Roots: The Underground Cookbook

Barbara Grunes, Author, Anne E. Hunt, Author, Annne Elise Hunt, With
Barbara Grunes, Author, Anne E. Hunt, Author, Annne Elise Hunt, With Chicago Review Press $9.94 (204p) ISBN 978-1-55652-174-4
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The ancient uses of roots in cookery and culture receive a new treatment here at the hands of Grunes ( Fish on the Grill ) and Hunt ( Eating for Two ). The two food veterans do well with this solid staple, offering recipes that are inventive and healthful (although theirs is ``not a low-fat cookbook,'' not strictly vegetarian and not a foe of cheeses). The roots concerned? Potatoes, yams, onions, beets, carrots, beans, radishes, turnips, rutabagas, garlic, leeks; one chapter is devoted entirely to Asian roots (ginger, etc.). There is reason to go multicultural with a subject like this one, and the authors take moderate steps toward that goal with recipes of Scandinavian, German, American, Russian, Italian, French and Latin American origins. Root menus are suggested; one begins with carrot blini and also takes in flat onion bread, a root vegetable pot pie, carrot jam, carrot cake and ginger ice cream. Roots can satisfy even where chocolate's concerned: take note of the mashed potato chocolate cake. And don't forget the ginger meringue. Those with their roots in roots may well be persuaded to return to them with this summons. (Aug.)
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