Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta)
3 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
A great book for the well educated chile-enthusiast!31 janvier 2010
Timothy B. Riley
- Publié sur Amazon.com
Having traveled quite a bit in my life I've noticed how cultures all around the world prize their locally grown chile peppers. From India to Africa and from China to Cuba, they all have chile peppers that they believe are the best in the world. I am not sure that most people (even those in the afore mentioned countries with the expection of Cuba) realize that chiles are a new world agricultural find. Columbus brought them back to Spain then the Spanish and the Portuguese spread them across the globe.
I have read several books about the history of capsicum (the botanical word for the family) but none that went into as much detail as this one did. At times I felt that the author spent too much time with the minute details of where particular species of capsicum came from and where and when they arrived in other parts of the world. However, for the chile enthusiast who wants to know it all this is a very well researched book.
As always, I am dissappointed when a book like this one does not use photographs. The Pepper Trail does have some drawings and graphics but I would like it better if there were some photos of the peppers and of the dishes that were included in the recipe section. All in all I enjoyed this book and give it 4 stars.
Outstanding resource30 décembre 2012
- Publié sur Amazon.com
It's hard to believe that chilis, hot peppers in general, were known exclusively in South and Meso-America until Columbus brought them back to Europe. Since then, cuisines all over Europe, Africa, the mid-East, Asia, and Pacifica have adopted them, naturalized them, and incorporated them so deeply into native cuisine that chilis seem to have been there forever.
Andrews starts the book with brief descriptions, region by region, of how the peppers arrived at their new homes. Next, she gives a brief tour of the pepper zoo, talking about everything from the sweet bell peppers and pimentos to incendiary Scotch bonnets and habaneros. Instead of photos, skillful drawings represent each variety (hard to believe they're mostly the same species), clearly representing the distinctive form of each without distracting detail. After these introductions, she describes the less familiar ingredients that complement capiscum in various dishes. Although I've seen such ingredient lists before, seeing samples from such a wide sweep of cuisines gives this listing a distinctly cosmopolitan sense.
Then come the recipes themselves. In no particular order, you'll see Indian curries, Thai and Chinese specialties, Tex-Mex, South American, and more - sometimes with three nationalities represented on a single page. These include not just the things you'd expect, but new takes on favorites like vichysoisse and even brownies. Literally, everything from soup to nuts. (Although not in this book, my own kitchen produces honey-glazed walnuts with rosemary and cayenne, very good for making friends.) Andrews's thorough research shows in the thick bibliography at the end, where scientific and historical references seem to outnumber culinary sources.
If you love food, it's easy to pick up a cookbook and leaf through it, looking for the gems hidden somewhere among the recipes. But, since this provides so much historical and botanical background, even non-foodies can find something of interest, tracing how different trading and political empires expanded world-wide, bringing the oldest documented spice with them. A captivating resource, in many ways.