Top chefs and cookbooks land on Epicurious.com

Hundreds of recipes from the world's top chefs and cookbook authors will soon be available on the food site Epicurious.com.

A partnership between the Conde Nast-owned Web site and publishing giant Random House has brought more than 100 recipes from chefs including Lidia Bastianich, Jacques Pepin, Joan Nathan, Jean-Georges Vongerichten and Joel Robouchon to the Web.

At least 200 recipes will be posted by the end of 2009, said Epicurious.com Editor-in-Chief Tanya Wenman Steel. Hundreds more will be added to the site's 140,000-recipe database each year.

"The people who come to Epicurious want to know how to make a roast chicken, but also a tom kha chicken soup," Steel said. "So we're trying to get a good mix of cuisines and skill levels for our users."

The sneak-peek at upcoming cookbooks will also allow consumers to test-drive recipes before investing in the whole volume. Satisfied cooks will be able to click from the recipe directly to online retailers to purchase the book.

Roughly 80 percent of Epicurious recipes come from the site's users and from Epicurious recipe developers, Steel said, and the balance come from Conde Nast publications such as Bon Appetit and Gourmet, which closed earlier this month.

Steel said the Random House deal has been in progress since early 2009, but that it will help fill any gaps left by Gourmet's closing. "What's fortuitous for Epicurious is that the Random House recipes will make up for that," she said.

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