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Olive: A Global History (Reaktion Books - Edible) Hardcover – October 15, 2011
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About the Author
Fabrizia Lanza is a food scholar and the owner of the acclaimed Anna Tasca Lanza Sicilian Cooking School in Regaleali, Sicily.
Top Customer Reviews
By Fabrizia Lanza for The Edible Series
Review by Marty Martindale
I love olives, their shape, black or green, and their special saltiness. I also like olive art. They are nifty, firm little fruit, pleasing little parcels packed into a perfectly smooth skin. Ancient and symbolic, it takes 35 years for an olive tree to be considered mature.
Lanza's little Olive book is as trim as the olive, itself, only 116 pages with a comprehensive five-page index. This is in addition to some exciting classic olive recipes and a very helpful by-country olive origin appendix. A fair amount of time spent with this section alone can enable one to engage responsibly in "olive speak." Both Italy and Spain, each have given the world eight different varieties of olives. Beautiful photography delights throughout the book.
Lanza paints an interesting history of olives which figure more prominently as an ingredient in North American culture these days. She then takes us through legendary olive and olive oil rituals, their migration across the world and how olives made the Mediterranean diet so practical.
The most fascinating recipe in the book, for this olive-lover, is her Roasted Black Olives with Orange Zest. Modular experimentation with Olive Paste looks intriguing too.
This book makes an excellent olive gift to yourself or to all olive-loving friends.
You wont either!
These books manage to tell the tales of your favorite foods, in this case, olives. We all use olive oil, but where did it come from? How is it handled, produced, processed into our favorite foods? How was it produced and processed two thousand years ago? What do we share in common with Mediterranean cultures and their diets? You won't know the answer to any of these questions, unless you buy this book!
Great read, fascinating pictures and delicious recipes!
Even if you're not a foodie (and I don't necessarily consider myself one) this series and this book in particular, are worth the money and time to read!
I bought my book second hand (used), reasonable shipping, arrived in a timely manner and almost brand new!
Will buy more!
It was a prize to be coveted, fought for and which sustained empires. It has been a part of our cuisine and lifestyle for so long it seems boringly ordinary and mundane.
It is anything but!! Fabrizia Lanza tells a tale, at once romantic and historical, of this tree and it's berries with energy and passion that takes me from the distant times in Mesapotamia to my dinner table today. The rise and fall of empires and fortunes made and lost along the way....always with the smell and fizz of an olive present.
This was a wonderful read and once again, I am impressed by the depth of knowledge and research that has gone into telling this tale about the most common of foods!
Anyone who is curious about where our food comes from and how it has been used should read this book! Excellent!