Few foodies are more devoted than those who belong to the fiery food cult. These are the people who keep a bottle of Tabasco in their purses for emergencies, whose palates are never blistered, whose tastebuds never timid. This volume, which catalogs every pepper, chile, curry and mustard known to man, is for them. Beginning with a guided tour through the spice regions of the world and a brief history of the spice trade, it shifts gears about a third of the way through and becomes a cookbook, offering up an eccentric collection of recipes. First come the spice rubs, pastes and blends, from the Moroccan Ras El Hanout, which is ""used to flavor tagines, couscous, lamb, and game,"" to the Southwest Seasoning Rub, which the authors advise sprinkling in a pot of pinto beans. Next up are appetizers and snacks, and then several varieties of main courses, including meat-based selections like Korean Chap Chee and vegetarian mains like Egg Fritters in Chile Sauce. There are even recipes for cool down dishes like the deliciously flan-like Queso Napolitano and an old-fashioned Cucumber Slaw. While these recipes are rather loosely linked-one gets the feeling that the authors included any dish that requires a twist of pepper-they are easy to make, fun to eat and guaranteed to please the most ardent fans of piquant foods.
Reviewed on: 05/02/2005 Release date: 05/01/2005 Genre: Nonfiction