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Chicago-Based Chef Iliana Regan Lands Two-Book Deal

Plus, new releases from Carla Hall and James Oseland

Chef Iliana Regan
Iliana Regan
Jeff Marini/Elizabeth Restaurant

Chicago-based chef Iliana Regan, who owns the Michelin-starred fine-dining restaurant Elizabeth as well as a new pub called Kitsune, will be writing two books in the next two years. The first, set to hit bookstores in 2018, is a memoir called Burn the Place. According to Publishers’ Marketplace (subscription required) the book will be about “her life growing up in working-class Northwest Indiana, recovering from alcoholism, and pursuing her career as an untrained gay female aspiring chef.” The second is a cookbook called Elizabeth: A Study of the Farm, Field, and Forest. It’s described as “a large-format cookbook with recipes and photos by the author, showing how she develops the foraging-based seasonal menus at her acclaimed restaurant.” It will be published in 2019. Regan told Eater Chicago that her memoir “will really hit home for people who have things they have longed for and always wanted to do but thought they couldn’t. Maybe they will find they don’t have to wait for anyone’s permission to get whatever they want.”

• Former editor of Saveur magazine and frequent Top Chef Masters judge James Oseland has signed on to write a new series of books that combine food and travel. World Foods will explore “the cuisine of a specific region: its restaurants and street-food cultures, markets and food stores, chefs and home cooks,” according to Publishers’ Marketplace. The first two books will cover Paris and Mexico City and will land on shelves in the fall of 2018.

La Cocina, a non-profit culinary incubator aimed at low-income food producers, has scored a cookbook. The La Cocina Cookbook: Voices from the Nation's Most Inclusive Kitchen will be written by the company’s directors, Leticia Landa and Caleb Zigas. The book, which does not yet have a target release date, will include “personal stories and traditional recipes from graduates and participants,” including Veronica Salazar of El Huarache Loco; Binita Pradhan of Bini’s Kitchen, Nite Yun of pop-up Nyum Bai, and Fernay McPherson of pop-up Minnie Bell’s. Chef, restaurateur, and writer Gabrielle Hamilton of Prune in NYC will write the book’s foreword.

The Chew’s Carla Hall, who is the chef and owner of Brooklyn’s Southern Kitchen, will write Carla Hall’s Soul Food Revolution: Fresher, Lighter (and Crazy Good as Ever). It’s described as “an exploration of soul food’s storied history” and promises to bring “this beloved cuisine fully into the contemporary culinary moment.” The book does not have a release date.

• Finally, one other new book deal caught our eye: Restauratrice: How Patricia Murphy Became a Real-Life Mildred Pierce, by Marcia Biederman, a long-time NYT contributor. The biography tells the little-known tale of restaurateur Patricia Murphy and how she “invested her last $60 in a desperate gamble” shortly after the Wall Street crash of 1929. That $60 launched a career that would involve a restaurant chain called Patricia Murphy Candlelight, which had locations in New York and Florida in the mid-1950s. But as the book announcement notes, her business ultimately “tore her family apart.”

All Cookbook Coverage [E]