Saveur: The New Comfort Food: Home Cooking from Around the World
Edited by James Oseland
Chronicle Books (2011)
Reviewed by Irene Watson for Reader Views (5/11)
This cookbook is the best, not only for the wonderful recipes, but a beautiful book in itself. The colorful illustrations of what the end product is to look like, is always an inspiration to me. For the purpose of the review we are asked to test three recipes.
The first recipe I tested was “Veracruz-Style Red Snapper.” I’ve ordered it many times in a Mexican restaurant but never attempted it myself. The sauce was exceptionally tasty and I felt it was even better than I’ve tasted in some of the best restaurants. The jalapeno juice added just enough kick without being overly spicy. The amusing part is that I have a platter with the exact same pattern as the one in the picture, so of course that’s how it got served.
Indian cuisine is one of my favorites but I’ve never attempted to make it myself, so I decided to test “Creamy Spiced Indian Lentils.” The end result was flavorful, slightly spicy, and rich. Served over brown rice it made a great dinner.
The third recipe I tested was “Deep-Fried Southern Catfish.” Living in the south, catfish seems to be a staple and, although not one of my favorite types of fish, I decided to see if I can simulate what is served in restaurants. The accompanying photograph looked very much like what I’ve seen served. And, I must say the dish turned out great; it even looked like the picture. I managed to get catfish from a local market that didn’t taste swampy so now I have an appreciation for deep-fried catfish. Not knowing what the ingredients are for the coating I was surprised to see baking powder added.
I must say this is a terrific “comfort food” cookbook. James Oseland’s compilation of recipes in “Saveaur: The New Comfort Food” makes it one of the best books on the market. I highly recommend it.