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The Recipe Writer's Handbook, Revised and Updated Paperback – April 13, 2001
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This guidebook is one of few aimed at its select audience (professional food writers), but you don't have to be a pro to appreciate it. It's also a great resource for all of those self-publishing cookbook authors out there. Authors Barbara Gibbs Ostmann and Jane L. Baker, both experienced newspaper foodies, culled information from a fistful of sources (Williams Sonoma and Food & Wine among them) to create their guide. The results should be a relief both to food writers and to the cooks who rely on their recipes. The Recipe Writer's Handbook addresses recipe-writing style, spellings of common (and not so common) ingredients, definitions of cooking terminology, and nutritional analysis. It stresses, above all else, accuracy, consistency, and clarity; it admonishes the recipe developer to assume nothing about what the readers know (apparently, one editor was asked by a reader how far to drop drop cookies; another got a call from a woman who wanted to know whether her new oven was preheated). Most interesting is the final section, in which food professionals wax philosophical on what makes a good recipe good.
From the Inside Flap
The Recipe Writers Handbook Every recipe you write has the power to make or break a mealand a cooks reputation! Thats why it is up to you to combine accuracy, consistency, and your personal style in recipes that are easy to understand and use. Measurements must add up, vocabulary must be clear, and the whole process must be broken down into simple steps with straightforward instructions and error-free presentation. A tall order? Not with The Recipe Writers Handbook by your side. Whether youre working in the kitchen or at the computer, this comprehensive handbook provides definitive guidance on how to write concise and complete recipes without sacrificing your creativity or your personal touch. The Haudbook teaches you how to "think" your way through a recipe to make important decisions and troubleshoot potential problems concerning format and syntax, spelling, cooking terminology, weights and measurements, recipe testing, presentation of the final recipe, and many other areas. In the foreword, Antonia Allegra, president of the International Association of Culinary Professionals, ponders the soul of a well-written recipe. Other leading food authorities, such as Madeleine Kamman, director of the School for American Chefs at Beringer Vineyards; Carolyn ONeil, of CNNs "On The Menu"; and Chuck Williams, the founder of Williams-Sonoma cook-ware stores, offer valuable insights into what makes a good recipe. Filled with detailed information, plus extensive resource listings of food promotion organizations, books, and much more, this one-stop reference is an indispensable toot-of-the-trade for anyone who develops, tests, edits, or writes recipes.
Top customer reviews
I bought this book at the beginning of my career as a food stylist and cookbook author. Thanks to the book, I realized the common mistakes recipe writers face. And it has a richly detailed index on how to fix any problematic wording. I have since passed it along to all of my food writer friends.
If you are reading this Barbara Gibbs Ostmann, thank you for writing this book.
Covers so many details that you aren't sure of when you're writing your book.