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Monday, June 4, 2012

The rise of the comic cookbook

Amanda Cohens newest venture: a comic cookbook
  • dirtcandynyc.com
  • Amanda Cohen's newest venture: a comic cookbook

There are a few key elements that make a comic book superhero. Most importantly are their superhuman powers. Could that be the reason behind the trend of chefs joining the likes of Wolverine and Spider-Man in comic book form? I mean, they do have incredible tasting abilities and not to mention the capability to create dishes that can recall us to another place and time.

According to chef Chris Cosentino of San Fransico's Incanto:

"Chefs have become culture icons, not unlike comic-book heroes and villains, and food crosses over to everything."

Whatever the reason, there has been a definite trend of chefs crossing into the realm of the superhuman.

Atlanta's own Eli Kirshtein was featured in "Spider-Man: A Meal to Die For" back in February 2011. The comic features Peter Parker taking his date to meet the chef in a high-end New York restaurant, but the date is compromised by Mysterio and Kirshtein joins Spider-Man to save the day.

Chef Chris Cosentino has also become involved with Marvel in creating a comic book featuring Wolverine in the city of San Francisco.

Although the trend's latest addition isn't in super hero form like Kirshtein or Cosentino, Amanda Cohen still decided to relay her life in animation form as well. In her forthcoming book, Dirty Candy: A Cookbook: Flavor-Forward Food from the Upstart New York City Vegetarian Restaurant, Cohen shares her experiences as the owner of Dirty Candy in NYC.

It turns out that animation was more efficient in getting her hectic life across to readers than words and photos. Ryan Dunlavey, the book's artist, depicts Cohen's cartoon-self trying to keep her cool in her daily restaurant life as waiters zip by, customers complain, and cooks get overcrowded. The comic cookbook should be hitting shelves in August 2012.

Anthony Bourdain is next on the list to publish in comic book form. He is co-author in the book Get Jiro! that is set to release July 3, 2012. The comic features a future Los Angeles "where master chefs rule the town like crime lords and people literally kill for a seat at the best restaurants, a bloody culinary war is raging."

Whether it's been a childhood dream or just a way to get experiences across to readers, there has been a definite trend in the duo of comics and cookbooks.

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