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The Oxford Companion to Food 3/e (Oxford Companions) Hardcover – 21 Aug 2014

4.6 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 960 pages
  • Publisher: OUP Oxford; 3 edition (21 Aug. 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0199677336
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199677337
  • Product Dimensions: 27.9 x 5.1 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 98,756 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

bought up to date for a new generation of food lovers. (The Countryman)

Every chef should have this immensely interesting reference tome (Daily Express)

every food lover should have a copy (Christopher Hirst, Book of the Year 2014, Independent)

The formost food reference resource (Cake Craft and Decoration)

Open any page and luxuriate in Davidsons wisdom and wit (Best books of the year 2014, Guardian)

funny and illuminating in equal measure (The Taster)

Widely regarded as the best food reference book in the world. (Tom Shingler, Great British Food)

The wondrousness of this reference book ... cannot be overstated (Olive Magazine)

There's nothing else like it. It's an encyclopaedia of food that manages to be both erudite and witty and utterly engrossing. I can't stop reading it. If you haven't come across this book yet, you're missing out. (Delicious Magazine)

Stern discipline has to be exercised when using The Oxford Companion to Food for reference purposes. A clear warning should be printed at the beginning advising those who consult it that whole mornings can easily be frittered away, as the reading of an entry relevant to one's topic of research leads facinatingly to a chain of others, not quite so pertinent ... The Companion remains an erudite and essential volume for anyone seriously interested in food. (Lizzie Collingham, The Times Literary Supplement)

The Companion remains an erudite and essential volume for anyone seriously interested in food. (Times Literary Supplement)

The greatest food reference book in existence, The Oxford Companion to Food, is back for a third edition, wonderfully edited as ever by Tom Jaine. From aardvark to zwieback (a German rusk), this delectable, elegant and learned tome has it all. Despite 43 new entries, as well as 250 amendments and alterations, the wit, erudition and eclecticism of Alan Davidson's original masterpiece remain. (Tom Parker Bowles, Mail on Sunday)

Whether looking up a particular article, reading articles out loud on a rainy afternoon ... or opening a random page to see where it will take me, the guide entertains and educates. Its a great addition to the bookshelf and my first destination for food-related information. (Caroline von Schmalensee, Edinburgh Foodie)

in 'The Oxford Companion to Food' I'm detecting a certain dry humour as well which makes it very enjoyable to read. (Hayley Anderton, Shiny New Books)

It is a book that no serious foodie should be without... (Helen Peacocke, Oxford Times)

Packed with fascinating facts and random information. (Chocablog)

From the Inside Flap

First published in 1999, the ground-breaking Oxford Companion to Food was an immediate success and won prizes and accolades around the world. Its blend of serious food history, culinary expertise, and entertaining serendipity, was and remains unique.

Interest in food, cooking, and the culture surrounding food has grown enormously in the intervening period, as has the study of food and food history. University departments, international societies, and academic journals have sprung up dedicated to exploring the meaning of food in the daily lives of people around the world, alongside an ever-increasing number of articles, books, programmes, and websites in the general media devoted to the discussion of food, making the Oxford Companion to Food more relevant than ever.

Already a food writing classic, this Companion combines an exhaustive catalogue of foods, be they biscuits named after battles, divas or revolutionaries; body parts (from nose to tail, toe to cerebellum); or breads from the steppes of Asia or the well-built ovens of the Mediterranean; with a richly allusive commentary on the culture of food, expressed in literature and cookery books, or as dishes peculiar to a country or community.

While building on the Companion's existing strengths, Tom Jaine has taken the opportunity to update the text and alert readers to new perspectives in food studies. There is new coverage of attitudes to food consumption, production and perception, such as food and genetics, food and sociology, and obesity. New entries include terms such as convenience foods, drugs and food, Ethiopia, leftovers, medicine and food, pasta, and many more. There are also new entries on important personalities who are of special significance within the world of food, among them Clarence Birdseye, Henri Nestlé, and Louis Pasteur.

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Top Customer Reviews

By Uncle Barbar TOP 100 REVIEWER on 21 Oct. 2014
Format: Hardcover
There are so many reasons to have a copy of this on your shelf, but do be sure the shelf is big and strong because it's enormous! This is the only disadvantage - I do have trouble lifting off the shelf. It can be used as a straight forward reference book or it can be read through to glean fascinating snippets of odd history and anthropology. The inimitable Alan Davidson's writing style makes this reference book unique. I love his rye asides just as much as the interesting entries. He covers pretty much anything you would ever be called upon to eat -- and I mean anything. He discusses the history of the food, interesting facts connected with it and various ways of preparing it. Highly recommended.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
How lucky that I discovered this book this year, when the third edition was published. It's great fun flipping the pages at random, but it's proven useful for finding answers to specific questions. (That said, I discovered a simple error right off the bat -- America celebrates Thanksgiving on the fourth Thursday of November, not the third as written; and, yes, I know, this is of little importance -- which means if I need to be absolutely sure of something I read, I will likely double-check the information.)

Delightful writing style, tidbits of information, and heft!
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Bought as a present for my wife (a chef) she was delighted, my daughter (also a chef) is dropping massive hints about her birthday that is coming up. A resounding success from people who know.
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Some of the pages are blurred and difficult to read - would have probably noticed this if I had picked it up in a bookshop!
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Excellent encyclopedia for very keen food lovers
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