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Field Guide to Herbs & Spices Paperback – January 1, 2006


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Field Guide to Herbs & Spices + Field Guide to Produce: How to Identify, Select, and Prepare Virtually Every Fruit and Vegetable at the Market + Field Guide to Meat
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Product Details

  • Series: Field Guide
  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Quirk Books (January 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1594740828
  • ISBN-13: 978-1594740824
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 4.6 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #102,569 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This handy pocket-sized reference, a virtual dictionary of herbs and spices, is small enough to tote along to the farmer's market, grocery or specialty spice store, and might just contain everything you ever wanted to know about seasonings. Each alphabetically listed entry includes alternate names in different languages and cuisines; explanations of the herb or spice's history, origins, aroma, flavor, physical appearance or other facts; information on storage; and a valuable section on "Food Affinities," which will help cooks understand what flavors go well together (for instance, horseradish goes nicely with "apple, beet, corned beef, cream, cream cheese, ham, lemon, potato, pumpernickel bread, raw seafood, roast beef, salmon, sour cream [and] vinegar"). Each entry also contains serving suggestions or recipes; the cannabis listing, for example, explains that fresh green marijuana leaves may be dipped into melted butter, sprinkled with salt and eaten. Other unusual profiles include those of MSG, a flavor enhancer; pink pepper; and asafetida, a "strong-smelling, even stinking, dried brownish resin" that can be unpleasant to the uninitiated. Recipes are indexed separately, which means that this great tool also doubles as a cookbook. An extensive photo insert will help shoppers identify ingredients. (Apr.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Aliza Green is a chef, food writer, and teacher based in Philadelphia. She is the author of Field Guide to Produce and Field Guide to Meat.

More About the Author

Aliza Green, the Philadelphia-based cookbook author, journalist and pioneering chef, is the author of thirteen highly successful cookbooks including her newest, The Soupmaker's Kitchen, to be published July 1st and available now for pre-sale on Amazon. Her Making Artisan Pasta, a step-by-step full color guide to making a world of fresh pasta has been garnering outstanding reviews and strong sales. It was selected by Cooking Light Magazine as one of its Top 100 Cookbooks of the Last 25 Years--quite an honor in a field of thousands!

Researching Making Artisan Pasta in Italy inspired Green to gather a small group of food lovers to explore the Southern Italian region of Puglia, which she calls, "land of 1,000-year-old olive trees", in a tour taking place October 2 to 9, 2013. The group will be visiting wineries, experiencing the region's best and most authentic restaurants, markets, and artisan food producers, exploring world cultural sites, and will join in two cooking classes. For details, visit WWW.ALIZAGREEN.COM and click on the Puglia tour page.

Green's book, The Butcher's Apprentice, (Quarry Books, 2012) contains fascinating interviews with a rancher raising Japanese Wagyu cattle, a couple who produce Italian-quality prosciutto in Iowa because that's where the pigs are, a Jewish deli owner, a "new wave" hunter, a humane slaughterhouse designer, and an chef in Umbria who serves only meat from her family's farm. Interspersed are clear, full-color step by step techniques for cutting and trimming various types and cuts of meat and poultry that even the novice will be confident enough to try.

The perfect companion book is her Field Guide to Meat: How to Identify, Select, and Prepare Virtually Every Meat, Poultry, and Game Cut (Quirk Books 2005) earned top praises from Food & Wine and Real Simple.

The Fishmonger's Apprentice (Quarry Books 2011) is full of step by step techniques for working with everything from geoduck to swordfish, from abalone to crayfish, flatfish and round fish. Interviews with experts in fishing like the five Portuguese families who started the sustainable American Albacore Tuna Association, a third-generation lobsterman from Maine, the manager of the Honolulu wholesale fish auction, and person who runs London's Billingsgate Fish Market, which has been in continuous operation for over 1,000 year! The book comes with a DVD showing Aliza preparing a dozen fish and seafood dishes plus recipes from renowned chefs.

Field Guide to Produce: How to Identify, Select, and Prepare Virtually Every Fruit and Vegetable at the Market (Quirk Books 2004), was recommended by the New York Times, Men's Health, and Shape and has sold over 50,000 copies. Her personal favorite is Field Guide to Herbs & Spices (Quirk Books 2006), a compact guide to common but also rare and unusual spices from around the world. Field Guide to Seafood (Quirk Books 2007) is a complete guide to choosing fish and shellfish, whether you live in the US or abroad. The series of four food field guides is a must on the shelves of food writers, editors, and culinary students.

Her masterly Starting with Ingredients: Quintessential Recipes for the Way We Really Cook was published to outstanding reviews. With over 550 recipes and detailed, practical, information about the background, culture, history, and uses of 100 important ingredients, this book flies off the shelves in the United Stated and Canada. Starting with Ingredients: Baking does for baking what the first book did for general cooking in 60 chapters. Find uncommon international recipes, detailed ingredient information, and dozens of invaluable tips.

