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Memories of Philippine Kitchens Hardcover – November 1, 2006

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Frequently Bought Together

Memories of Philippine Kitchens + The Adobo Road Cookbook: A Filipino Food Journey-From Food Blog, to Food Truck, and Beyond [Filipino Cookbook, 99 Recipes] + The Filipino Cookbook: 85 Homestyle Recipes to Delight Your Family and Friends
Price for all three: $59.48

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Both Philippines natives, Amy Besa and Romy Dorotan own and operate Cendrillon, a popular restaurant they opened in New York in 1995, where Dorotan is the highly acclaimed chef.

Neal Oshima is the principal photographer of more than two dozens books on Philippine and Asian culture, seven of which have won Philippine National Book Awards. He lives in the Philippines.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 232 pages
  • Publisher: Stewart, Tabori and Chang; First Edition edition (November 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1584794518
  • ISBN-13: 978-1584794516
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 1.2 x 10.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #896,816 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

75 of 78 people found the following review helpful By B. Marold HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on December 18, 2006
Format: Hardcover
`Memories of Philippine Kitchens' by husband and wife restaurateurs, Amy Besa and Romy Dorotan is, with a few important differences, cut from the same mold as the two latest books from another husband and wife team, writer Naomi Duguid and photographer Jeffrey Alford. The major difference is that while Duguid and Alford are exceptionally talented journalistic `outsiders', Besa and Dorotan are writing from well inside the Philippine cuisine, both being natives of the Philippines, albeit now working in a Manhattan restaurant specializing in Philippine cuisine.

I'm especially interested in this book, as I lived and cooked in a Philippine household for almost three years, with my first experience being that old war-horse, `The Philippine Cookbook' by Reynaldo Alejandro, from whom I got my first adobo, pancit, lumpia, and sinigang recipes. This period in my life also rekindled my interest in cooking, and my first impressions of the Philippine cuisine compared to those of France, Italy, China, India, and even Mexico and Thailand is that it seemed a bit monochromatic. Oddly, I felt the same way about Irish cooking. This may not be as odd as it seems, as both cuisines are heavily based on a white starchy food, rice for the Philippines and the potato for Ireland. The centerpiece of our Philippine kitchen was a rather large hamper for dispensing rice which could easily hold 50 pounds of rice, which we bought in 25 pound bags, three to four at a time. And, one bag generally lasted about three weeks, as a rice cooker full of rice was made at virtually every meal. This impression of low variety was reinforced by visits to Philippine restaurants in New York and San Francisco. It is no surprise that our favorite restaurant was not Philippine, but Korean.
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Eli Jeproks on February 9, 2007
Format: Hardcover
One thing must be made clear: "Memories ..." is not cookbook. Yes, the authors, who happen to be the proprietors of Cendrillon in New York, provide good recipes for many of the important Filipino dishes. But the book is much more a scholarly anthropology of what is perhaps the least understood of Asia's great cuisines. It tells you which dishes are truly indigenous, which ones are borrowed and adapted from Spain and Mexico and which ones are from Asian neighbors. The authors also tell you about wonderful personalities in the Philippines who produce dishes to die for. There is the master lechonero of Silay and the famous puto maker of Pila. There is even a bit of adventure -- they take you along in the hunt for the very elusive Kurakding, more rare and better tasting apparently than the white truffle of Piedmont! A fun book for intelligent foodies!
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By J. James on March 29, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My wife is from the Philippines. I saw this book on the IACP Cookbook Awards Finalist list and thought she would enjoy a book containing recipes for some of the Philippine cuisine she hasn't cooked herself. Received the book today and expected it to be good, but it is even better than I imagined. There are many many fine color photographs with few text only pages and recipes for everything I've heard my wife mention over the years. I most enjoy cookbooks that go into the culture and history as well as providing top quality photographs, recipes, best practices, examples, etc. This book appears to have it all!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Beaumont Martin on November 28, 2006
Format: Hardcover
My Filipina wife of 34 years looked at the photos and was inspired to try dishes like the black-rice paella that she has never tried before. She also remembered other dishes she has forgotten over the years and made a list of those to cook. The book is an oversize coffee-table book with many beautiful photos to tempt your tastebuds. Many cookbooks of Filipino recipes are listed on Amazon and are in my wife's library, but this one is the best of the lot and is only a little more expensive than the others but darn well worth it.
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19 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Pamela Ferrer on November 8, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I really needed a traditional Filipino cookbook. It's cool that they turned Filipino dishes into something fancy and pretty. As far as recipes are concerned; some looks good, some looks questionable (coconut milk on dinugooan?). I noticed they made their chicken adobo with coconut milk, which is fine (though I'm not used to this) but the rice that supposed to compliment this has a complicated recipe. It has bamboo shoots and shiitake mushrooms in it. I'm disappointed that some of my favorite dishes weren't included like binagoongang baboy, mechado, embutido, pancit palabok, pancit bihon and lumpiang prito. I also find it funny that they've completely shied away from the recipe for puto, although I do agree that a good one is a rare find. It seems that this book has either missing favorites or altered the recipes to cater a different audience. It's interesting that the authors has a restaurant in SoHo, NY, which probably explain the alterations. I wish I knew that before buying the book because I would have reevaluated my decision.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By N.B. on November 29, 2006
Format: Hardcover
By far the best Filipino cookbook I've seen -- it's a a wildly useful cookbook, a gorgeous coffee-table book, and a fascinating cultural course, all in one. The authors show both love and deep knowledge in describing the specifics and regional idiosyncrasies of a cuisine that's far too often reduced to tired versions of a few signature dishes. If you're not familiar with Filipino food, get with it - it's an incredibly flavorful combination of sour, salty, sweet, and meaty, and, with its Spanish and Mexican influences (as well as Chinese, Indian, Malaysian, and others), it really stands apart from other Southeast Asian cuisines. In the last two weeks alone, the beef tapa, adobo, pancit, and bibingka have gone into my 'permanent' recipe file.
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