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Ancient Grains for Modern Meals: Mediterranean Whole Grain Recipes for Barley, Farro, Kamut, Polenta, Wheat Berries & More Hardcover – 15 Apr 2011


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press (15 April 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1580083544
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580083546
  • Product Dimensions: 21.2 x 2.3 x 26.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 324,234 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

By Diana Oldacre on 3 Feb. 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I couldn't agree LESS with the previous review. This is one of the most inspiring cook books I have seen in a long while (and the first I have ever felt strongly enough about to review!). I am actually reading it from start to finish as I would a novel or biography. The book starts with an overview of the ingredients, especially the seeds themselves, and how to cook them. Maria also writes about her childhood experiences in Germany and Greece, where her Mother and Grandmothers taught her the pleasures of a food tradition rich in nuts, fruits and grains. She has adapted these recipes to suit our twenty-first century lifestyle, and the result is a delight.
If you have access to a reasonably efficient healthfood shop there should be no trouble finding the ingredients, and the cooking methods are simple to follow. So far, I have only cooked a few of the recipes, but all the results have been quite splendid - Warm Oat Berries with Walnuts and Gorgonzola was a real hit with my family; we ate it with a grilled Tuna steak and green veg - delicious! I can't wait to try some more.
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By poppy tai gabb on 14 May 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Great book for any home kitchen
Quality pressing and brilliant recipes
Used in my kitchen daily
Very happy
My Recommendation to everyone
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By Mrs. L. Battersby on 29 Dec. 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Fascinating book.
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 4 Jan. 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Had high hopes for this book that it would have a wide range of down to earth meals using these grains in a variety of ways. sadly it like one of those cooking shows it looks pretty but you are just never going to cook the meals.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 74 reviews
93 of 95 people found the following review helpful
Whole Grains for Gourmets 12 Jun. 2011
By Dr. Karin M. Anderson - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
At the first glance, Maria Speck's book not only pleases by its appetizing photos, but, also, by its clear, user friendly design. A mixture of biographical anecdotes, helpful comments and tempting recipes - don't worry, the recipes are the main part - the book is very well written, funny, not only instructive, but also entertaining.
Reading it, I had several "Aha" moments - the author (who grew up in Germany and Greece) doesn't shy away from rich ingredients like butter, bacon, or a shot of booze, but believes that "food has to be mouthwatering" and "eating is about pleasure first, and dieting last". And her recipes really live up to that credo!
I served the "Brie Cakes with Sun-Dried Tomatoes" to my rather skeptical husband who, after the first forkful, turned into an ardent "believer". The oat based burgers, seasoned with roasted pine nuts, rosemary and sage, were absolutely amazing! Being an avid baker, I also tried the "Greek Walnut-Barley Cake", Lemon-Rosemary Scones" and "Orange Scented Scones with Dark Chocolate" - all were delicious.
The instructions are very clear and easy to follow, even for iffier steps (like handling very sticky dough), and, for people like me, who don't like it too sweet, there is no necessity to cut down on sugar or honey - the seasoning is just right.
This is really a cookbook that takes the scary (and Puritan!) out of whole grain cooking.
73 of 75 people found the following review helpful
By far, my favorite new cookbook! 20 Jun. 2011
By Peace, Love, Vegan - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I am absolutely in love with cookbooks. As a general rule my grandma once told me, it's worth buying a cookbook if you get 2 or 3 unique new recipes you can go to regularly. Now, I usually don't buy cookbooks that aren't vegan specific but I could not pass this one up. The salads section alone has been worth the money and are already vegan (aside from some added cheese or butter which is easy to substitute or omit).

I've made the salad on the cover, which is delicious with a garlic marinated tofu slice, and we've made this recipe twice in 2 weeks. The recipe that really sold the book for me was the Bittersweet Koliva that you can see in the Amazon "Look Inside"feature. I made this for my Greek friend from Thessaloniki (where the author is from) and she LOVED it! It's a very unique sweet grain dish that I never would have thought of on my own. And a little tip, I substituted the raisins and dragees for ribbons of toasted coconut. So delicious!

I highly recommend this book so anyone and everyone! It has creative recipes that I never could have imagines and they are so simple and wholesome. Though I have only tried a few of these ancients grains, they have become the new staples in my diet (plain brown rice is out! haha). What's also great is that it is a healthy but delicious book that's great for vegetarians, carnists, and vegans alike!

If you're on the fence about getting this book, try some of the recipes you can see in the "Look Inside" feature (this is a good tip for any cookbook you might want on Amazon) and see if yourself how worthwhile it would be to have. I hope you all enjoy it as much as I do.
48 of 49 people found the following review helpful
Delicious, 100% Whole Grains 5 May 2011
By S. Nasser - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I've enjoyed everything I've tried from this book so far. There are a lot of interesting combinations of Mediterranean flavors to try. The recipes strike a nice balance between being fully detailed, so that you can follow them exactly if you wish, and being adaptable, so that you can take the inspiration provided and adapt it to your tastes and supplies.

This is a very good-looking book, with nice page layout and lovely photographs.

I love that the recipes, including the baked goods, all use 100% whole grains--no hidden white flour.
71 of 78 people found the following review helpful
a little disappointed; title is a little misleading 24 Aug. 2011
By Milic - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
i was really looking forward to finding lots of recipes using whole grains, or "berries", as the author calls them, but i found that many of the recipes only use whole grain flour, and not the whole grain. there is only 1 recipe for amaranth and buckwheat, and 3 for quinoa, for example. the recipes look good, but it's not what i was expecting.
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
This book lowered my husbands blood sugar 11 April 2012
By anne - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The recipes in this book are to die for. At least all of the ones I have tried. But the big thing is the more I cook with all of these grains the better my husbands blood sugar gets. So this is really a winner of a book. The she brings these grains together in such wonderful combinations. I think everyone who wants to starting eating whole grains should buy this book. It is eating the whole grains that affects the blood sugar. The bread (are great) but do not shift the blood sugar as much. I just cannot say enough about this book.
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