A History of Food in 100 Recipes - William Sitwell

Beginning with ancient Egyptian bread and concluding with modernist foie gras, this journey through culinary history will deepen your appreciation of such ubiquitous fare as the sandwich. William Sitwell uses 4,000 years of recipes to explore the origins of today’s favorite foods as well as the evolution of food-related media, from the first cookbook to food TV. Unless you are willing to wait for airborne yeast to leaven your bread or have a taste for flamingo, not every dish here is appropriate for a weeknight dinner; while these recipes are not all practical guides, each is an illuminating example of humanity’s long and colorful relationship with our victuals (my favorite chapter title: “An Englishman discovers the fork, 1611”). With A History of Food in 100 Recipes (Little, Brown, $35), Sitwell has concocted a fascinating chronicle and a unique cookbook—one you will want to sit down and read from cover to cover.

Extra Virginity: The Sublime and Scandalous World of Olive Oil - Tom Mueller

Thanks to Extra Virginity (W.W. Norton, $16.95), by Tom Mueller, drizzling olive oil on a piece of toast will never be quite so easy again. It is one of the most valuable substances in recorded history, so there is plenty to say about olive oil. And if Mueller had just given us a nice history of the product or a detailed description of its varied uses, I would have been eager to read his book; who doesn’t enjoy a well-researched food lit piece?! But that is not exactly what Extra Virginity is. This exposé also reveals the murky underworld of today’s olive-oil trade and production; indeed, everything about olive oil is hotly debated, and much is corrupt. While piquing interest among foodies and historians alike, this book reads primarily as a social plea: for the sake of history, culture, taste—for the sake of the olive farmers themselves—we must all be more discerning in our selection of olive oil.
Extra Virginity: The Sublime and Scandalous World of Olive Oil By Tom Mueller Cover Image
ISBN: 9780393343618
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - April 8th, 2013

The Duke's Table - Enrico Alliata

Italian food seems uniquely suited to the vegetarian diet because it utilizes garden-fresh ingredients to their fullest and most delicious potential. Sadly, vegetarian Italian cookbooks are hard to come by, which is why I was so excited about the release of The Duke's Table: The Complete Book of Vegetarian Italian Cooking. I didn't even know the half of it: this book was first published in 1930 by Enrico Alliata, Duke of Salaparuta,and is only now coming out in English. Alliata comes from a wine-making family dating back to the 18th century, and he advocated a vegetarian diet which he believed could prolong human life to 130 years. Additionally, this book is comprised of 1,030 imaginative, healthy recipes, so you get a big piece of history as well as an encyclopedia of Italian vegetarian cuisine.
The Duke's Table: The Complete Book of Vegetarian Italian Cooking By Enrico Alliata Cover Image
ISBN: 9781612191393
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Melville House - March 26th, 2013