Top critical review
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Sort of an oddball cookbook....
on January 26, 2013
I don't even know where to be begin. This book was very much in need of a food editor and someone other than the author to test the recipes. On the pro side there are a few good recipes (the Savory Flat Rice Noodles are excellent as is the recipe for water spinach) and the photography is lovely, if a bit off. On the con side there are many more problems.
First off, the need for a food editor. The Buckwheat Noodle Soup Recipe? It doesn't call for buckwheat noodles - just regular somen noodles. And the garnishes include raw bitter melon and raw garlic, both of which are overwhelming if you actually eat them uncooked in such a delicate broth. Some of the other recipes seems half finished. The Mushroom Medley Soup calls for inordinate amount of salt along with vegetable stock and soy sauce.
Now for a pet peeve of mine (which may not bother other people) - I want the picture representing the recipe to actually be that recipe. In a rather disproportionate number of photos this isn't the case. There are ingredients in the photo that aren't listed in the recipe and vice versa. I see bean sprouts... not an ingredient, I see red onions... not an ingredient... on the flip side I see an ingredient that should be easily visible and it's not in the picture. As lovely as the photographs are they make me not trust the recipes.
I could not recommend this book for any novice cook but if you are experienced and can spot things out of place it's not a bad purchase. A generous 2.5 stars.