Search This Blog

Thursday, September 4, 2008

BOOK REVIEW: MAYAN CUISINE; recipes from the Yucatan region

 MAYAN CUISINE; recipes from the Yucatan region (Gibbs Smith, 2008;
distr. Raincoast, 224 pages, ISBN 978-1-4236-0131-9, $34.95 US hard
covers) is by Daniel Hoyer, author of other Mexican cookbooks, and
former sous-chef at Coyote Café. He also leads culinary tours into
Mexico. Mayan food means primarily chocolate, tropical fruits, and
seafood. Hoyer places it all into a cultural and historical context,
saying that the most popular "tourist" places to get this food is in
Yucatan, Belize, Cancun, and Playa del Carmen. His scope includes fresh
salsas, soups, BBQ, salads and sides, as well as desserts and
beverages. You'll need a pantry, sort of like a Mexican pantry. The
distinctive flavours come from Mayan "recados" (or, recaudos) which
here means seasoning pastes. There are about 125 recipes and
variations. The ingredients and sources list are all US, but there is a
metric conversion chart for the avoirdupois weights and measures used
in listing the ingredients.
Check his website for more
Audience and level of use: tourists, Mexican and Caribbean food lovers.
Some interesting or unusual recipes/facts:  avocado soup, Maya
chocolate drink (chorreado), papaya marmalade, Mayan-style grilled
fish, Caribbean coconut fish soup, turkey in black sauce with stuffed
pork roll, pit-roasted chicken, smoked pork stew.
The downside to this book: menus might have been useful, to show how
dishes go together. Wine notes could also have been appreciated.
The upside to this book: good photography and a good size for the
Quality/Price Rating: 89.

No comments: