It is difficult to think of a food more basic, more essential, and more universal than bread. Common to the diets of both the rich and the poor, bread is one of our oldest foods. Loaves and rolls have been found in ancient Egyptian tombs, and wheat has been found in pits where human settlements flourished 8,000 years ago. Many anthropologists argue that the ability to sow and reap cereals, the grains necessary for making bread, could be one of the main reasons why man settled in communities, and even today the concept of “breaking bread together” is a lasting symbol of the uniting power of a meal.
Bread is an innovative mix of traditional history, cultural history, travelogue, and cookbook. William Rubel begins with the amazing invention of bread approximately 20,000 years ago in the Fertile Crescent and ends by speculating on the ways in which cultural forces and advances in biotechnology may influence the development of bread in the twenty-first century. Rubel shows how simple choices, may be responsible for the widespread preference for wheat over other bread grains and for the millennia-old association of elite dining with white bread. He even provides an analysis of the different components of bread, such as crust and crumb, so that readers may better understand the breads they buy. With many recipes integrated with the text and a glossary covering one hundred breads, Bread goes well beyond the simple choice of white or wheat.
Here, general readers will find an approachable introduction to the history of bread and to the many forms that bread takes throughout the world, and bread bakers will discover a history of the craft and new ways of thinking that will inspire experimentation.
Cooking Plain, Illinois Country Style by Helen Walker Linsenmeyer presents a collection of family recipes created prior to 1900 and perfected from generation to generation, mirroring the delicious and distinctive kind of cookery produced by the mix of people who settled the Illinois Country during this period. Some recipes reflect a certain New England or Southern influence, while others echo a European heritage. All hark back to a simpler style of living, when cooking was plain yet flavorful.
The recipes specify the use of natural ingredients (including butter, lard, and suet) rather than synthetic or ready-mixed foods, which were unavailable in the 1800s. Cooking at the time was pure and unadulterated, and portions were large. Strength-giving food was essential to health and endurance; thus fare was pure, hearty, flavorful, and wholesome.
The many treasures of Cooking Plain, Illinois Country Style include
• basic recipes for mead, originally served to the militiamen of Jackson County; sumac lemonade, made the Indian way; root beer, as it was originally made;
• soups of many kinds—from wholesome vegetable to savory sorrel leaf, enjoyed by the Kaskaskia French;
• old-fashioned fried beefsteak, classic American pot roast and gravy, as well as secret marinades to tenderize the tougher but more flavorful cuts of meat;
• methods for preparing and cooking rabbit, squirrel, wild turkey, venison, pheasant, rattlesnake, raccoon, buffalo, and fish;
• over one hundred recipes for wheat breads, sweet breads, corn breads, and pancakes;
• an array of delectable desserts and confections, including puddings, ice cream, taffy, and feathery-light cakes and pies;
• sections on the uses of herbs, spices, roots, and weeds; instructions for making sausage, jerky, and smoked fish and for drying one’s own fruits and vegetables; and household hints on everything from making lye soap to cooking for the sick.
And there are extra-special nuggets, too, for Mrs. Linsenmeyer laces her cookbook with interesting biographical notes on a number of the settlers and the origin of many of the foods they used. There is also a wealth of historical information on lifestyles and cooking before 1900, plus helpful tips on the use of old-fashioned cooking utensils.
A working cookbook complete in its coverage of every area of food preparation, Cooking Plain, Illinois Country Style will be used and treasured as much today as its recipes were by families of an earlier century. The recipes are not gourmet, but they are certain to please today’s cooks, especially those interested in using local ingredients and getting back to a more natural way of cooking and eating.
Let’s face it: roast beef and potatoes are all well and good, but for many of us, when it comes to gustatory delight, we’re all about dessert. Whether it’s a homemade strawberry shortcake in summer or a chef’s complex medley of sweets, dessert is the perfect finale to a meal. Most of us have a favorite, even those who seldom indulge. After all, sweet is one of the basic flavors—and one we seem hardwired to love.
Yet, as Jeri Quinzio reveals, while everyone has a taste for sweetness, not every culture enjoys a dessert course at the end of the meal. And desserts as we know them—the light sponge cakes of The Great British Baking Show, the ice creams, the steamed plum puddings—are neither as old nor as ubiquitous as many of us believe. Tracing the history of desserts and the way they, and the course itself, have evolved over time, Quinzio begins before dessert was a separate course—when sweets and savories were mixed on the table—and concludes in the present, when homey desserts are enjoying a revival, and as molecular gastronomists are creating desserts an alchemist would envy.
