Restaurateur Elizabeth Blau has been working on a passion project for three and a half years, which is finally coming to fruition. “It’s a labor of love,” she said.
Blau, with restaurants in Pennsylvania, Vancouver and Las Vegas, including Andiron Steak & Sea in Downtown Summerlin, Honey Salt in Rampart Commons and Buddy V’s Ristorante at the Grand Canal Shoppes, has worked in the industry for more than 30 years. She’s been a scrapbooker even longer — since high school. Those two passions converge in “Honey Salt Food and Drink: A Culinary Scrapbook,” written with her husband, chef Kim Canteenwalla.
The couple with a long-standing interest in cookbooks has a collection that spans more than 1,000 titles.
“We’re always buying and looking and reading,” she said.
The avid chronicler of family events puts together mini-books for those attending, and has created more than 40 scrapbooks.
“The idea to make ‘Honey Salt’ a cooking scrapbook came out of that,” she said. “It came together quite organically.”
Their Las Vegas Honey Salt farm-to-table restaurant is in its sixth year; an offshoot in Vancouver, British Columbia, opened this fall.
The book will chronicle the making of the restaurant and what inspired it, and will reflect how they cook at home and on vacation, Blau said. A “Journeys” section will cover favorite vacation destinations including Tuscany and Cape Cod.
Each family member will have a section: Blau’s will focus on entertaining and Canteenwalla’s will concentrate on grilling. Their 13-year old son, Cole, whose “Cole’s Corner” for kids has been a fixture of the Honey Salt menu, also will have a section.
The book will highlight the family’s interests, such as in a section titled, “We love cheese.” It lists more than 100 cheeses, categorized by whether they’re made with cow’s milk or buffalo, goat’s or sheep’s milk, with country of origin and flavor profile. That section will have tips for composing a cheese plate, including how to properly slice cheeses of different shapes, what else should be on the platter and how much to serve per person.
Also included will be information on their favorite purveyors and how to make cocktails. Recipes listed will have space to add notes.
They are publishing the 296-page book themselves and having it printed and bound in Italy. Blau said they would like to use pulp from bamboo or another material that’s not wood. They’re hoping for a summer release.