Most helpful positive review
5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 14 January 2014
This is a bit of a quirky, charming cookbook with various culinary profiles and bon-mots about entertaining. Yet it is not cliché-central or full of rather patronising advice. Far from it!
In essence Kinfolk magazine, a quarterly journal aimed at featuring understated, unfussy entertaining, has curated a series of recipes and portraits from 45 so-called tastemasters around the world. There is no specific rhyme or reason behind the choice of recipes, other than that they are favourites which are suitable for entertaining - the result being that one gets a fairly eclectic, cosmopolitan mix
This is a book that is designed for browsing. Many engaging photographs help draw you in to the various stories that accompany the recipes. To get the most out of this book you really need to read everything, no skipping over a recipe's introduction or a footnote. It would have been nice to have had a little more "colour" and personalisation from the various contributors as whilst things are not entirely sterile and cold, at times it felt a little stilted or overly-reticent. Fortunately the recipes are well-written, contain all of the relevant information that you might require (including dual measures!) but if you have "middle-aged" eyes you might find the small printed text a bit of a challenge. It would have been nice if the internal navigation of this book was a little better designed, even small things like having to move forward and backwards through the book to tie up a photograph to the recipe are a small, but irritating thing. One hopes that there is a very good, detailed index for this book as this pre-release review copy did not have an index despite the contents page referring to one. A good index is essential
Despite enjoying this book one cannot give a conclusive endorsement for it. The price point and many small things mean that you might really need to spend some time with this in a bookstore and see if you click with it. It has the capacity of being a great cooking companion for you, that is clear.