An indulgent, mouth-wateringly illustrated read featuring recipes; texts from chefs, writers, and diarists; and extracts (not the vanilla or almond variety) from cookbooks, menus, newspapers, and magazines, Dessert is a delectable happy ending for anyone with a curious mind—and an incorrigible sweet tooth.
Until its reissue in 1988 with the help of renowned southern culture scholar John Egerton, Dishes and Beverages of the Old South lingered as a rare text on southern foodways. Now, in its third edition, and with a new foreword by Sheri Castle, this pathfinding cookbook—one of the first to be written in a narrative style—is available to a new generation of southern foodies and amateur chefs. McCulloch-Williams not only provides recipes for the modern cook, but she expounds upon the importance of quality ingredients, muses on memories brought back by a good meal, and deftly recognizes that comfort goes hand in hand with southern eats. Castle navigates the third edition of Dishes and Beverages of the Old South with a clear vision of McCulloch-Williams and her southern opus, and readers and cooks alike will be invigorated by the republication of this classic work.
SHERI CASTLE is a food writer and author of three cookbooks on southern food, including The Southern Living Community Cookbook, which was a finalist for the IACP Cookbook Award.
Co-founded in 1997 by Ellen Yin, Fork, a casual but sophisticated restaurant nestled in Old City, has become one of Philadelphia's top dining establishments. The eclectic but distinctly American style of cooking -- influenced by many ethnicities -- is, Yin describes, "New-American bistro-style cuisine." Think pan-seared five-spice dusted chicken livers aside spinach salad with caramelized onions, or braised lamb shank in port wine-orange jus with creamy mashed boniato and sauteed swiss chard. Such are the delicacies Yin has been serving up for the past decade.
Forklore tells the tale of this extraordinary dining establishment, while dishing out some delectable recipes. Yin brings to her writing the same qualities of careful attention and lively enthusiasm that characterize her best dishes. With great gusto, she describes how she fell in love with food, how Fork was born, and how her chefs have helped to create its unique cuisine. And throughout her story she liberally sprinkles recipes -- simple, delicious, and easy to cook at home -- that represent the best of New American Bistro cooking. There are nearly 100 recipes in all, and every one has a story, served up by Yin with relish and delight.
For anyone who likes a juicy story, well seasoned with zesty anecdotes and mouthwatering recipes, Forklore is a treat.
In Good Bread Is Back, historian and leading French bread expert Steven Laurence Kaplan takes readers into aromatic Parisian bakeries as he explains how good bread began to reappear in France in the 1990s, following almost a century of decline in quality. Kaplan describes how, while bread comprised the bulk of the French diet during the eighteenth century, by the twentieth, per capita consumption had dropped off precipitously. This was largely due to social and economic modernization and the availability of a wider choice of foods. But part of the problem was that the bread did not taste good. In a culture in which bread is sacrosanct, bad bread was more than a gastronomical disappointment; it was a threat to France's sense of itself. By the mid-1990s bakers rallied, and bread officially designated as "bread of the French tradition" was in demand throughout Paris. Kaplan meticulously describes good bread's ideal crust and crumb (interior), mouth feel, aroma, and taste. He discusses the breadmaking process in extraordinary detail, from the ingredients to the kneading, shaping, and baking, and even the sound bread should make when it comes out of the oven. Kaplan does more than tell the story of the revival of good bread in France. He makes the reader see, smell, taste, feel, and even hear why it is so very wonderful that good bread is back.
Eighty delicious, imaginative recipes from the Star Tribune’s beloved annual cookie contest, with mouth-watering pictures and bakers’ stories
It’s cold in Minnesota, especially around the holidays, and there’s nothing like baking a batch of cookies to warm the kitchen and the heart. A celebration of the rich traditions, creativity, and taste of the region, The Great Minnesota Cookie Book collects the best-loved recipes and baking lore from fifteen years of the Star Tribune’s popular holiday cookie contest.
