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Saturday, February 8, 2014


..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-

(Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013, 408 pages, ISBN 978—0-470-58781-2,
$35 US hard covers) presents the essentials of cooking: tools and
equipment, ingredients, pantry, techniques. It was originally published
by Wiley in 2003, selling at $60. This edition has 104 more pages, and
now has 250 new recipes and new colour photography. There are scores of
cooking techniques which are explained, with full instructions and
photos of processes, followed by basic recipes with more photos of
platings. The book starts with soups (and stocks) such as Thai hot and
sour soup, moving through the menu to desserts such as bread and butter
pudding. The basic and the classic are presented, with plenty of paged
cross-references from a recipe to the techniques involved. Gone, for
example, are the chicken thighs with duxelles stuffing and the braised
rabbit. Basics also include southern fried chicken and chicken breasts
made with diverse sauces. Classics include duck and orange sauce, osso
buco, and paella Valenciana. While there are illustrations of what you
can do with a knife (e.g., chop, dice, julienne, etc.), there are no
detailed instructions nor illustrations on how to hold the knife, nor
on the stroke action. What I do like about this book is its
authoritative style, very useful for beginners. Preparations have their
ingredients listed only in avoirdupois measurements, but there are
tabled of metric equivalents. Quality/price rating: 88, for the home

21. COUTURE CHOCOLATE; a masterclass in chocolate (Jacqui Small LLP,
2011, 2013, 224 pages, ISBN 978-1-909342-45-3, $29.95 US soft covers)
is by William Curley, four time winner of Best British Chocolatier
award from the Academy of Chocolate. There's also log rolling from
Heston Blumenthal and Marco Pierre White, amongst others. This current
book, originally published in 2011, won the Guild of Food Writers
Cookery Book of the Year award in 2012. It is a colourful book
examining origins and bean qualities, plus other items in a chapter
dealing with essentials. This is followed by classes in truffles, bars,
bouchees, cakes, patisserie, ice cream and sauces, and so forth. It's a
DIY book, with absolutely gorgeous photos. There's a glossary, and a
resources list (almost all of it is British). Try chocolate and
pistachio cake, milk chocolate and jasmine granita, or caramelized
white chocolate and miso ice cream in coconut and orange cone.
Preparations have their ingredients listed in both metric and
avoirdupois measurements, but there is no table of equivalents.
Quality/price rating: 89.

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