What am I reading these days? Following a hectic but fun holiday season, I have settled down to savor my favorite Christmas gifts – cookbooks or food related books. I have just started to work through my stash of books and these are the three that have my attention at the moment.
Bouchon – By Thomas Keller and published by Artisan Books. Thomas Keller, chef and owner of the very highly regarded French Laundry restaurant in Napa opened more of a bistro type place beside the venerated original. The cookbook features bistro classics but done so superbly right every time. The book is stunning overall with brilliant photos, easy-to-follow recipes, and interesting essays on various aspects of bistro life. From the straightforward but critical recipe for doing french fries just right to the recipe for a succulent roast pork, this is destined to have front billing on my bookshelves for a while. Highly recommended.
Splendid Soups – By James Peterson and published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc. James Peterson is known for his carefully researched tomes on sauces, fish and shellfish, vegetables and has won numerous accolades for this writing. His latest book on soups is equally impressive. It includes the basics for broths and stocks that then go on to showcase a range of soups from all around the globe. There are sections on broths, vegetable, meat, bread and dairy based soups. Each section has a great selection of the best soup recipes from around the globe. I am still reading through this but it is very comprehensive and interesting. Recommended.
The Oxford Companion to Food – By Alan Davidson and published by the Oxford University Press. Compiled over 20 years with painstaking research, I am awed to have all that effort and knowledge in a book just 2-3 inches thick. It is basically one of the best and most informative encyclopaedias on food. A must have in any food lover’s library. Interesting for Filipinos are several entries on filipino foods or dishes that are described in detail, much with the assistance of food experts Doreen Fernandez and others. This is great to just keep by your reading chair when you feel like learning something but only have a minute or two to spare. Highly recommended.