[Photograph: Evan Sung]

Cookfight is more than a cookbook. It is a dialogue between two New York Times writers, Kim Severson and Julia Moskin, brought together by a culinary challenge. Restaurant critic Frank Bruni had them go head-to-head in battle; what started as two competing dinners judged by Bruni turned into a year-long effort, every month posing its own challenge.

The recipes in Cookfight are good in their own right, but what sticks with the reader is the back-and-forth between Kim and Julia. Their distinct personalities come across in the execution of their food; Kim takes a more flourished path, and Julia, more restrained and elegant. It isn't two books in one—it's a collaborative effort between two clever people, both of whom have risen to the occasion.

As this is Bake the Book, we've selected several sweets amid the food playground. First is Coffee Can Date-Nut Bread, a family tradition remembered from Kim Severson's college days. Several more, including a Serious Eats-developed recipe for candied cherry tomatoes are in store. The book might be based on battle, but everything we've seen is a winner.

Win A Copy!

Thanks to the generous folks over at HarperCollins, we are giving away five (5) copies of Cookfight this week.

All you have to do is name a recipe of yours that you think would win in a culinary battle in the comments section below.

The standard Serious Eats contest rules apply.


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