Cheryl and Bill Jamison, authors of Smoke & Spice
and American Home Cooking
among others, have chosen to go industrial size with their latest: The Big Book of Outdoor Cooking and Entertaining
: 850 recipes--200 of them for rubs and sauces. Over 500 pages thick. If ever there was a grilling, barbecuing, smoking, deep-frying kind of cookbook for a Supersized America, this is it, Big Gulp and all.
This is a book that starts at ground zero for cooks who want to grill great meals and put on terrific outdoor parties but don't have a clue how to start charcoal. "Of all the methods of outdoor home cooking, grilling is the most misunderstood. Many people aren't even aware that it's a specific method of cooking, assuming its just a generic term to cover anything done on a grill." The Jamisons take a stand for cooking over direct heat, eschewing the indirect and the covered grill. It's the center of gravity of their book, the element that makes them different than any of the other many books on cooking over open flame.
The rest of the story is found in the recipes, the tips, the sidebars, and asides. A word like bountiful hardly comes close to the impact of this tome. You got your rubs and marinades and the like, and your drinks, your starters, tapas, pizzas (yes, pizzas on the grill), burgers galore, fish and shellfish, poultry, pork, beef, all the other four-leggeds, veggies, grilled salads, side dishes (what's barbecue without sides?), and desserts.
If ever you have wanted to take the plunge into grilling and barbecue, The Big Book of Outdoor Cooking and Entertaining is an all-inclusive, user-friendly place to start. --Schuyler Ingle
From Publishers Weekly
Big" is the operative word in this compendium of recipes from the Jamisons (Good Times, Good Grilling
). Spanning the globe and a range of ingredients, the authors give grillmaster Steven Raichlen a run for his money. The Jamisons devote their first three chapters to explaining the difference between grilling and traditional barbecue, how to build a fire and how to set up an outdoor kitchen with the proper grill, smoker or big-pot cooker. Next are lessons in Seasoning 101 and 102, with 200 recipes for rubs and sauces, and separate instructions for using them on, say, a fish filet or a side of beef. Most of the dishes, like Herb-Coated Mahi-Mahi with Chermoula (Moroccan marinade) Paste; and tacos of Rajas, Corn and Queso de Cabra (rajas are strips of chiles), are impressive but unfussy. There are more than a dozen burgers (with Gorgonzola and crispy prosciutto, for instance), plus pizza, tapas, salads, pastas, vegetarian entrees and desserts—all of which can be cooked and/or eaten outdoors. With variations, party tips and suggested themed menus, the Jamisons have written the script for many memorable nights on the patio. (May)
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