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Sweet Hands: Island Cooking From Trinidad And Tobago (Hippocrene Cookbook Library) Hardcover – March, 2006

4.5 out of 5 stars 72 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

" A tender tribute to [the author's] father... A book filled with enticing recipes, Ganeshram conjures strong memories." -- Newsday, April 12, 2006

"Sweet Hands is a tribute to Trinidad." -- Miami Herald, June 1, 2006

"Sweet Hands" is an enjoyable acquisition for Caribbean cuisine novices and those who were raised on the fare. -- New York Daily News, September 17, 2005

"The recipes in this book are simply delicious, extremely filling, and will be enjoyed by even the most finicky audience." -- TCM Reviews, April 14, 2006

I really appreciate the book’s historical content and the easy to follow recipes that can be prepared in no time. -- Everybody's --The Caribbean-American Magazine

About the Author

Ramin Ganeshram was born in New York City of a Trinidadian father and Iranian mother. She has been a journalist for 14 years, and has written about food for Bon Appetit, Gourmet, Saveur, Four Seasons, Cooking Light, Newsday (as a regular contributor), and many other publications. A professionally trained chef, she has a degree from the Institute of Culinary Education in New York City and a master's degree in journalism from Columbia University.
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Product Details

  • Series: Hippocrene Cookbook Library
  • Hardcover: 271 pages
  • Publisher: Hippocrene Books (March 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0781811252
  • ISBN-13: 978-0781811255
  • Product Dimensions: 10.3 x 7.3 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #730,684 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By J. White on December 30, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Growing up in trinidad and tobago is a unique experience and the foods there are definitely #1 compared to a lot of other islands. When I first moved to the USA, I was not all that concerned with trying to find the foods since there was a place for roti near our house, and you can find most of those ingredients in Miami. It was not until after college when i moved to the Northwest States that I felt "homesick" for dahlpuri and callaloo and other such things. I have purchased and tested several books that are a generalized Caribbean cookbook, as well as hunted down the Naparima Girls Guide to Cooking. It was not until I found Sweet Hands and read through it that I found what I needed.

The pictures of Trinidad and the stories bring that element of history and home and passion to the recipes. And I LOVE that she offers substitutions for some of the ingredients. I made a callaloo stew with swiss chard and spinach as suggested, and while the taste was slightly less sweet, it carried such a good flavour that I felt I was home again. Those other cookbooks maybe going to the second hand store.
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Format: Hardcover
This is the only Caribbean book I have seen that includes recipes for the more unusual items you will get while visiting Trinidad. (Doubles, Pows, etc.) And they are "right on"! I love this book and had rave reviews for some of the food I made from it at an office party. Even the picky people who were afraid of curry.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a Trini-American, I take great pride in the culinary traditions from my parents and siblings birth place so I am happy to have this book as part of my reference. Many of the recipes I have learned from my mom and aunts, but there are a few that I have always wanted to master. Making Dhalpuri Roti has been a real challenge for me so I was interested in the roti recipes contained in the book and have to say overall the book is divided well and shares some good Trini recipes.
As with any culinary backgrounds, I found that the recipes I learned from my family might be a little different, but that's the beauty of cooking.

The reason the book did not get 5 stars from me is that I felt there could have been more colorful photos and nutritional information. Now I now many old time Trini;s might gasp at the concept, but for those of us watching our waistline because we are health fanatics or due to health reasons nutritional information is highly important.

I found the book useful and a good learning to for those new to Trini cooking as well as the more intermediate and advance cooks. There is plenty recipes for rum cake, pastelles, and rum punch.
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Format: Hardcover
I am the first generation as a US citizen, both parents from Trinidad. So the food I grew up eating and buying from our neighborhood trini spots...it's all I really know. Now that I am an adult I want my children to know trini food as well and this book does the trick. I have the basics down pack but this book gives me the extra confidence to try and make things on my own, without calling my mother every five minutes. Great book, great history...GREAT BUY!!!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
So I grew up with the original Naparima cookbookThe Multi-Cultural Cuisine of Trinidad & Tobago & the Caribbean which got straight to the point on the recipes and was laid out like your typical high school Home Economics course. This book is another way to write a good cookbook for authentic Trinidad & Tobago cuisine, but also give it some real-world validation. Unlike the Nap book which was written by a Trinidadian, this one was written by an American who didn't actually live in Trinidad. Me, being born and raised in Trinidad and having my son spend summers in Trinidad with his grandparents know that the food experience is different for each situation. This author is not a chef, nor a cook but a journalist, so given that she has been brave enough to compete with the Naparima cookbook is enough to give her 5 stars.
I like cookbooks with pictures, and both books lack in that department. This book is very narrative also compared to the Naparima cookbook which I don't really care for. I like simple and direct instructions, which the former maybe better for someone who is not familiar with these dishes. I grew up eating the majority of these dishes, and I learnt to make most of them from the Naparima cookbook since my mother didn't really teach me how to cook.
What people need to understand that there is a street/store version of each dish and then there is your mother/grandmother's version (with that extra touch) which you are use to. The recipes are pretty standard and if you don't have that authentic Trini-food experience then your reviews of each recipe will be skewed by what you want to expect.
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Format: Hardcover
What a trip back in time. Just like Ma used to make. I am so excited to engulf myself in this book before I make my first trip back to Trinidad in 12 years. I love the way the author captures her childhood memories, that are so similar to mine.

Great job!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have tried several of the recipes in this book and they are spot on. I recently made the Shrimp Curry from the book and it was a huge hit with all the family. It tasted like Trinidad!! I am going to make the the delicious looking pepper sauce recipe next, then the coconut bread and then...
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