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Sunday, July 23, 2017


...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"...
24.CHEESECAKE; 60 classic and original recipes for heavenly desserts (Ryland Peters & Small, 2013, 2017, 144 pages, ISBN 978-1-84975-831-4, $19.95 US hardbound) is by Hannah Miles, an early winner in UK's MasterChef – in 2007 she was one of three finalists. She continues to make TV appearances for the BBC and has written other cookbooks on popcorn, whoopie pies, and doughnuts. Here, in this reprint of the 2013 edition, she tackles 60 cheesecakes, very easy to make. She begins with a primer. The classics here include chocolate chip and baked vanilla. Then there are the fruity (champagne rhubarb), the candy bar (peanut brittle), the gourmet (salty honey), the party (trifle cheesecake, baked Alaska), and the global (cardamom bun, Japanese cherry blossom). Preparations have their ingredients listed in both metric and avoirdupois measurements, but there is no separate table of equivalents. Quality/price rating: 88.
25.GRAINS; the definitive guide to cooking seeds & legumes (Hardie Grant Books, 2013, 2016, 304 pages, ISBN 978-1-74379216-2 $24.99 USD paperbound) is by Molly Brown. It was originally published in French by Marabout Hachette in 2013, and then in hardbound by Hardie Grant in 2013. This is the paperback reprint with the same material. Brown is a chef and food writer. But it is still pretty hard to cover all this material in just 150 recipes. It is all arranged by course: breakfast, soups, stews, salads, pilaffs, risottos, paellas, dinners, sides, sweets and breads/crackers. Into those 12 divisions there are eight seeds (sesame, chia, hemp, pumpkin, et al), twenty legumes (lentils, beans, peas at al), and twenty grains (oats, rices, wheat, barley, corn, quinoa, millet, er al). So that's 48 types, possibly times 12 courses. Of course, the book must be manageable and there are close dupes in all categories, plus variations. Nevertheless, it is fairly comprehensive, with prep and cooking times, metric and avoirdupois measurements (but no conversion tables). But at the very end of the book, just ahead of the index, there are two statements: eggs are large unless stated otherwise; If not specified, butter should be salted. Both need to come earlier in the book, in a larger typeface. Quality/price rating: 85
26.A WORLD OF DUMPLINGS (Countryman Press, 2007, 2017, 292 pages, ISBN 978-1-68268-017-9, $24.95 USD paperbound) is by Brian Yarvin, who is a teacher of food and commercial photography as well as the author of five cookbooks. His book was originally published in 2007; the 2017 version has been revised and updated, principally with newer access to "exotic" ingredients. These are filled dumplings, pockets, and global little pies, all arranged by region of the world (Asia, Central Asia, Middle East, Eastern Europe and Russia, Western Europe, and the Americas. It starts with Japan (gyoza fried dumplings) and ends with Quebec (apple dumplings with mincemeat and cheddar). In between there are more than 100 preps embracing ravioli, pot stickers, samosas, empanadas, Cornish pasties, pierogies, etc. He's got a GF dough for wrapper, but also says in many recipes that you can just leave off the wrapper and cook the inside as a meatball for GF friends, in a separate pot of water. Preparations have their ingredients listed in avoirdupois measurements, but there is no table of metric equivalents. Quality/price rating: 87.
27.BARBECUE SAUCES RUBS AND MARINADES (Workman, 2000, 2017, 346 pages, ISBN 978-1-5235-0081-9, $17.95 USD paperbound) is by Steven Raichlen, who has been BBQing over at for years. He's published a multitude of award-winning IACP and Beard cookbooks over the years. Portions of this current book were originally published in 2000 as "Barbecue Bible Sauces, Rubs, and Marinades, Bastes, Butters & Glazes". It's been revised and updated and added to in line with the third season of his PBS show "Steve Raichlen's Project Smoke". It's a good book because he's got over 200 preps for chile-fired ribs, lemony marinades, buttery bastes, flavourful sauces, brines/cures/glazes/salsas/relishes/chutneys. New techniques include cider sprays and dry brining, with many more exotic international flavours such as char siu chicken, smoked venison jerky, Persian saffron lamb, and smoky whipped cream. You'll have fun with this one. Preparations have their ingredients listed in avoirdupois measurements, but there are tables of metric equivalents. Quality/price rating: 90.
28.POSH RICE (Quadrille Publishing, 2017, 176 pages, ISBN 978-1-84949-902-6 $19.99 USD hardcovers) is by Emily Kydd, who's a recipe writer and a food stylist for Quadrille (verso of the title page). The copyright is in Quadrille's name, and they have published two similar books, one on Nourish Bowls and one on Posh Toast. Here are over 70 recipes for all things rice, from pilaff to pies, puddings to snack bars, arranged by topic of salads, bowls, soups, snacks, supper dishes, sides, and desserts. There's a lamb biryani, a Gruyere zucchini gratin, jeweled rice, and mango with coconut sticky rice. Preparations have their ingredients listed in both metric and avoirdupois measurements. Quality/price rating: 86
29.VEGAN ON THE GO (DK, 2016, 2017, 192 pages, ISBN 978-1-4654-6183-4, $17/95 USD papercovers) is by Jerome Eckmeier and Daniela Lais, both vegans for over a decade and actively involved in veganism in Germany. The book was originally published by DK Verlag in Germany; this is the English translation for North America. The stress is on fast, easy, affordable, anytime, anywhere. So there are 100 preps here, arranged by soups, snacks, salads, mains and sweets. The opening chapters give an overview of the vegan life with strategies for planning ahead, packing and storing food, finding quick options and tactics for eating out. Most of the dishes are very appetizing, and I liked the fact that there were only seven tofu recipes. Try juicy mandarin and chia seed muffins or semolina slice with apple and pear puree, or even a range of spaghetti frittatas. Preparations have their ingredients listed in both metric and avoirdupois measurements, but there is no table of equivalents. Quality/price rating: 87.
30.RISOTTO! RISOTTO! (Absolute Press, 1998, 2017, 192 pages, ISBN 978-1-4729-3320-1 $30 USD hardbound) is by Valentina Harris, well-known food author with more than 30 cookbooks to her name (since 1984, and principally Italian cuisine). This current book was originally published in 1998 by Cassell in the UK. It has been revised and extended, now 20 years later. Risotto has been around in Italy since about the eighth century, and is one of its more famous dishes. She's got pages on making risotto and eating risotto, followed by an illustrated history of risotto and a discussion on the types of rice. Ten varieties are used (arborio, carnaroli, vialone, et al) and their differences are noted. Chapters include making stock, the use of wine, and more. Typical classics are here, such as risi e bisi, Gorgonzola, Parmigiana, Siciliana, orzotto alla primavera (made with barley), and pesto. Milanese is also here, but for some reason, it is not indexed.
Leftovers, of course, become arancini, but she also provides a few more uses. Some of the preps call for adding wine measured as a "wineglass", and she specifies that this volume is about 200 – 250 mL, which to me is too wide a range of some two ounces from the low to the high: another example of having to use a calibrated eyeball in the kitchen. Preparations have their ingredients listed in metric measurements, but there is no table of equivalents. Quality/price rating: 88.

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