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Thursday, December 12, 2013


...all reflect a boom in the cookbook publishing business. A paperback
reprint will lower the cost to the purchaser, and also give a publisher
a chance to correct egregious errors or add a postscript. Some will
reissue a book in paper covers with a new layout or photos. Others will
rearrange existing material to present it as more informative text
while keeping the focus tight. Some magazines will reissue popular or
classic recipes in an "easy" format. Here are some recent "re-

22. THE FONDUE BIBLE; the 200 best recipes (Robert Rose, 2007, 2013,
269 pages, ISBN 978-0-7788-0166-5, $27.95 CAN paper covers) is by Ilana
Simon, who has written other cookbooks for Robert Rose. In 2001, she
produced 125 recipes for fondues, and then in 2007 it became this book
of 200 preps. The latest book is an updating (lower calories and fat)
plus additional colour photos. It's basic, of course, but the resulting
food is healthier. The arrangement is by type: cheese, oil, broth, and
dessert, with a chapter on dips and sauces. Try the traditional
emmentaler-gruyere fondue, or a Dijon lamb, or paella fondue, and, of
course, the world famous chocolate fondue. Preparations have their
ingredients listed in both metric and avoirdupois measurements in
separate columns, but there is no table of equivalents.
Quality/price rating: 87.
Books, 2013, 502 pages, ISBN  978-177085-222-8, $49.95 hard covers) is
by Simon Difford, an award-winning spirits writer in the UK. It was
last out, as a tenth edition, just in 2012. It is exceedingly useful
for its 3000 recipes, with many new ones since the last edition. Many
recipes have been modified one way or another: different brands are
used, different proportions adapt to modern times, recipes are simpler.
There are four basic ways to mix a cocktail: stir, shake, blend, and
build, and there is an order in which to mix the ingredients. His preps
show those things, along with appropriate garnishes, a correct glass,
and information on origins. He has a listing of 14 key alcoholic
ingredients for 450 cocktails and 28 essential staples. Most of the
book is, of course, an A – Z dictionary style arrangement of the
cocktails, using the best known name of the drink. There is no real
ingredient index, but there is a printed "partner index" which
highlights some suppliers used as ingredients. He has no overall print
index to, say, rye or rum. You can always search cocktail recipes by
ingredients at Quality/price rating: 85.

24. THE HEALING HERBS COOKBOOK (Robert Rose, 1999, 2013, 192 pages,
ISBN 978-0-7788-0004-0, $19.95 CAN paper covers) is by Pat Crocker,
award-winning cookbook author and professional home economist. It was
originally published in 1999, but here it has been updated, extended,
and revised. Her book is about incorporating the health benefits of
herbs into our daily food, although you might have to eat a lot of it.
There are 115 vegetarian recipes here, covering the gamut from
starters, soups, salads, mains, pasta, desserts, beverages and
condiments. There is also a glossary and herb-specific entries in the
recipe index. Try kamut with sauteed summer veggies, cauliflower with
split peas, parsnip veggie cakes, and veggie sushi. Unfortunately,
while the herb sources listing has been updated, the bibliography
hasn't. There is not a single book that has been published since 1997.
Really? Preparations have their ingredients listed in both avoirdupois
and metric measurements, but there is no table of equivalents.
Quality/price rating: 85.
25. PASTRY; a master class for everyone, in 150 photos and 50 recipes
(Chronicle Books, 2012, 2013, 223 pages, ISBN 978-1-4521-1549-8, $30 US
hard covers) is by Richard Bertinet, owner of an eponymous cooking
school in the UK. His first book was awarded a Beard for Baking and
Desserts. This current book was first published in the UK by Ebury
Random House in 2012, and this is the North American release. Here is
the art of hand made pastry, embracing salted, sweet, puff and choux.
There is step-by-step photography and weight measurements for all
pastry ingredients. Preparations have their ingredients listed in
avoirdupois measurements, but unfortunately there is no table of metric
equivalents. You will end up having to weight such things as 1.2 ounces
of water or 8.9 ounces of flour, but still deal with tablespoons and
fractions elsewhere. That's the beauty of metric: great scaling and
proportional numbers. Everything works well, but you MUST pay attention
to the numbers. Quality/price rating: 81.
26. THE 250 BEST COOKIE RECIPES (Robert Rose, 2001, 2013, 192 pages,
ISBN 978-0-7788-0468-0 $19.95 CAN soft covers) and
27. THE 250 BEST BROWNIES BARS AND SQUARES (Robert Rose, 2001, 2013,
192 pages, ISBN 978-0-7788-0467-3, $19.95 CAN paper covers)
are both by Esther Brody who has developed thousands of baking recipes
over the years. Other best selling books have dealt with "250 Best
Muffins" and "250 Best Cobblers, Cupcakes and Bread Puddings". These
current books came out in 2001 and then got reworked together in 2004,
and then split apart again in 2013. Both are straightforward
collections. The cookie book includes separate chapters for drop
cookies, hand shapes, sliced, biscotti, no-bake, and holiday. The other
book has separate chapters for chocolate bars and squares, coconut bars
and squares, fruit bars and squares, brownies, no-bakes, frostings, and
more. Most preps call for all-purpose flour, but there are some with
oats. Unfortunately, there was a lost opportunity to stick in a few
gluten-free baking recipes. These would have been exceptionally useful
since baked desserts are the best, most successful use of gluten-free
flours.  Preparations have their ingredients listed in both metric and
avoirdupois measurements by columns, but there is no table of
equivalents. Quality/price rating: 86.

