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THE GREATEST DISHES! Around the World in 80 Recipes

Anya von Bremzen, Author
Anya von Bremzen, Author . HarperCollins $25.95 (368p) ISBN 978-0-06-019731-5
Reviewed on: 10/27/2003
Release date: 02/01/2004
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One of the more personally idiosyncratic cookbooks to come along in some time, the latest from von Bremzen (Please to the Table: The Russian Cookbook ) reflects her country hopping as a Travel & Leisure editor. As she journeys, she collects esteemed recipes and here arranges favorites from Apple Pie to Wiener Schnitzel, with stops for Hamburger and Peking Duck in between. She provides historical tidbits, notes on recipe influences and cooking tips. Her tastes stretch well beyond geographical boundaries. When it comes to meatballs, she turns not to Italy but to Shanghai for Lion's Head Meatballs. For cheesecake, she combines the richness of Paskha from her Russian childhood with New York's traditional cream cheese in Chocolate-Glazed Lemon Cheesecake. A BBQ fan, she includes both Memphis Barbecued Ribs and their Asian cousins, Korean Barbecued Short Ribs. Restaurant-inspired dishes feature Potato Gnocchi with Cauliflower Gorgonzola Sauce, derived from a dish at an obscure Tuscan trattoria; Classic Andalusian Gazpacho from a traditional eatery in Ronda, Spain; Lobster Rolls from Fore Street in Portland, Maine; and a simplified Rose Pistola Chocolate Budino Cake from San Francisco. Readers may disagree with her choice of what constitutes the world's top 80 dishes ( such as Chinese Stir-Fried Greens), but cooks will also discover new dishes and new approaches to old standbys. (Feb.)

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