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The Cuisines of Spain: Exploring Regional Home Cooking Paperback – August 11, 2009

4.8 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Praise for The Cuisines of Spain from around the world:

“It’s rare to find a cookbook that distills the spirit of a people and immerses us in the context of a particular cuisine. To cook creatively, we must uncover the soul of a place so that what we prepare has an identity. Because Teresa Barrenechea allows us to truly grasp Spanish cooking, we come away with much more than a few recipes, but with the essence of her country’s vital respect for food in our hands and in our hearts. A winner.”
–James Peterson, author of Sauces


“In this beautifully illustrated, deliciously researched book, Teresa Barrenechea makes sense out of what outsiders might see as two bewildering paradoxes of Spanish food and indeed Spanish civilization. One is a proud embrace of regional loyalties, coupled with an inescapable overall Spanish identity. The other is a fierce attachment to incredibly old traditions, along with a spirit of defiant modernist invention and reinvention that is just as fierce. Through Teresa’s loving presentation of dishes culled from home cooks, remote rural areas, and sophisticated cities–including many recipes never before published in English–you will instinctively taste how vivid flavor and simple pleasure always have been and still are at the heart of the Spanish culinary ethos.”
–Maricel Presilla, author of The New Taste of Chocolate


“In an era of novelistic cookbooks and florid foodie memoirs, Teresa Barrenechea takes a refreshingly straightforward approach to her subject matter, which is nothing less than the many and varied cuisines of Spain. She sets the scene and adds useful asides, but her main mission is to tell us how to accurately cook a great deal of honest, not overly complicated, unfailingly delicious food, and at this she succeeds superbly.”
–Colman Andrews, author of Catalan Cuisine


“Teresa Barrenechea’s love of and expertise on Spain’s traditional food is beautifully executed in this exciting book, with charming photos and delightful stories of the people, places, and ingredients.”
–Rose Gray and Ruth Rogers, The River Cafe, London


“With her restaurants in New York and her participation in numerous cooking events around the world, Teresa Barrenechea has established herself as the most gifted teacher of our cuisine abroad. The Cuisines of Spain is the culmination of her work, and it is a book of great integrity and beauty.”
–Clara Mar’a Gonzalez de Amezœa, coauthor of From Spain with Olive Oil


From Spain's Michelin Three-star Chefs:

“The cuisine of a country is of importance when it is rooted in diverse traditions while at the same time looking to the future. Spanish regional cooking has often been distorted, as so often happens with folk cuisines when we fail to explore their true abundance. In this book, Teresa Barrenechea captures the essence of our country’s authentic regional cooking in a way never before accomplished. I am grateful to her for enlightening us with the wealth of our culinary legacy.”
–Ferran Adriˆ, Restaurante El Bulli


“Teresa Barrenechea has long been an ambassador for the food traditions of our country. In addition to being a wonderful cook, she has touched me as a friend and as a chef for having transmitted the true essence of our regional cuisines through this book.”
–Juan Mari Arzak, Restaurante Arzak


“Teresa Barrenechea has created a precise and beautiful compilation and interpretation of the best Spanish cuisine. This book is truly a declaration of love; Teresa gives to us a present that could only come from a generous soul. I hope this book will invoke in the reader an unbearable curiosity to experience our blessed land, its people, and its gastronomy.”
–Martin Berasategui, Restaurante Berasategui


“The cuisines of Spain are diverse, enduring, and full of contrasts, qualities that Teresa Barrenechea has captured in her wonderful book. The Cuisines of Spain reflects the spirit of the land and the people from which our regional cooking arose.”
–Santi Santamar’a, Restaurante El Rac— de Can Fabes

From the Publisher

* An authentic and richly illustrated exploration of both the renowned and lesser-known cuisines of Spain.
* Features 150 full-color photographs from Barcelona-based photojournalist Jeff Koehler and prominent food photographer Christopher Hirsheimer.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press; 2nd Revised edition edition (August 11, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 158008835X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580088350
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 1 x 10.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #735,655 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I was never particularly experienced or interested in home cooking, and to me preparing a meal usually consisted of making spaghetti or boiling an egg. Then four years ago, I discovered Spanish cooking. And now, I spend every weekend in the kitchen, furiously trying to recreate those incomparable dishes that I've only had at the best tapas bars.

I have since acquired nine Spanish/Portuguese cookbooks, and have made dishes from each. Most of them are really good, but this one is probably the best, in my opinion. (My second choice being Spain and the World Table). There are several things that set this book apart. First, it is a classic text on Spanish cooking, and as such, it presents mostly traditional Spanish recipes. This almost sounds like a contradiction, because even traditional Spanish cuisine seems so outlandishly delightful and inventive sometimes. But what it means is that here, you won't find any experimental dishes, fusion dishes, or methods for making scientifically enhanced foods - which is ok, because traditional Spanish cuisine itself has so much to offer that you'll never run out of inspiration.(However if you are looking for newer, more experimental ideas for preparing Spanish cuisine you may want to check out The New Spanish Table, or Spain and the World Table).

As a classic text on Spanish cuisine, this book offers the best and most authentic recipes of all the books I've tried. In fact, it probably has the highest number of my favorite/successful recipes of all of my Spanish cookbooks. Some of my favorite dishes from this book are: Clams in Green Sauce, Cordoban Gazpacho, Mixed Salad with Tuna and Eggs, White Bean Stew with Clams, Filet Mignon with Cabrales Sauce, and Oxtails in Red Wine (best oxtail recipe I've ever tried).
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Format: Paperback
This book is organised as a traditional cookbook, but you also get information about the regional home of each recipe. The book has a lot of recipes and a number of picture, but not of all recipes. I find the selection very good.

A comparison with some other books might be helpful for potential buyers:
- The Food of Spain is a brand new book that I don't like at all. Far too many useless picture and not really written for foodies. Two stars.
- Culinaria Spain is great to get more knowledge about ingredients, but doesn't really have recipes. Four stars.
- The New Spanish Table is my favourite Spanish cookbook. I really like it because of its youthful styles with lots of information crammed into sidebars and boxes. Five stars.
- The Foods and Wines of Spain is a bit dated now, but also a very good book. No pictures. Four stars.
- Delicioso! The Regional Cooking of Spain is also a bit dated (same author as previous book). If you buy something from this author makes sure you buy the previous book first.
- 1080 Recipes is not recommended unless you want a book written for young Spanish wife. So it contains some non-Spanish dishes too.

Good luck choosing!
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Very complete and comprehensive survey of the different dishes around Spain. Recipes are doable in America. Great descriptions of regions and their food.
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