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Food books I want to read or am glad I did

Mae "mes2000"
The list author says: "My wish list of books on food and cooking is 4 pages long, but I'm working on it. As I read new reviews, I add to this listmania list, and as I buy and read the books, I change the wishes to comments. It's now at the 40 book max, so as I add new ones, I'm also removing the ones I like least (or haven't gotten around to reading after 2 years)."
Quiches, Kugels, and Couscous: My Search for Jewish Cooking in France
Quiches, Kugels, and Couscous: My Search for Jewish Cooking in France
"This new book (2010) offers both recipes and history of the foods of the French Jews, past and present."
The Fortune Cookie Chronicles: Adventures in the World of Chinese Food
The Fortune Cookie Chronicles: Adventures in the World of Chinese Food
"This is a wonderful book. It's also becoming very popular, which I guessed it would. Relates in a very interesting way to Stealing Buddha's Dinner. Read both!"
Stealing Buddha's Dinner: A Memoir
Stealing Buddha's Dinner: A Memoir
"The story of how this author struggled to fit into her American life -- and the major role that food played througout her growing up. A really good memoir. (There are several editions: look for the best price!)"
The Jews of Poland: Recollections and Recipes
The Jews of Poland: Recollections and Recipes
"Too bad this book is so rare. When I finally obtained a copy I found it fascinating. The author (a non-Jew of Polish descent) interviewed Jews in Poland and Paris in the 1920s. An unusual view: without nostalgia that usually comes with food remembered from childhood, he takes a somewhat harsh view, but is very interesting."
Ma Gastronomie
Ma Gastronomie
"New edition of a famous classic by & about the iconic chef who died in 1955."
La Cucina Di Lidia: Recipes and Memories from Italy's Adriatic Coast
La Cucina Di Lidia: Recipes and Memories from Italy's Adriatic Coast
"Her TV show about her family experiences makes me think this memoir would be a very interesting read -- the TV-show book, "Lidia's Italy" might also be good, but I would guess watered down. I'll read one of them -- and keep watching on PBS too."
The Oxford Companion to Italian Food
The Oxford Companion to Italian Food
"Fun to browse."
Citrus: A History
Citrus: A History
"Oranges, lemons, ugli fruit, grapefruit, clementines, .... from the perspective of a chemist who likes technology as well as history. Early history is brief: the last 100 years predominate. Lots of good details."
Curry: A Tale of Cooks and Conquerors
Curry: A Tale of Cooks and Conquerors
"Was curry the first fusion cooking (avant la lettre)? Read this and decide. A great book."
Secret Ingredients: The New Yorker Book of Food and Drink
Secret Ingredients: The New Yorker Book of Food and Drink
"This book promises a smorgasboard of great food articles. Some I've no doubt read in the magazine."
The Zen of Fish: The Story of Sushi, from Samurai to Supermarket
The Zen of Fish: The Story of Sushi, from Samurai to Supermarket
"By the author of "The Secret Life of Lobsters" -- I like the approach of working in history, gastronomy, pop culture, and food chemistry within the story of one person learning to be a sushi chef. Great read."
What Hawaii Likes to Eat
What Hawaii Likes to Eat
"The LA Times summarized some of Betty Shimabukuro's Hawaiian favorites (she's co-author). Really interesting -- Hawaii is all fusion all the time. I wouldn't want to taste spam sushi, but it's fun to know about it!"
Tsukiji: The Fish Market at the Center of the World
Tsukiji: The Fish Market at the Center of the World
"This is a remarkable book, filled with insights into the human relationships within a gigantic institution and into Japanese cultural factors. Note: news stories just revealed that the market is now so famous it won't let any more tourists visit!"
The Sushi Economy: Globalization and the Making of a Modern Delicacy
The Sushi Economy: Globalization and the Making of a Modern Delicacy
"Reviewed with Corson's new Zen of Fish this also has a lot of appeal as good food reading."
My Life in France
My Life in France
"Loved it! Exactly what I always wanted to know about Saint Julia."
The True History of Chocolate
The True History of Chocolate
"Wonderful book! I learned much about the ancient Mexican cultures, as well as about their foods. And also about the development of chocolate tastes in the European world."
Climbing the Mango Trees: A Memoir of a Childhood in India
Climbing the Mango Trees: A Memoir of a Childhood in India
"Another wonderful book: every event in her life includes spices! How can one person be a film star AND a REAL cookbook writer? This book is only about her childhood: maybe a sequel will answer the question."