(Transcontinental Books, 2013; distr. Random House Canada, 270 pages,
ISBN 978-0-9877474-5-7, $29.95 paper covers) is from the Test Kitchen
of Canadian Living Magazine. Here are dishes, mostly culled from the
monthly pages, which the publisher says "carnivores crave". So we have
a collection intended for family dinners, BBQs, and some entertaining,
ranging from stews and burgers through to roasts and steaks. But lamb
has only 27 preps, it does not sell as well as beef or pork. And the
Lazy Shepherd's Pie is really a Lazy Cottage Pie, since it calls for
all beef and no lamb at all. Lamb is the only meat in Shepherd's Pie
(why do you think it is called shepherd's pie????). Arrangement is by
type of cut. If you want all the recipes for one kind of animal, you'll
have to look up "lamb", "pork" or "beef" separately in the index. Try
pork katsu, cilantro lamb racks, lamb korma, Mexican slow-roasted leg
of lamb, and Spanish-style lamb kebabs.  Preparations have their
ingredients listed mostly in avoirdupois measurements with no metric,
but there is no table of metric equivalents. Quality/price rating: 85.
29. THE ECZEMA DIET; discover how to stop & prevent the itch of eczema
through diet & nutrition. (Robert Rose, 2012, 2013, 269 pages, ISBN
978-0-7788-0461-1, $24.95 CAN paper covers) is by Karen Fischer, health
researcher and nutrition author (The 8-week Healthy Skin Diet). Here
she takes on eczema. The book was originally published last year in
Australia, and has been revised for the North American market. The
number of people with eczema is rising and has tripled in recent years
throughout the developed world – now reaching about one in five. Modern
medicine provides temporary and topical relief, but Fischer believes
that lifestyle changes in environment and diet are necessary for a
"cure". She's got lots of research and anecdotal evidence, charts,
graphs, tables, and the like. There is basic info on healthy skins, how
the eczema diet works, how to promote a healthy liver, top foods,
recipes, and more. Plus the 50 or so recipes. Preparations have their
ingredients listed in both metric and avoirdupois measurements, but
there is no table of equivalents. Quality/price rating: 88.
30. 125 BEST INDOOR GRILL RECIPES (Robert Rose, 2004, 189 pages, ISBN
978-0-7788-0102-3, $19.95 CAN paper covers) is by Ilana Simon. It is
now back in print: a basic primer on using indoor grills, mostly
electrical. It is loaded with techniques, ingredients, tools, charts
for internal cooking times, and the 125 recipes covering salads,
sandwiches, burgers, mains and sides, plus a few desserts. Preparations
have their ingredients listed in both metric and avoirdupois
measurements, but there is no table of equivalents. Try Asian steak
noodle salad, grilled brie pockets, or orange sesame chicken.
Quality/price rating: 85.

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