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Monday, August 31, 2015


...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-editions"...
29.THE CRAFT BEER REVOLUTION; how a band of microbrewers is transforming the world's favorite drink (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014, 2015; distr. Raincoast, 252 pages, ISBN 978-1-137-28012-1, $16 US paper covers) is by Steve Hindy, co-founder of the Brooklyn Brewery, It comes loaded with more than a dozen different log rollers, most of whom are associated with the US microbrewing industry. And four glosses of reviews. It is a basic history of the past 50 years' explosion of artisanal crafted beer. The pioneers started the demand for strong flavours, all-malt, and higher alcohol than the frankly acknowledged horse piss of the major players. It is also about independence and the frontier, reflected in the labels that are just short of cuss words and incitement to riots. There are more than 3000 craft brewers in the US, with more being added all the time; they have about 10% of the total market. There is comparable growth in Canada, but the regulatory bodies have nipped the flashy labeling. For example, in the UK, 140 labels have been pulled since 1989. Rebel brands are a big deal in the US, especially south of the Mason-Dixon line where some labels really are rebel, as in Civil War. Still, there are fractious factions in the craft brewing industry, and he pulls no punches. Hindy also discusses the acquisition period where big money meets craft brewing (1994 – 2000). There are notes on the associations (Brewers' Association of America and the Association of Brewers). But nothing on NAFTA or free trade. There are black and white photos scattered throughout this good business history book. But as Hindy says,
"The future of craft brewing largely depends on how that [Brewer's Association] power is wielded." Quality/Price Rating: 89.
30.WORLD CHEESE BOOK (DK, 2009, 2015, 352 pages, ISBN 978-1-4654-3605-4, $25 US soft covers) has been edited by Juliet Harbutt (cheese expert since opening Jeroboams Wine and Cheese Shop in 1984, now an industry consultant-judge) with an international list of 21 contributors, generally one per country or region. It is a basic reprint of the 2009 edition but in paper covers. Gurth Pretty ( covers Canada. He gives 24 cheeses, three per page, on p310 through p317. He tries for regional representation, but still, most cheese are from Quebec – and rightly so. And there's even a generic "cheddar curds" from all over the country. My Canadian fave is the black waxed cylinder of Dragon's Breath Blue from Nova Scotia, which changes over time and intensifies its "blueness". The book has 750 cheeses, photographed as you would buy them AND in close-ups so you can see the cleanly sliced version and check for colour, holes and texture of the paste. Most should be available at the larger urban cheese store. Some can come via post from producers or cheese shops. There is a basic primer on cheeses, well-illustrated, over two dozen pages. Then there is a country-by-country arrangement beginning, of course, with France, plowing through the rest of Europe, the Americas, Japan, and Australia and New Zealand (you'd think that with all those sheep there would be more ewe cheeses, but no). For each cheese, there is a description, tasting notes on the paste and rind, how best to enjoy it, its age, weight and shape, size, type of milk (not broken down by time of day), classification, producers. A first rate job. The publisher has lots of menu suggestions for accompaniments, with some wine notes, use in cooking, and cheeseboard ideas and possibilities. And I love those close-up pix of the pastes and 7rinds. Quality/Price Rating: 91.
31.THE VEGETABLE GARDEN COOKBOOK (Skyhorse Publishing, 2015, 176 pages, ISBN 978-1-63220-673-2, $24.99 US hard covers) is by Tobias Rauschenberger, a chef who is now a food stylist and cookbook author. It was originally published in German in 2013. 23 veggies are covered through 60 recipes, beginning with eggplant and running through to fennel and onions. There is a good description and photo of the plant followed by some recipes. Onion pasta is pretty  simple, but also pretty good. Preparations have their ingredients listed mainly in avoirdupois measurements, but there is no table of metric equivalents. Quality/price rating: 85.


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