Arabesque: A Taste of Morocco, Turkey, and Lebanon
Arabesque: A Taste of Morocco, Turkey, and Lebanon
"Roden is an excellent author. And her recipes have worked for me in the past. So I hope to at least try some from here, when I get it."
The Art of the Dessert
The Art of the Dessert
"By the pastry chef who made my daughter's wedding cake: I gave her the book for her anniversary, and it's wonderful, though I think the recipes look impossible to do rather than just read and wish..."
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life
"The descriptions of the local food and local farmers and interactions are up to Barbara Kingsolver at her best."
Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think
Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think
"The big plus: the author's suggestions are really helping with weight loss! And also fun to read whether you need to lose weight or not: it's mostly about real research, not fake motivational garbage like so many diet books."
America's First Cuisines
America's First Cuisines
"Combined with Coe's "True History of Chocolate" this provides a really interesting look at the history of the Maya and other pre-columbian cuisines."
The Taste of Conquest: The Rise and Fall of the Three Great Cities of Spice
The Taste of Conquest: The Rise and Fall of the Three Great Cities of Spice
"After a bland introduction, the pace picks up and the book is a vivid history of many aspects of spice in cooking, medicine, commerce, war, and colonial affairs of Venice, Amsterdam, and Lisbon."
The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals
The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals
"Let's face it: the chapter about foraging for mushrooms and shooting a wild boar is silly. But it's in extreme contrast to the insightful studies of the American food supply chain in the other three chapters. Also don't miss "In Defense of Food""
The United States of Arugula: How We Became a Gourmet Nation
The United States of Arugula: How We Became a Gourmet Nation
"While I enjoyed much of The US of Arugula -- especially the early gossipy chapters, where his good-natured portrayals of flamboyant personalities were often really successful -- in the long run, I felt as if he promised a lot more than he delivered."
Why Some Like It Hot: Food, Genes, and Cultural Diversity
Why Some Like It Hot: Food, Genes, and Cultural Diversity
"When I read this a second time, I found it much more insightful. I think it requires a lot of concentration, but it's worth the effort."
The Big Oyster: History on the Half Shell
The Big Oyster: History on the Half Shell
"After his books on salt and cod, this sounded like another winner. However, I can't say I really liked it as much."
A Taste of Heritage: Crow Indian Recipes and Herbal Medicines (At Table)
A Taste of Heritage: Crow Indian Recipes and Herbal Medicines (At Table)
"This book really intrigues me."
The World Is a Kitchen: Cooking Your Way Through Culture
The World Is a Kitchen: Cooking Your Way Through Culture
"This book consists of many small sketches by numerous authors. The descriptions are often of a single person who cooked something really special, and what this experience meant to the author. I'm a little skeptical of some of the recipes as the narrative suggests a much more exotic result than the recipe would give."
On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen
On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen
"Along with its sequels, this is a total classic for understanding the WHY not just the HOW of lots of food processes. The author now has a blog and a NY Times column."
Molecular Gastronomy: Exploring the Science of Flavor (Arts and Traditions of the Table: Perspectives on Culinary History)
Molecular Gastronomy: Exploring the Science of Flavor (Arts and Traditions of the Table: Perspectives on Culinary History)
"This is harder and less fun to read than McGee On Food and Cooking -- but lots of really good stuff... Oh that French seriousness!"
Between Meals: An Appetite for Paris
Between Meals: An Appetite for Paris
"Very old favorite. Next few selections are also old faves."
The Art of Eating: 50th Anniversary Edition
The Art of Eating: 50th Anniversary Edition
"Five of M.F.K.Fisher's famous classics in one volume. "All good books were written this morning" -- these 60-70 year old works seem to support this saying."
Oranges
Oranges
"Yet another classic from the 1960s. The descriptions of the orange industry are like a time capsule but other parts about oranges and eating them are interesting."
Honey from a Weed (Cook's Classic Library)
Honey from a Weed (Cook's Classic Library)
"Another old favorite about the real Mediterranean and its original cooking, pre-fads."
Tender at the Bone: Growing Up at the Table
Tender at the Bone: Growing Up at the Table
"The first in her multi-part autobiography, Ruth Reichl tells of her childhood and her vastly strange mother. Once you read it, you'll surely continue with the sequels."
Travels with Alice
Travels with Alice
"Trillin's latest book is an appreciation of his late wife Alice. But the early appreciations of Alice as partner and coparent are all great books from start to finish."
Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands
Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands
"Dona Flor, the multi-dimensional focus of this wonderful book, is a cook, and often her thoughts accompany her teaching of Brazilian recipes. A good read!"