Drop cookies and cutouts, refrigerator cookies and bars; Swedish shortbread, Viennese wafers, and French–Swiss butter cookies; almond palmiers; chai crescents and taffy treats; snowball clippers, cherry pinwheels, lime coolers, and chocolate-drizzled churros: a dizzying array and all delightful, the recipes in this book recall memories of holidays past and inspire the promise of happy gatherings to come.
These are winning cookies in every sense, the best of the best chosen by the contest’s judges, accompanied by beautiful photographs as instructive as they are enticing. A treat for any occasion, whether party, bake sale, or after-school snack, each time- and taste-tested recipe is perfect for starting a tradition of one’s own.
Be it soft-serve, gelato, frozen custard, Indian kulfi or Israeli glida, some form of cold, sweet ice cream treat can found throughout the world in restaurants and home freezers. Though ice cream was once considered a food for the elite, it has evolved into one of the most successful mass-market products ever developed.
In Ice Cream, food writer Laura B. Weiss takes the reader on a vibrant trip through the history of ice cream from ancient China to modern-day Tokyo in order to tell the lively story of how this delicious indulgence became a global sensation. Weiss tells of donkeys wooed with ice cream cones, Good Humor-loving World War II-era German diplomats, and sundaes with names such as “Over the Top” and “George Washington.” Her account is populated with Chinese emperors, English kings, former slaves, women inventors, shrewd entrepreneurs, Italian immigrant hokey-pokey ice cream vendors, and gourmand American First Ladies. Today American brands dominate the world ice cream market, but vibrant dessert cultures like Italy’s continue to thrive, and new ones, like Japan’s, flourish through unique variations.
Weiss connects this much-loved food with its place in history, making this a book sure to be enjoyed by all who are beckoned by the siren song of the ice cream truck.
Every day, noodle shops around the globe ladle out quick meals that fuel our go-go lives. But Ken Albala has a mission: to get YOU in the kitchen making noodle soup. This primer offers the recipes and techniques for mastering quick-slurper staples and luxurious from-scratch feasts. Albala made a different noodle soup every day for two years. His obsession yielded all you need to know about making stock bases, using dried or fresh noodles, and choosing from a huge variety of garnishes, flavorings, and accompaniments. He lays out innovative techniques for mixing and matching bases and noodles with grains, vegetables, and other ingredients drawn from an international array of cuisines. In addition to recipes both cutting edge and classic, Alabala describes new soup discoveries he created along the way. There's advice on utensils, cooking tools, and the oft-overlooked necessity of matching a soup to the proper bowl. Finally, he sprinkles in charming historical details that cover everything from ancient Chinese millet noodles to that off-brand Malaysian ramen at the back of the ethnic grocery store. Filled with more than seventy color photos and one hundred recipes, A World of Noodle Soup is an indispensable guide for cooking, eating, and loving a universal favorite.
The Norske Nook, founded as a small-town café in 1973, is now a foursome of revered pie shrines in Osseo, Rice Lake, Eau Claire, and Hayward, Wisconsin. The Nook’s international fame grew from a tradition of Midwest home baking, informed by Scandinavian roots and enriched by the luscious ripe fruit and sumptuous sour creams and cream cheeses of America’s dairyland.
This cookbook features the restaurants’ award-winning baking: Scandinavian specialties, cheesecakes, tortes, cookies, muffins, and more than seventy recipes (and variations) for pie. More than fifty new pie recipes have been created by the Nook bakers since 1990, when Jerry Bechard purchased the Osseo café from founder Helen Myhre. The Norske Nook has won thirty-six blue ribbons at the National Pie Championships in Florida—including three in 2014, for Lemon Cream Cheese, Peaches and Cream, and Jamberry.
Gold Medal Winner, Cookbook, Foreword Reviews IndieFab Book of the Year Awards
Runner-up, Cookbooks/Crafts/Hobbies, Midwest Book Awards
“Outstanding” books for public & secondary school libraries from university presses, American Library Association
“Best of the Best” books for public libraries from university presses, American Library Association
From the fiery kimchi of Korea to American dill spears; from the spicy achar of India to the ceviche of Latin America; from Europe’s sauerkraut to brined herrings and chutneys, pickles are unquestionably a global food. They are also of the moment. Growing interest in naturally fermented vegetables—pickles by another name—means that today, in the early twenty-first century, we are seeing a renaissance in the making and consumption of pickles. Across continents and throughout history, humans have relied upon pickling to preserve foods and add to their flavor. Both a cherished food of the elite and a staple of the masses, pickles have also acquired new significance in our health-conscious times: traditionally fermented pickles are probiotic and said to possess anti-aging and anti-cancer properties, while pickle juice is believed to prevent muscle cramps in athletes and reduce sugar spikes in diabetics. Nota bene: It also cures hangovers.
