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A Treasury of Great Recipes: 50th Anniversary

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I just got this book not too long ago, and it has been amazing! Its interesting comparing it to the original version, it is definitely nice to see updated tips!

 

 

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    • By MisterHobgoblin
      I have cooked a number of recipes from this book now, and the overwhelming conclusion is that they are over-flavoured. Don't get me wrong, I am not afraid of flavour. I have eaten at Persian restaurants and festivals. Although I haven't visited Iran, I have visited the Middle East, Caucasus and India and enjoyed the food on offer.
        This week, I gave a run out for the lamb chops with rose petals, pomegranate and chilli. The flavours were interesting and were probably well integrated, if only they had been less intense. They totally dominated the lamb and produced something that was overly salty and covered in a powdery paste. When you look at the ingredients, you have 1tsp of dry spice per 100 grams of lamb on the bone. That's an awful lot. The lamb and dried lime, too, was overly dominated by the dried limes. I have had this dish elsewhere so I know it is supposed to be citric, but the number of dried limes (more than one per serving) just overwhelmed the expensive cut of lamb, and the saffron might as well not have been in the mix. And the cod with fenugreek leaves was interesting, overly spiced and the fenugreek leaves (which I had not used before) made the whole dish gritty - not a great effect. I have also run some of the salads and these were more successful and the flavours are unusual, even if the use of some of the ingredients (e.g. orange blossom water and rose water) can feel a little heavy handed.    I know that any negative review of a recipe book is going to generate a feeling that I must have messed up in the cooking or sourcing ingredients. Perhaps that is the case, but I have managed to get very high success rates with other, similar books (e.g. Jerusalem and The Lebanese Kitchen) and on-line recipes. And I did source the ingredients at an Iranian grocer so I am confident in them. I may try other recipes from this book, but I don't feel that I will ever trust the book. If the success rate improves, I will revisit this review and revise it upwards. But I would be more inclined to look at the book for inspiration and then look elsewhere for the recipes.    Oh, and nice as the presentation is with colour photos, some ribbons for place markers would have been useful. And less tight binding to allow the book to sit open at the desired page(s).    **000
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      I am kicking off two BGO Book Group Reads today. They will start concurrently but it will take longer to decide on the second read...
       
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