There are cooks who write and writers who cook; the genius of Alison Roman's cookbook is that she's one of the few that genuinely, wholly occupies both spaces. After years honing her culinary skills in fine dining kitchens (including dessert-maverick Momofoku Milk Bar and San Francisco's vegetable-filled Quince), she worked as an editor at Bon Appétit and BuzzFeed. Her first cookbook, Dining In, reflects both of these sensibilities. It's filled with surprising food that plays with flavor profiles and textures (in one dish, raw and roasted carrots come together with fennel and pistachios for a dish that's simultaneously warm and cold, crunchy and sweetly smooth, familiar and exciting), but it also has the type of cooking-school expertise turned into bite-size, digestible information that years on an editorial team provides. You'll learn new techniques (slow-roasting in olive oil) and chef's tricks that'll impress anyone you have over for dinner (how to actually cook an eggplant properly, why toasting nuts actually matters).
While technically a cookbook for omnivores, Dining In is very much a reflection of how we eat now, meaning vegetable-heavy dishes occupy a central portion of the text. Here are a few of our favorite recipes.