Off the Menu by Marissa Guggiana

For every dinner service, there is a staff meal, family-style celebrations prepared by chefs for their crew. The meals are never on the menu, but are designed to show appreciation, provide energy for the evening, and more importantly, please even the pickiest palate. Off the Menu brings you behind-the-scenes profiles of the country’s top restaurants, and explore the tradition of the staff meal.

Each night, sous chefs, line cooks, waiters, busboys, dishwashers, and managers all gather to eat, socialize, and plan before opening for business. Ranging from small plates to multi-course extravaganzas, from an inspired use of leftovers or entirely new offerings, the concept is simple: a well-fed staff is a happy one. Guggiana has taken the most remarkable, soulful, and mouthwatering of these dishes and translated them for the home cook. You will find more than 80 recipes from 50 of the nation’s top restaurants. Each entry includes profiles of the restaurants, behind-the-scenes trips to the kitchens, and dining out tips, restaurant tricks, and cooking techniques from the cream of the culinary crop.

Pull back the curtain on the staff meal, and find new, exciting ways to feed your family from the best in the business.