¡Ceviche!: Seafood, Salads, and Cocktails With a Latino Twist (Running Press 2001), which Green co-authored with chef Guillermo Pernot, received a James Beard Award for "Best Single Subject Cookbook." Her book, The Bean Bible: A Legumaniac's Guide to Lentils, Peas, and Every Edible Bean on the Planet! (Running Press 2000), was described by Booklist as "a comprehensive guide to the world of beans and bean cookery belongs in every cookbook collection." When Running Press re-released it as as Beans: More than 200 Delicious, Wholesome Recipes from Around the World with new photographs and recipes, the book appeared in a New York Times feature on top holiday cookbooks.

The beautiful oversized book, Georges Perrier: Le Bec-Fin Recipes (Running Press 1997) features a collection of recipes from Philadelphia's landmark restaurant that Green co-wrote with the renowned French chef.

Green has conducted numerous cooking classes, had many television appearances and radio interviews, and is a highly reputed television and print food stylist. As one of the pioneer chefs who helped make the city of Philadelphia a dining destination, Green began her career in the mid-1970's as Executive Chef at the renowned Ristorante DiLullo, where her culinary achievements landed the restaurant a prestigious four-star rating. In 1988, The Philadelphia Inquirer inducted Chef Green into its Culinary Hall of Fame, citing her as one of the ten most influential people in the city's food industry for her uncompromising efforts at working with local farmers.

Green cites her childhood, which she spent traveling and living abroad, as the inspiration for her culinary pursuits. She has been reading about, writing about and preparing and perfecting food for most of her life. Today, Green spends her time writing food guides and cookbooks, consulting to restaurants and institutional food service providers, teaching, and leading culinary tours.

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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This book on herbs is very well written and complete.
Douglas F. Williams
One difference between this book and the field guide to produce is that each herb and spice entry features a recipe.
Jessica Mallon
This is the perfect companion to Ms. Green's "Field Guide to Produce."
Grandma Linn

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

29 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Lynn Harnett VINE VOICE on May 10, 2006
Format: Paperback
Part of a series which also includes guides to Produce, Meat, Cocktails and Stains, this useful and attractive little book contains a wealth of information on herbs from Angelica to Wild Lime Leaf and spices from Ajwain to Wasabi.

Set up like a field guide - with color plates in the center, along with the guide to the icons - each entry includes Other Names, General Description, Season, Purchase and Avoid, Storage, and Recipe.

Anyone who glances at this will find a place for it on the kitchen shelf. The recipes alone are likely to win you over, from Creole Mustard Sauce (mustard seed), Carrot Currant Salad (rosemary) and Veal with Myrtle. For those who want to try Shrimp with Calamint, say, or Indian Naan with Negella Seeds, online sources are listed at the back of the book.

The entries themselves are packed with information from origins and history to special preparations and seasonal considerations. A truly terrific little book.

--Portsmouth Herald
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By redslam on July 16, 2006
Format: Paperback
My favorite feature of this guide is the flavor affinities list for each item. The affinities list helps with menu planning and gives you more options for the spice or herb's use. The fact that this book has actual recipes rather than serving suggestions is a bonus. I have a couple of other herb/spice guides, but am most taken with this one.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Pegleg the Pirate on January 22, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Whether you are a new or experienced cook - this is a great companion on food shopping trips.

Of course, you shop to a recipe that you're planning to serve - right?

Once you've decided WHAT you're going to serve, this handy guide helps you recognize the Herbs and Spices you need for your recipe.
It just doesn't get any easier.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By RazorLV on April 7, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Book is really what it's title says - Field guide.
It have a lot of useful info about seasonings.

You definitely would found something you didn't know in this book.

It's size is small enough to take with you when you go to market.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By New Kindle User on January 5, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book it's nice and compact, which makes it a nice companion when going grocery shopping. Also includes recipes for quick reference in how to use the fresh herbs :)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Jessica Mallon on September 11, 2010
Format: Paperback
I agree that the flavor affinities featured in this book make it an outstanding resource. This book is essential for anyone who grows or uses fresh herbs. One difference between this book and the field guide to produce is that each herb and spice entry features a recipe. This book makes a great gift to anyone who enjoys cooking fresh, flavorful food.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Douglas F. Williams on August 30, 2009
Format: Paperback
This book on herbs is very well written and complete. It makes good reading as it is entertaining as well as informative. I highly recommend this book, even if you have others on the same subject.............DFW
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Grandma Linn on December 28, 2008
Format: Paperback
A recently widowed friend remarked she knew nothing about seasoning because only a few bland recipes had been acceptable for so many years. This book was the perfect gift, an introduction to informally testing out new flavors. By making groaning shelves at the market appear inviting rather than intimidating, the bright photos and common sense advice remove the mystery, making it fun to "play" in the kitchen.
This is the perfect companion to Ms. Green's "Field Guide to Produce."
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