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Friday, November 5, 2021

FOOD BOOK OF THE MONTH -- Grist, by Abra Berens (Chronicle Books)

1.GRIST; a practical guide to cooking grains, beans, seeds, and legumes (Chronicle Books, 2021, 448 pages, $50 hardbound) is by Abra Berens, a Michigan-based chef, author (her "Ruffage" was a Beard Nominee), and former farmer. So she's travelled from grower to eater, and is connecting more people to the source of their foods. She's got more than 80 recipes for 28 different types of grains, legumes and seeds, and more than 160 variations, and more than 55 recipes for condiments of sauces, dressings, and pantry items that can mix-and-match multiple flavours. These are all basic preps, with at least three variations for each recipe that are useful for substitutions, seasonal produce, or whatever is at hand. Everything here can be considered a go-to dish. It's a marvellous reference book with international global scope in preps and flavours. Indeed, she "promises" a week's worth of lentils without any boredom. She details creating a myriad of fresh bean salads. The book is nicely illustrated with photography, line drawings, stories about the grains, and more stories about farmers who produce them.  She's added a glossary of terms, a list of sources, a vegetable cheat sheet, and good common sense. Quality/Price rating: 94.

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