alicewaters.jpgAlice Waters is considered by many to be a revolutionary. She opened Chez Panisse in 1971 and began awakening America to the benefits of local, sustainable agriculture by changing her menu according to what was available seasonally. She has taken this charge beyond her restaurant through her books as well as through her Edible Schoolyard program, which enables public school children to explore the connection between what they eat and where it comes from through organic gardening and cooking classes.

Her latest book The Art of Simple Food: Notes, Lessons and Recipes from a Delicious Revolution, encompasses a great deal of Waters' philosophy about food and how to incorporate it into the home cook's kitchen. The book is divided into two sections, the first containing lessons on basics, like how to stock your pantry and your kitchen and how to plan a menu, as well as recipes she considers to be your "foundation," like stocks, homemade pasta, and more. The latter section, Recipes for Cooking Every Day, features recipes in Waters' approachable, simple, and elegant style that focuses on showcasing high quality ingredients. Clarkson Potter, $35.