Quite the road trip for Jose Garces

Chef Jose Garces

When he’s not at one of his 15 restaurants scattered across five different cities, Jose Garces can sometimes be found on the set of “Iron Chef America,” scrambling to create a meal out of secret ingredients in “Kitchen Stadium.” But  even though his flagship Amada has been packed since opening in 2005, Garces considers his own kitchen an escape.  

“More so then ever I find cooking a really calming, soothing place to be,” says the Ecuadoran-American chef. “I have that time in the kitchen where I can just relax, I’ll have the game on, a glass of wine — just doing it.”

Like his cooking, Garces’ new cookbook, “The Latin Road Home,” is about more than the food. Part menus, part memoir, it looks at five countries — Ecuador, Spain, Cuba, Mexico and Peru — that have shaped his life, career and approach to the culinary arts. While it’s a journey that tastes pretty well-rounded, it’s clear that there will be a sequel. Even at this stage in the game — he owns seven  restaurants in the city — Garces is still learning, particularly on his Bucks County farm.

“It’s new to me, for sure. I grew up in Chicago, in the city, and so it’s exciting, it’s great to be out there,” he says of Luna Farms. “At home, we plan pretty extensive meals, and since we’ve gotten the farm, we’ve been inspired to use all the fresh vegetables we’re harvesting. When you have that bounty, it forces creativity.”

Chef picks

We asked Garces for some expert advice on dining out in Philly:
   
“Recently I went to Tashan and had a great meal. I recommend the minced Kobe kebab  — it’s delicious. All their breads are really good, too.”
  
“I also recently went to Kanella. They have really fresh Cypriot cuisine. It was really tasty — had that authentic, Mediterranean feel to it.”

Farm fail

It’s not all picturesque produce on Garces’ farm. After attempting to salvage a field of overdue tomatoes, he got a taste of what it’s like to lose to a veggie (welcome to our world, Jose).

“We went up to the farm and we were like, we’re going to lose a lot of tomatoes. So we go through this whole process to decore and skin the tomatoes so we could can them. We had them in a cooler, and then the next day they were bad. So they went back in the compost, which felt OK,” he says.

If you go

“The Latin Road Home” officially hits counter tops Monday. To celebrate, Garces is hosting a dinner Tuesday night at JG Domestic ($125, 2929 Arch St.) featuring dishes from each of the book’s five chapters, along with a signed copy of the book itself.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

FDNY debuts new fire simulator for blazes at…

The New York City Fire Department christened its newest, state-of-the-art, custom-built simulator at its training academy on Randall's Island Tuesday.

Local

Bronx cop saves baby who stopped breathing

A Bronx police officer is credited with saving the life of a 2-month-old baby who stopped breathing Tuesday morning. Police Officer Johnny Castillo, 38, was…

Local

Brewer celebrates Women's Equality Day with voter pledge

Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer celebrated Women’s Equality Day Tuesday by pledging to register at least five women voters before the Oct. 10 deadline. Brewer…

Local

NYPD looking for lewd D train rider

The NYPD is enlisting the public’s help to find a man they say performed a lewd act on the D train Saturday evening. The incident…

Television

'Pretty Little Liars' recap: Season 5, Episode 12,…

If you've wondered whether Ali and Bethany knew each other, you got an answer tonight: Yes, and in a very tangled way. But many lingering…

Entertainment

Cymbals Eat Guitars Have Everything to 'LOSE'

At its most basic level, a rock band can be thought of as a family, a group of people selflessly devoted to a cause. When…

Entertainment

"Bachelor in Paradise" recap: Episode 4, 'Week Four'

Some things are hard to watch in a “Human Centipede” sort of way. Other things in an “American History X” sort of way. Does “Bachelor…

Movies

Fall Movie Preview: 10 films to see this…

Despite being awards season, the next four months bring a glut of remakes, rehashes and sequels. Here are 10 that should be better worth your time.

College

When are 2014 college football playoffs? (Schedule, date,…

When and where are 2014 college football playoffs? A look at the schedule, date, TV, time for the semi-finals at championship game.

NFL

Dimitri Patterson suspended only for rest of preseason…

Dimitri Patterson ended up getting just a slap on the wrist.

Sports

Eugenie Bouchard excited for 'rowdy' fans at US…

Eugenie Bouchard is sure to endear herself to New York's tennis faithful as she tries to win her first grand slam title across the next two weeks.

MLB

MLB Power Rankings: Angels and A's still at…

MLB Power Rankings: Angels and A's still at top, Nationals climb

Wellbeing

Who is having the most orgasms?

  Single lesbians report having orgasms more often than heterosexual women but both gay and straight men still come out on top of the climax…

Home

Jonathan Adler shares his tips for a great…

Jonathan Adler took a break from boogie boarding at his beach house to tell us how to keep that Labor Day party festive.

Travel

Most popular Labor Day weekend destinations

Priceline.com released its Top 20 destinations for the end of summer, including Labor Day weekend. If you’re heading to any of these spots, expect a…

Wellbeing

Working your way to type 2 diabetes: Job…

When it comes to type 2 diabetes, a stressful job can be as risky for your health as a bad diet and no exercise. A…