly chop the herbs and puree them with the remaining ingredients in a blender. Refrigerate until ready to use. The dressing will keep for two days refrigerated but may thicken a bit in the refrigerator. If so, it can be thinned with a little buttermilk or extra lemon juice.

TO MAKE THE SALAD:
Wash and slice the tomatoes and arrange them on a platter. Drizzle with the Green Goddess Dressing. Garnish the salad with the sliced scallions, nasturtium flowers and extra herbs. Finish with a light drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and freshly cracked black pepper.

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