Two Hurricane Sandy damaged copies of Maricel E. Presilla’s Gran Cocina Latina, the winner of the 2013 James Beard Foundation Cookbook of the Year. They were damaged last year in the flooding that swept through Presilla’s two restaurants and shop in her Hoboken, New Jersey neighborhood.

When Presilla waded through the flood waters to check on the damage to her properties, she found photographs from the Peruvian Andes floating up from the basement of the shop, a vintage chest made of hide that had become mangled and smelly — and boxes of the newly released cookbook soaking wet like bricks on the floor of her office.

Read the inspiring story of one chef’s year of recovery on