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Customer reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
Falling Cloudberries: A World of Family Recipes
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on 28 October 2017
I'm always on a lookout for inspiration for food, which also includes different takes on dishes I know well. There were quite a few recipes that fall within the former category in this book and I am sorry to say they were all inferior in taste if you've ever tried such dishes cooked for you or served. For all purposes, you'd be better off looking up recipes on the internet. I like the reminiscences woven throughout the book, a charming idea, but all in all I could not recommend the book to anyone on the basis that 4 out of 5 recipes failed to excite anyone.
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on 13 August 2008
I got this book as a christmas present from my sister and brother in law and loved it immediately. It still is one of the most beautiful cookery books I own and I've got about 300 - 400, roughly estimated. But it is not only extremely beautiful, it's also interesting to read (and no, it's not supposed to be a memoir, it says " a world of family recipes" on the front, so it will obviously be mainly about cookery) and the recipes are just great. I'm the queen of cheesecakes at work now, just because of Tessa's marvellous "Ricotta Tart with a Chocolate Crust". The ricotta makes a wonderfully light cake (but if you can't get any just use full fat cream cheese) and the added orange juice and rind give it a fresh moreish taste. People will definitely leave nothing on the plate and ask you for the recipe! Another good thing is that this book offers recipes from quite different parts of the world (due to Tessa's family history): Finland, Greece, Cyprus, South Africa, Italy and some other countries she travelled. Buy it for yourself or as a wonderful present for someone who likes stories and cookery! For me, it's one of the books I'd never part with.
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on 30 March 2010
A beautiful book with lovely photos. The recipes all looked slightly strange to me to begin with....but the more I try the more I love this book! The greek and cypriot recipes are particularly good. I'm cooking every day this week from here, hoping to discover more gems before I go back to work and don't have the luxury of time.
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on 2 November 2013
Tessa Kiros, daughter of a Finnish mother and a Greek Cypriot father, recounts the various flavors of her childhood and adult life (Finland, Greece, South Africa, Italy and beyond). Stories are interwoven into the simple yet delicious recipes and sprinkled with vintage family photographs and luminous photos that highlight the character of the faces and places that make these recipes memorable.

Falling Cloudberries opens with a pencil sketch of Tessa's family tree, complete with a Russian great-great-grandmother, her mother's Finnish relatives, and Tessa's Italian husband. The first chapter is dedicated to Finnish comfort foods such as marinated herrings, smoked salmon, Finnish meatballs with lingonberry jam, and cinnamon and cardamom buns. From Greece we have dolmades, baklava, tzatziki, avgolemono, octopus, and numerous lamb and seafood dishes. Cyprus is the most Middle Eastern of the cuisines, featuring airani (a chilled yogurt drink), grilled haloumi, hummus, lachmajou, tabouli, and koupes.

The chapter on South Africa is a mix of culinary influences that feels right at home in the United States: garlic bread, chicken wings with blue cheese dressing, barbecue, and carrot cake. Italy offers a divine champagne risotto, several pastas, and numerous elegant salads. The final chapter, A Suitcase of Recipes, features influences from farther abroad, including Thailand, Peru, and Morocco.

Tessa's style, both in the memoirs and the recipes themselves, is simple yet elegant. The ingredients and steps are clearly laid out, making Falling Cloudberries approachable even for beginning cooks. Most of the Greek and Italian ingredients should be fairly easy to find in any large supermarket (if you're lucky enough to have a Middle Eastern market in your city, you should be able to find rose water, haloumi and semolina (NOT semolina flour, but sameed, the cracked wheat used in basboosah).

There's a beautiful amount of variety in the endless possibility of mix-and-match dinners borrowing from different regions, or you could plan a theme party (a Finnish dinner, or a Greek one). Vegetarians will find numerous tasty recipes for cold salads (such as the chickpea and feta salad), baked dishes, as well as numerous potato preparations (the stuffed vegetables call for ground meat, but you could substitute rice). I loved the light, elegant desserts in particular, from flaky filo recipes for baklava and bougatsa to elegant shortcakes, chocolate truffle cake and creme caramel. This is a beautiful cookbook with a wealth of recipes that will appeal to cooks of all levels.
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on 18 January 2005
I have loads of cookery books, I'm something of a cookery book addict. I could not resist this one because the photos and overall presentation of the book was mouth-watering. I bought this book just before Christmas and used it all over Christmas. Every recipe I have tried from it has worked beautifully! I made the pineapple upside-down cake for my in-laws and it was fantastic. I have made pineapple cakes in the past but Tessa's recipe includes a caramel sauce that you cook into the cake so that when you turn it upside-down, it makes the cake beautifully moist.
One of my favourite foods is candied yams (sweet potatoes) which I always used to cook in the oven. Tessa's recipe cooks them slowly on the stove top in orange juice which moistens and caramelises at the same time - gorgeous.
Apart from the recipes, what I love about the book is the way the reader is drawn into Tessa's own family history. You are introduced to the members of her family through her family tree and the book is beautifully illustrated with old family photos. This gives the recipes themselves a sense of place and history as the recipes are handed through the family. The author has travelled widely and collected recipes along the way. The food takes the reader on a worldwide journey, experiencing the cuisine of the places she loves.
Tessa says in her introduction, "These are my favourite recipes". They are fast becoming mine, too!
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on 4 January 2012
This book is one of my Christmas cookbook haul (a present from a family member, and it has yet to actually be put on the shelf. More than just a collection of recipes (and they are seriously mouthwatering), this book tells you all the family history and stories behind the food, from child to adult, it is wonderful to read and I can't wait to try out as many of the recipes as possible this year (I did get 7 new cookbooks for Christmas, so it is going to be a full year food-wise!)
There is a wide variety, with recipes from Finland, Cyprus, South Africa, Italy etc, so it is sure to have something foreveryone. I have already been begged to make the fried halloumi recipe (Cyprus) by my partner who remembers enjoying something similar in Greece on a holiday. It does seem to be one of those books that really makes you think about the food you ate growing up as well, and I foresee this becoming a much loved (and probably splattered) member of the 'favourites' shelf at home, if it ever makes it onto the bookcase. It is a rare book where someone else's memories can make you nostalgic, and none of the recipes look to be particularly difficult, just delicious!
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on 9 August 2006
This delightful tome takes the reader on a worldwide journey, experiencing the cuisine of the author's best-loved places.

