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New Good Food, rev: Essential Ingredients for Cooking and Eating Well Paperback – November 1, 2007

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New Good Food, rev: Essential Ingredients for Cooking and Eating Well + New Good Food Pocket Guide, rev: Shopper's Pocket Guide to Organic, Sustainable, and Seasonal Whole Foods
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"...Anyone concerned with healthy eating and consciousness about our food supply will want this important resource in their kitchen." -- John Mackey, Chairman of the Board, Chief Executive Officer of Whole Foods Market, Inc.

"...New Good Food is the Larousse Gastronomique of natural foods - ingredients, insight, and inspiration in one definitive volume." -- Heidi Swanson, author of Super Natural Cooking

"...a cornerstone of every good cook's library, as well a food literacy text for beginners." -- Mollie Katzen, author of the Moosewood Cookbook

"...an extraordinarily comprehensive guide to foods, ingredients, and their handling." -- Marion Nestle, professor of nutrition, food studies, and public health at New York University, and author of What to Eat.

"...an outstanding tool for any home cook or chef with an interest in making healthy food." -- Nell Newman, Co-founder & President of Newman's Own Organics

From the Publisher

* An updated and expanded edition of the definitive guide to buying, storing, and preparing whole foods. * Revisions include seven new chapters, with one devoted exclusively to whole grains. * Provides an insider's view on agriculture and livestock, including a look at grass-fed beef and antibiotic use in meat production, as well as organic labeling and new nutritional findings.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 296 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press; First Printing edition (November 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1580087507
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580087506
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 0.6 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,183,911 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Jeff Kletsky on April 20, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Taking a quick flip through this book has one thinking that the volume is encyclopedic and loaded with good information about ingredients. Unfortunately, the depth of information is very shallow and, in some cases, of unclear value.

As background, I have a good sized bookshelf filled with cookbooks and tend to prefer those that discuss authentic ingredients and techniques over the "quick and easy" type. If I'm looking for information on ethnic ingredients, the source should stand up to content in texts like "Japanese Cooking: A Simple Art" (Tsuji), "The Modern Art of Chinese Cooking" (Tropp), or "Classic Indian Cooking" (Sahni).

"New Good Food" often has little more than a paragraph of general information on each ingredient, with the focus seeming to be on why a food store like Whole Foods would select it for its claimed health benefits, rather than providing significant culinary or cultural depth.

There is some substitution information (e.g., sweeteners) and cooking information (e.g., grains and legumes), but its accessibility and depth ("Cut in half or in wedges and steam, or bake with a splash of oil, a favorite seasoning, and salt or tamari.") is not enough to make this book a "go to" for me.

Some of the discussions about what the food terms, such as "organic" and "free range" mean, might be of value to some, but that information is widely available elsewhere.

In some cases, the information is questionable.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By M. J. Smith VINE VOICE on May 28, 2009
Format: Paperback
I have given up on ever finding a single book which will identify everything I find in the market, tell me how to select, store and use the product, and whether or not its good for me. So I rely on a short shelf of books e.g.Melissa's Great Book of Produce: Everything You Need to Know about Fresh Fruits and Vegetables or Cooking With Asian Leaves by Devagi Sanmugam & Christopher Tan (apparently out of print),Buried Treasures: Tasty Tubers of the World (Brooklyn Botanic Garden All-Region Guide) etc. etc. New Good Food is a good addition to the collection.

It's strong points: the section on beans, peas, and lentils provide specific instructions for a wide variety of beans etc. Rather than guessing what class of beans I have, I more often can find the actual bean variety. It doesn't always help ... I still had to struggle with my mideastern "ful" beans that weren't foul beans (North African flat type) that were foul beans (North Indian brown beans). However, if I restrict my shopping to Whole Foods (where the author works.

There is also a wonderful segment on pasta - Jerusalem artichoke pasta, quinoa pasta, sprouted grain pasta, kuzukiri (Japanese kudzu based).

Like most similar books, one needs to take nutritional information with a dose of skepticism - its a matter of which study producing incompatible results fit the bent of the author. On the whole, however, the author appears to try to be even-handed with regards to most of the locavore / slow foods / organic eating contraversies.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By H. Grove (errantdreams) TOP 500 REVIEWER on January 30, 2008
Format: Paperback
Whether you're looking for information on produce or whole grains, seafood or meats, dairy or sea vegetables, it's in here. I've already done quite a bit of reading in whole foods books, and yet I learned plenty of new and fascinating things in this volume. Much of it is incredibly practical. For example, if you want to know the difference between Tamari, Shoyu, and Soy Sauce---the practical differences in how they're produced and what they contain---that's all in here. You'll understand how to figure out which ones are fermented vs. which ones are produced chemically; which ones are better for high-heat cooking vs. which ones are better as a condiment and why; and so on. If you want to know the complex process by which Tamari was originally produced (as a by-product of miso production), you can read about that, too.

Or maybe you'd like to delve into the wide variety of sea vegetables available in the whole foods market, but you don't know how to even begin using them. Ms. Wittenberg's book identifies each one and provides detailed instructions for using them in various types of cooking.

New Good Food includes plenty of information on various sweeteners---not just how they're made, but what sorts of sugars they're comprised of and how quickly those sugars break down in the body (essential information for diabetics). The section on produce includes information on the peak seasons for a very wide variety of items so you'll know when to go looking for them at their best. Information on whole grains from around the world includes not just historical and nutritional information, but of course basic cooking methods as well.

New Good Food is an utterly fantastic reference volume to keep on your shelves as you experiment with more whole foods.
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New Good Food, rev: Essential Ingredients for Cooking and Eating Well
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