Chef Russell Cronkhite
For today's families who wish to strengthen bonds, nurture children, or reach out in their communities, Russell Cronkhite's A Return to Sunday Dinner is more than just a mouthwatering cookbook. Cronkhite restores Sunday dinner's place as a time of delicious fellowship and meaningful celebration.
As former executive chef of Blair House-the presidential guest house-Cronkhite has served three U.S. presidents and nearly every major world leader. A Return to Sunday Dinner includes twenty-one complete menus, with over 120 recipes, that highlight regional influences on cookery and explore the rich spiritual heritage of the American family.
Each menu features the beloved dishes of a particular American culture, introduced with nostalgic and informative reflections by the author. Themes include "Return to the Heartland," "A Quiet Sunday with Friends," "A Sunday for Thanksgiving," "Harvest of the Lakes," "At Home in New England," "Mountain's Majesty," "Agape: A Love Feast," "God's Country: Sunday in the Northwest," and "Southern Traditions"-celebrating Pennsylvania Dutch, Italian, German, Scandinavian, Cajun, Irish, Mediterranean, Southwestern, and many other varieties of cuisine.
Russell Cronkhite is an accomplished chef, pastry chef and baker. He began his culinary career more than thirty years ago working and training among some of the best establishments throughout West Los Angeles, California.
In 1987, Russell was chosen from a distinguished field of noted American chefs to head the kitchens of Blair House, the guest house of the president of the United States. Through his remarkable twelve-year "tour of duty" as Blair House executive chef, he served three presidents, four secretaries of state, and six chiefs of protocol.
Nearly every major world leader of this generation visited Blair House, including Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Nelson Mandela, Boris Yeltsin, Benazir Bhutto, Israeli Prime Minister Itzak Rabin, Jordan's King Hussein, Vaclav Havel, The Emperor and Empress of Japan, Lech Walesa, Margaret Thatcher, Francois Mitterrand, Hosni Mubarak, and Chinese President Jiang Zemin.
Chef Cronkhite has spoken often on culture, cuisine, and protocol and in 1994 he was invited to be the featured commencement speaker for the New England Culinary Institute. A frequent contributor to the Washington Post, his work has also appeared in Bon Appétit and Weber's Big Book of Grilling. He is currently a member of the culinary advisory board for the Art Institute of Washington.