'Finland still remains a dream; a faraway land where Father Christmas lives and glides here and there with his sleigh, ducking through falling cloudberries and past my mother ice-skating to school.....'

'Falling Cloudberries, A World of Family Recipes' is Tessa's second book, a personal collection of family recipes from around the world.

The exquisite cover opens up to reveal a recipe mix of unusual, exotic tastes and familiar, family favourites.
A family tree introduces Tessa's family members and the book is further enhanced by old family photos. This gives the recipes a sense of place and history as they have been handed down through the generations.

399 thick, high quality matt pages, split over main chapters:

1. Falling Cloudberries (Finland) page 14
2. Oregano, Oranges & Olive Groves (Greece) page 70
3. Cinnamon & Roses (Cyprus) page 144
4. Monkeys' Weddings (South Africa) page 218
5. Washing Lines & Wishing Wells (Italy) page 276
6. Suitcase of Recipes (World) pages 334-385

sandwiched between an introduction entitled 'Food from many Kitchens' and a concise index, concluding with a charming acknowledgment page, entitled 'from Tessa'.
A thin blue satin ribbon keeps your page when you have to put this book down, a book that is arguably 'just a recipe book' but almost demands to be read like a novel, at any time in any place!

The first glimpse of Tessa's unique writing style is captured in her introduction:

'These are the recipes I grew up with; the recipes that have woven their way through the neighbourhoods of my mind, past indifference and into love. Those that have stayed while others might have fluttered away with a gentle spring breeze. These are the ones I choose to share; the ones that special people have taught me and that I have recorded, sometimes over a pot of coffee at my own kitchen table, and sometimes struggling to understand through the barriers of a language on a journey somewhere....
I have always kept my favourite recipes in journals and I hope you will find a place for them among your own tablecloths. Here are the recipes that I love'

and is present throughout at the head of each chapter and within each recipe.

Recipes include:

Fresh Salmon, Dill and Potato Soup
Beef Casserole with Carrots, Onions and Cream
Pork Schnitzels with Sautéed Potatoes
Cranberry Sorbet
Salt Baked Fish with Lemon and Parsley Salad
Lemon & Oregano Chicken
Stuffed Egg-Plants
Spinach Pilaf
Baklava with Nuts & Dried Apricots
Filo Millefeuille with Oranges
Chicken Wings with Blue Cheese Dressing
Barbecued Spare Ribs
Milk Tart
Lemon Crème Brulée
Champagne Risotto
Veal Loin with Mustard, Pancetta & Cabbage
Coffee Granita with Whipped Cream
Couscous Salad
Crème Caramel

'I always long for those lunches that begin anywhere between noon and 5 pm and end only when the owner decides it's time to drag the tables off the beach.................On our way back we are twice blessed - with the haphazard washing lines of octopus silhouettes and a Greek sunset.'
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on 8 September 2006
I have fallen in love with this enchanting book. Just on the basis of a collection of recipes this is still a fantastic book, but this is far more than just a collection of recipes. In Tessa Kiros's Falling Cloudberries she has created an immensely personal journey through different lands and experiences and the resulting eclectic mix of foods and approaches to recipes.

It is an exquisite book both visually (it is of an exceptionally high quality) and through the generosity of Tessa's fascinating biography allowing the recipes she has chosen to really come alive.

I look foward to getting to know this book well. What a treasure and what a treat. You will want to share this book with everyone who is dear to you, as Tessa shares her memories of those who are dear to her.

Thank you Tessa for the wonderful gift that is 'Falling Cloudberries'.
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on 9 October 2005
This is a gorgeous book packed full with interesting things to try from varoius parts of the world. As the author has mixed parentage and has lived in several places around the world it makes this book an ecletic mix of food. All the recipes are easy to follow and so far I have had great results.
This book is a must if photos inspire you to cook as the photography is brilliant.
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on 8 July 2010
I got thei book for myself several years ago as glancing at it in the bookshop it looked nice, good photos etc and had interesting recipes.
When I got it home and began to read it it is far more than that! There is a lovely "holiday" stle to her writing, little stories and annicdotes. She shares hr family and memories with you and then the recipes she was raised with.
I have tried many recipes in the book all of which are now firm family favourites.
they vary from the really simple fish casserole, which surprisingly my kids also love, to thai authentic flavoured tom ka gai....
A must for the cookbook lover but also fun to read even if you never cook from it! I LOVE this book and I have loads of cookbooks...100s!
Highly recommended.
Ive since bought more of her titles but this is definately the best by a long way!
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