File Size: 202145 KB
Print Length: 256 pages
Publisher: Ten Speed Press (September 20, 2016)
Publication Date: September 20, 2016
After a nod to true Cuban cooking—with traditional recipes for rice and beans, lechon, black bean soup, a great mojo recipe, an equally great picadillo—this prepare book soon evolves into the authors’ “takes” on Cuban cooking: Squid printer ink empanadas with a filling of lobster; black bean burgers on soft burger buns; a take on a jibarito sandwich from a Chicago Puerto Rican restaurant, and many more.
What? Did these three authors deem that true recipes and stories from Cuban kitchens would be too dull? After all, despite the rise of “Organoponicos”, (organic farmers providing specialized/unique ingredients to enhance what is traditionally at hand), the backbone of Cuban cooking is not spice-laden. Beans, rice, chicken breast, fish, goat, onions, garlic clove, bay leaves, marjoram, cumin is exactly what it’s really all about in the Cuban kitchen.
Seems that the majority of these recipes could be found in Cuban restaurants—for visitors—and not in the normal Cuban home kitchen.
The stories that I read in this book are not the stories of Cuban residents, they are the travel stories of the three trips these three people took to Cuba……Not quite what I expected….. But I thoroughly enjoyed looking at the pictures. (Too bad there are no captions! )
While I appreciated the creativity, I would have adored to have seen the use of true Cuban ingredients. For example, there are not scallops easily available to the Cuban locals, are there? Why a Shrimp and Scallop Seviche recipe, when a dolphin fish seviche recipe would have recently been appropriate?
Besides some creative, new combinations of components, there are some “old hat” quality recipes added too, too: Langoustines with chile, garlic and lime green; sugarcane skewers; jicama slaw; grilled octopus, to name a few.
Paella menu is baked in an oven, not over fireplace, (quite a disappointment for me….. ).
The Containers & Pans chapter comprised the greatest proportion of worthy recipes in the book. A chicken stew with sour juices, corn, garlic, capers and olives, is quite good.
Pureed Plantain Soup is worthwhile—except for the ridiculous idea of being able to substitute parsnips for plantains….. That idea made me personally think that these authors really do not understand Cuban ingredients.
I would have expected to see more goat recipes. The average goat stew recipe is included.
Typically the Cuban Fried Chicken menu is a keeper; so is the Crispy Twice-Cooked Lamb.
The cake quality recipes and the drinks at the ending of the book are quite good, too.
Page layout is easy enough to follow. Directions could be somewhat better in places. Ingredient listings leave questions. Index is decent.
*I received a free, short-term ARC backup of this book from the publisher., I love this cookbook! There is currently a great deal interest in Cuba and this guide only adds to it. Even though the recipes and photographs look solid, the stories only fuel my desire to make a trip there. It has such a vivid cover that you may not help but be attracted to it. Not only will I apply it for the recipes but it's heading to look great on display inside my kitchen. I actually hope my friends avoid read this review because it will spoil the surprise when they all get one over the holidays!, Beautiful book. Can't wait to start out using the recipes., Love, Love this cookbook.. the recipes are fabulous, trying them one by one! Each one is a lot better than the next. And the photography is gorgeous, creating a sense of being in Cuba, and this cookbook draws me personally to travel to Cuba! Great job to all on a wonderful cookbook, this is the present I will be giving for everyone on my present listing! So ensure you have all the necessary ingredients in your kitchen to wow your dinner guests!!, This is so much more then a cookbook. They do have lots of recipes which one would expect but the photographs are beautiful and there are stories. We don't have had a lot of info about Cuba but this is everything and more. I went through it page by page and I was so impressed with all of it. It is a glimpse into the culture while offering us some great quality recipes. I will be suggesting this to any or all my friends and buying it as gifts for Christmas. Purchase this book. You will not regret it and the price is very reasonable. Thanks to any or all involved in this book., Dan Goldberg, Andrea Kuhn and Jody Eddy made three trips to Cuba to the actual research, cooking and photographs for their cookbook ¡ Cuba! Recipes and Stories from the Cuban Kitchen. These people planned to give attention to the paladores, underground kitchens using bootleg ingredients. However, they were overrun by tourists, so they really instead turned to family cooking in the dining rooms of everyday Cubans. This decision adds an authenticity and informality to the food.
The photographs are stunning, particularly the photographs of the people, their homes and the kitchens. I also loved the photographs of the sea. The photographs of the food had this authenticity and simpleness that set them apart from most cookbooks. The only false notes came from the shots of several dishes on a table at once. They looked so much the same therefore much on trend. A person know what I mean, plenty of food, spilled natural herbs, nuts, and deliberate messiness. It’s done over and over and over in book after book and usually works. However, that dumping the food all over the table messiness is an expression of wealth and privilege and hits a false note when representing the humble foods of folks who make an art form of making do.
This cookbook is as much coffee desk book as recipe series. Every page is a picture. The text is printed on photos, some of them pictures of painted walls with peeling paint. In others, the text gloves around elements of the photo. It makes an extraordinarily beautiful book. Visually, this book is a banquet.
The recipes are excellent, centering on simple ingredients that are left out for obvious resons. There are few recipes which may have long listings of ingredients. There is not the abundance to indulge in that kind of cooking, instead a lttle bit of salt, oil and roasting draw out the natural simple flavors of good ingredients.
I found personally feeling irritated, however, with Eddy’s frequent mentions of the oppressive Castro program without even once mentioning the embargo. This is fundamentally dishonest and discredits the excellent work that went into researching the recipes and taking the photos. She repeatedly discussions about the limited entry to ingredients, to meat, the poverty and deprivation, the need to repair, not replace and on and on and. Along with all that discussion of deprivation without even once using the word embargo is a massive failure of honesty. Telling the truth about the effects of the embargo will not reason or diminish the regime’s restrictions on liberty, personal speech and on the arts. It damages the writer’s credibility and does a disservice to the people of Cuba and the readers.
I was provided a review copy of ¡ Cuba! Recipes and Tales from the Cuban Cooking area by Blogging For Books.
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