The Georgian Feast: The Vibrant Culture and Savory Food of the Republic of Georgia Paperback – 6 Dec 2013
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From the Inside Flap
"If you've got Georgia on your mind, then The Georgian Feast is required reading. This superbly written book is part ethnography, part geography, and part cookbook. Ms. Goldstein describes the rugged topography and turbulent history of this region that was once a crossroad of trade between Asia and Europe. These cultural influences, along with a healthy variety of food-producing environments, have led to a rich native cuisine."--Anthony Dias Blue, host of Blue Lifestyle"Nobody writes better about discovering culture in a kitchen than Darra Goldstein, and few are as adventurous or knowledgeable as she in searching out kitchens to explore. What a treat it is to revisit the people and places of a country Darra first revealed to us two decades ago, when our food-culture maps, as well as our geographic ones, were smaller. To join her in celebrating the feasts of Georgia is a very good way to celebrate the art and nature of the human heart, mind and spirit."--Betty Fussell, author of Masters of American Cookery "One part long-simmering history, two parts recipes, The Georgian Feast is an ode to walnuts, pomegranates, yogurt, and fresh herbs, from everyday cheese kneaded with mint to feast-day whole suckling pig."--Phyllis Richman, former Washington Post restaurant critic
About the Author
Darra Goldstein is Willcox and Harriet Adsit Professor of Russian at Williams College and founding editor of Gastronomica: The Journal of Food and Culture. She has consulted for the Council of Europe as part of an international group exploring ways in which food can be used to promote tolerance and diversity and is the author of a number of books, including A Taste of Russia and The Winter Vegetarian.
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Top customer reviews
The book is really enjoyable to read through. It explains about the history of Georgia and where it's food traditions come from, as well as the author's experience of travelling in Georgia, before getting into the recipes. These first sections might be overly long for people who just want the recipes, but I enjoyed them.
The recipes themselves are generally really accessible and easy to follow, and are really tasty as well. Ingredients that you can only really get in Georgia have been sensibly substituted for things you can easily get hold of in the West - although a small criticism is that the book caters to a US audience and some of the words and ingredients used aren't as immediately recognisable in the UK as they are across the pond.
However, the recipes are generally excellent, and quite a bit different to food here while still remaining appealling - from a book of a completely unfamiliar ethnic cuisine, the only one I wouldn't want to try is the tripe soup!
Although a fair bit of the book focuses on meat, there's also an emphasis on the importance of vegetables in Georgian cuisine and it'd be a good book to get if you regularly have to cook for a veggie.
The only thing I'd really change about this book is the lack of photos - as Georgian cuisine is generally unfamiliar to most of us, an idea of what the food is meant to look like would be much appreciated. However, don't let this put you off as the recipes are easy enough to follow.
Only complaint (not bog enough to deduct a whole star) is glossary at the end. Could be a bit more extensive and needs more through checking.
However, there is no better book in English on the subject.
Just ordered my third and fourth copies. First two migrated from my library, third one will make a gift. Fourth one is mine.
The book is of course American, so the names and addresses of suppliers of Geogian ingredients will not be of much use to British readers, but otherwise, no complaints.
The book itself is excellent. I had also bought "The Classic Cuisine of Soviet Georgia" and this newer book is just as good. Like its predecessor, it is comprehensive in it's coverage of dishes i.e. all the recipes you expect to see are there, as well as many others. There is also plenty of deep, scholarly research and background information on Georgia, it's people and traditions.
It well deserves its Julia Child book of the year award. Highly recommended for those wishing to try delicious Georgian food.
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