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Hardcover The Best Recipes in the World : More Than 1,000 International Dishes to Cook at Home Book

ISBN: 0767906721

ISBN13: 9780767906722

The Best Recipes in the World : More Than 1,000 International Dishes to Cook at Home

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Book Overview

The bestselling author of How to Cook Everything has gathered over 1,000 recipes in 52 international menus for the best dishes that people cook every day on every continent in the world--from Spain to India, from Mexico to Thailand. Two-color interior; 100+ b/w drawings.

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

Culinary trip around the world for the novice and seasoned home cook.

Broad selection of international recipes. Well written and organized. Recipes are spare in the Bittman "minimalist" style with interesting and informative sidenotes. Chapters organized from appetizers, soups, salads, fish, poultry, meat, vegetables to condiments, desserts and beverages allow easy comparison and contrasting of cuisines for the same foods. Each recipe is catagorized "make ahead," serve at room temp/cold," "30 minutes or less." and indexed by cuisine. The index is very helpful for menu planning and selecting culinary themes. It is a fun book to read and easy book to use. For the novice as well as the seasoned home cook. Nice addition to cookbook library.

Perfect for the Home Chef with a Day Job

I bought this book about two months ago because I was bored with my normal cooking routine and wanted to play around with some new recipes. I could not be more pleased with the outcome. What makes this cookbook great is its approach - it is aimed at making international cuisine practical for those of us who have a day job but still want to eat well on a weeknight. It does this by: (1) outlining the core spices you'll want to add to your spice rack to be able to readily cook various cuisines, and; (2) skipping unnecessary steps in recipes that prolong the time and effort needed to cook well. The net result is that you can eat fantastic international cuisine any night of the week using the ingredients you have available in your kitchen, and for about the same effort as cooking dull staples. Purists may complain about the "veracity" of some of these recipes, and that is fine and appropriate. That is not the point of this book. The point is that you can make a Thai or Indian dish for about the same effort it would take to make a lackluster tuna casserole, and it will be better than what you can get at a restaurant (indeed, I cannot sing the priases of the Red-Braised Chicken recipe enough - this is the best north Indian dish I have ever had, and it is incredibly easy). Also: you will also never, ever, go back to canned pasta sauce again. Once you play around with a few recipes, you will be readily able to concoct heavenly sauce from fresh ingredients in the time it takes to boil pasta. My only complaint with this book (and this is very, very minor), is that you need to keep an eye on the calories of some of these recipes - they can add up quickly. Coconut rice, for example, is delightful all by itself - which is not something I ever thought rice could be. However I gasped when, after having made this two nights in a row, I learned that each can of coconut milk has 700 calories - and there are two cans of them in this recipe - in addition to whatever calories are added by the rice itself and the dish that accompanies it. Nevertheless, many of these recipes are very healthy if you are careful, and these recipes will definitely increase your intake of fresh vegetables, since they are loaded with delightful uses for them. Buy this book, eat well, and be happy.

A comprhensive collection of recipes.

Mark Bittman has presented us with a wonderful set of worldly recipes. The recipes are usually adapted well for the average cook and will give you a taste of various national and ethnic flavors. Although I have not cooked all of the recipes in this book, what I have cooked, work. Bittman has always done an excellent job of adapting recipes for available foods, herbs, and spices. Unusual techniques are explained clearly and concisely. I can find nothing to complain about "the Best Recipes in the World." It has become one of the favorite cookbooks in my collection.

Nobody Does It Better. A Great New Cookbook

Years ago I stopped collecting cookbooks and gave most of them away. Except for Mark Bittman. This book is AWESOME. This man got is all right. The book is uniquely creative, wonderfully conceived, and easily approachable. There is no food snobbery here. The joy of this book, as with Mr. Bittmans columns and his great book "How To Cook Everything" is that it is specifically designed for the home chef. It is for we who really enjoy producing first rate food without being bent out of shape by finding totally esoteric and hard to find ingredients. By the standards set forth in this book it is okay if you want a first rate kitchen and do not own a truffle shaver. Or a caviar chiller. Or a personal killer wine cellar. Or the budget of the former Shah of Iran. But you do have the will to create and experience great food. There are so many things to commend this book: The description that precedes each recipe is invaluable. The recipes themselves are absolutely wonderful. The well thought out and carefully constructed list of basic and more unusual ingredients for the shelf of the home cook is perfectly constructed with sense and with an organization that gives the cook a real understanding of ingredients used in the recipes. From garam masala to Thai Fish Sauce to fresh and dried herbs and spices, all is explained and de-mystified. And the organization of recipes is unusual and well thought out since they are placed within a category according to the method of cooking (IE Braising, roasting, grilling, et al.) Not least in the lexicon of commendations to this huge collection is that we are introduced to foods that are not common to the American home cook, the book is heavily laced with mid and far eastern cuisine, as well as the more familiar French and Italian and other ethnic foods, and thus our repertoire of that which we prepare expands with flavors that are just terrific. Mr. Bittman is also an author with a gift for writing clearly and in a self effacing style that belies his great culinary knowledge and talent. I am never intimidated by his recipes. I am always inspired. Cookbooks just do not get any better than this.

Great Source of Easy Recipes. Just misnamed as usual. Buy It.

`The Best Recipes in the World' by New York Times columnist and leading cookbook author, Mark Bittman promises to be a really great cookbook, and it comes very, very close to fulfilling that promise. First, one very important thing to do is to say what this book is not, as, like many of Bittman's other books, his titles have a way of inflating one's expectations. For starters, the book is much more than those two excellent `best recipe' cookbooks, `The Greatest Dishes' by Anya von Bremzen and `The Cook's Canon' by New York Times alum, Raymond Sokolov. The former gives us only eighty recipes and the latter stops at 101. Both numbers are well within their ambitions of giving us recipes `every good cook should know'. Bittman's objective is to give us a much bigger book with over 1,000 recipes from around the world. Second, this is not a scholarly book in the vein of Paula Wolfert's magnificent studies of various Mediterranean cuisines or even Clifford Wright's study of the whole Mediterranean. And, Bittman makes no pretensions to being scholarly. One drawback of this somewhat personal view of world cuisines is that Bittman does a lot of blurring culinary boundaries which specialists in various regions would prefer to make clear. For example, he highlights only nine (9) culinary regions of Japan and Korea; China; Southeast Asia; India; Greece, The Middle East, and North Africa; France (and Europe in General); Italy; Spain; Mexico and Latin America. I implore you to not take this as any kind of gospel on world culinary regions. I just finished reading Clifford Wright's new book on spicy foods (`Some Like It Hot') and he identifies eleven (11) spicy cuisines which don't even cover half the world. In his divisions, for example, Sichuan and Hunan cooking is different from all other cooking in China and Korean cooking is much different from either nearby Japan and Manchuria. Writers about the Iberian peninsula all say the cooking of Spain and Portugal is really a lot different, based a lot on differences in colonies. Even France and Italy are commonly divided into three and two different culinary regions respectively. This should give you the idea that Bittman's take on culinary geography is very personal. He even violates his own regions by constantly identifying sources of recipes outside his nine regions. He also does not serve some of his regions as well as he might, as, for example, he leaves cocoa out of the list of essential ingredients for Mexican cuisine. Third, Bittman's recipes are not `classic' presentations of various dishes. Bittman is following his `minimalist' muse and using the principle that less is better. He flatly states that he is lazy and will use one ingredient in place of two whenever he can. On the good side, this is not exactly the same as the `Cooks Illustrated' premise that easier is better. Bittman says that there are complicated ways of doing many of these recipes, but I like the simpler way and that is what I give you. T
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