In Pickles, Jan Davison explores the cultural and gastronomic importance of pickles from the earliest civilizations’ brine-makers to twenty-first-century dilettantes of dill. Join Davison and discover the art of pickling as mastered by the ancient Chinese; find out why Korean astronaut Yi So-yeon took pickled cabbage into space in 2008; learn how the Japanese pickle the deadly puffer fish; and uncover the pickling provenance of that most popular of condiments, tomato ketchup. A compulsively consumable, globe-trotting tour sure to make you pucker, Davison’s book shows us how pickles have been omnipresent in humanity’s common quest not only to preserve foods, but to create them—with relish.
You can pick Chicago deep dish, Sicilian, or New York-style; pan crust or thin crust; anchovies or pepperoni. There are countless ways to create the dish called pizza, as well as a never-ending debate on the best way of cooking it. Now Carol Helstosky documents the fascinating history and cultural life of this chameleon-like food in Pizza.
Originally a food for the poor in eighteenth-century Naples, the pizza is a source of national and regional pride as well as cultural identity in Italy, Helstosky reveals. In the twentieth century, the pizza followed Italian immigrants to America, where it became the nation’s most popular dish and fueled the rise of successful fast-food corporations such as Pizza Hut and Domino’s. Along the way, Helstosky explains, pizza has been adapted to local cuisines and has become a metaphor for cultural exchange. Pizza also features several recipes and a wealth of illustrations, including a photo of the world’s largest and most expensive pizza—sprinkled with edible 24-karat gold shavings and costing over $4000.
Whether you love sausage and onions on your pizza or unadorned cheese, Pizza has enough offerings to satiate even the pickiest of readers.
There are few things that Chicagoans feel more passionately about than pizza. Most have strong opinions about whether thin crust or deep-dish takes the crown, which ingredients are essential, and who makes the best pie in town.
And in Chicago, there are as many destinations for pizza as there are individual preferences. Each of the city's seventy-seven neighborhoods is home to numerous go-to spots, featuring many styles and specialties. With so many pizzerias, it would seem impossible to determine the best of the best.
Enter renowned Chicago-based food journalist Steve Dolinsky! In Pizza City, USA: 101 Reasons Why Chicago Is America's Greatest Pizza Town, Dolinsky embarks on a pizza quest, methodically testing more than a hundred different pizzas in Chicagoland. Zestfully written and thoroughly researched, Pizza City, USA is a hunger–inducing testament to Dolinsky's passion for great, unpretentious food.
This user-friendly guide is smartly organized by location, and by the varieties served by the city's proud pizzaioli–including thin, artisan, Neapolitan, deep-dish and pan, stuffed, Sicilian, Roman, and Detroit-style, as well as by-the-slice. Pizza City also includes Dolinsky's "Top 5 Pizzas" in several categories, a glossary of Chicago pizza terms, and maps and photos to steer devoted foodies and newcomers alike.
In Teatimes, food historian Helen Saberi takes us on a stimulating journey beyond the fine porcelain, doilies, crumpets, and jam into the fascinating and diverse history of tea drinking. From elegant afternoon teas, hearty high teas, and cricket and tennis teas, to funeral teas, cream teas, and many more, Saberi investigates the whole panoply of teatime rituals and ephemera—including tea gardens, tea dances, tea gowns, and tearooms. We are invited to spend time in the sophisticated salons de thé of Paris and the cozy tearooms of the United States; to enjoy the teatime traditions of Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa, where housewives prided themselves on their “well-filled tins”; to sit in on the tea parties of the Raj and Irani cafes in India; to savor teatimes along the Silk Road, where the samovar and chaikhana reign supreme; and to delight in the tasty dim sum of China and the intricate tradition of cha kaiseki in Japan. Steeped in evocative illustrations and recipes from around the world, Teatimes shows how tea drinking has become a global obsession, from American iced tea and Taiwanese bubble tea to the now-classic English afternoon tea. Pinkies up!