Book Reviews

Book review: Extreme Cuisine – Exotic Tastes from Around the World.

North Americans are squeamish when it comes to food. They prefer prime cuts (rib of beef, steaks, tenderloin) of beef to brains, chicken breast to legs and thighs or feet, salmon to most other fish (easy to eat with very few bones), shrimp and lobster to periwinkle or geoduck.

This anomaly lies in the fact that resource-rich land has provided and continues to provide all kinds of protein in abundance.

Needless to say, fruits and vegetables grow in abundance and are distributed efficiently all over the continent.

Whatever cannot be grown on the continent is imported, except for very unusual foodstuffs for which there seems to be very little demand or government embargos.

Eddie Lin set out to bring to the attention of North American consumers what other nations eat – some out of necessity, others out of curiosity and out of an interest to discover new tastes and textures.

He starts with alligator cheesecake from Louisiana and continues with beef tendons from China, all the way to blood sausage from Germany and Austria, to headcheese (has nothing to do with cheese) in England, and continues with brains, steer testicles, maggot cheese, fugu, chicha, raw chicken, cockscomb, tarantula and witchetty grub.

Each food title contains a picture, followed by a description, where and how it is cooked and how it tastes.

He obviously has an eclectic taste, and was curious enough to travel far and wide to try all the “delicacies” he describes. His interest in the unusual stems, according to him, because his mother fed him pig brains when his friends were enjoying macaroni and cheese.

People like familiar food, and even grown ups, even if interested in unusual dishes, always return to their childhood favourites.

This is a book for all interested in culinary delights, people who like to entertain friends with their experiences, stories, and chefs to find out what other nations like to eat

It is an easy to read, interesting book and will pay rich dividends when meeting friends for dinner parties or receptions or picnics or BBQs.

Hrayr Writer – Hrayr Berberoglu – E-mail – Read his books?
Professor B offers seminars to companies and interested parties on any category of wine, chocolates, chocolates and wine, olive oils, vinegars and dressings, at a reasonable cost.

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