Presented in partnership with Calvary Presbyterian San Francisco.
Please note the venue has changed to Calvary Presbyterian at 2515 Fillmore St, San Francisco. It was previously Book Passage Corte Madera.
Big Heart Little Stove is your new go-to inspiration for cooking thoughtful and meaningful, yet refreshingly simple meals. With more than 75 recipes and her favorite hospitality “signatures,” Erin French—author of The Lost Kitchen cookbook and the New York Times-bestselling memoir Finding Freedom—invites readers to bring a piece of her beloved restaurant, The Lost Kitchen, home with them.
With dishes pulled from French’s family recipe box and the menu at The Lost Kitchen, ranging from irresistible nibbles like Pecorino Puffs and Gram’s Clam Dip; to luscious soups like Golden Tomato & Peach and Potato & Lentil with Bacon and Herbs; to heaping platters of family-style salads and sides like Peach & Blackberry Salad and Green Beans with Sage, Garlic, and Breadcrumbs; to show-stopping main courses like Pickle-Brined Roast Chicken and Wednesday Night Fish Fry; to French’s favorite all-purpose kitchen staples like Kitchen Sink Pesto and Floral Vinegar, this cookbook has all the tools you need for assembling a seamlessly special meal.
To round things out, there are beverages to sip as dinner comes off the stove (Fresh Fruit Shrubs, Slush Puppies) and desserts to make your guests feel truly looked after (Salted Caramel Custards, Roasted Peach Pie with Almond and Fennel). And because weekend mornings deserve celebrating too, there are feel-good treats like Sunday Skillet Cakes and Little Nutmeg Diner Donuts.
Regardless of whether it’s a dressed-up affair or a quick weeknight meal, French’s recommendations are the same: Start with the best ingredients you can find, keep it simple, and serve with love.
But Big Heart Little Stove is more than just a cookbook. With tips and tricks French has used in her own dining room—at home and in the restaurant—this book is your invitation to use what’s around you to create meaningful moments, from setting a table with found treasures, to adorning dishes with edible flowers, to thoughtful gestures such as offering a cold cloth on a hot day. Full of warmth and spirit, Big Heart Little Stove will show you how to create more joy and connection around your table.
Erin French is the owner and chef of The Lost Kitchen, a 40-seat restaurant in Freedom, Maine, that was recently named one of TIME Magazine’s World’s Greatest Places and one of "12 Restaurants Worth Traveling Across the World to Experience" by Bloomberg. She is the author of the New York Times bestselling memoir, Finding Freedom, and features in Magnolia Network’s The Lost Kitchen. A born-and-raised native of Maine, she learned early the simple pleasures of thoughtful food and the importance of gathering for a meal. Her love of sharing Maine and its delicious heritage with curious dinner guests and new friends alike has been lauded by such outlets such as The New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, NPR’s All Things Considered, The Chew, CBS This Morning, The Today Show, Wall Street Journal, Boston Globe, and Food & Wine.
Luisa Smith is the Buying Director of Book Passage, where she has worked for over 25 years, and Editor in Chief of Penzler Publishers which includes the literary mystery imprint Mysterious Press and the psychological suspense imprint Scarlet, as well as American Mystery Classics and Crime Ink. She grew up surrounded by books as her father is the bestselling author, Martin Cruz Smith. A childhood filled with books has resulted in a lifelong love of every aspect of the world of books, but the mystery genre holds a particularly special place in her heart.
Erin French photo courtesy of Greta Rybus.