Monday, February 23, 2015

Exciting Food for Southern Types by Pellegrino Artusi

Title: Exciting Food for Southern Types

Author: Pellegrino Artusi

Published: Penguin Books, 2011

Pages: 128

Summary:  Pellegrino Artusi is the original icon of Italian cookery, whose legendary 1891 book Science in the Kitchen and the Art of Eating Well defined its national cuisine and is still a bestseller today. 
He was also a passionate gastronome, renowned host and brilliant raconteur, who filled his books with tasty recipes and rambunctious anecdotes. From a proud defense of the humble meat loaf, to digressions on the unusual history of ice-cream, the side-effects of cabbage and the Florentines' weak constitutions, these writings brim with gossip, good cheer and an inexhaustible zest for life.  (Taken from Goodreads)
Thoughts: As soon as I found these Penguin Great Foods books, I knew that I had to read all of them.  The first one I had the pleasure of reading is Exciting Food for Southern Types which is all about Italian cooking. 
Not only are there recipes in this book but also little anecdotes about some food dishes and people's experiences with them.  I just found them really nice to read about as the stories were really funny.  This book is definitely worth a read.

I thought it was quite interesting reading this book in its historical context with how it talks about not preparing a certain type of bird in the summer because it won't preserve properly, and all of the cooking is done over a flame or in a dutch oven which, is just interesting to read about how food was prepared in the late 1800's.

I also just feel the need to mention the design of the book.  The cover is textured and the pattern on the cover actually feels a bit like a pattern on a dinner plate, which I thought was just the coolest thing.

While a lot of the recipes are things I would probably never try and some contain birds I haven't really heard of, there were a couple of recipes that sounded really good.  I especially liked the sound of a sponge cake recipe which wouldn't be too bad to try and make.

As a first introduction to the Penguin Great Reads books, I'm quite impressed and looking forward to reading all of the other books in the series to just learn more about different styles of cooking and different foods from different countries and different time periods.

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