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Posted March 7, 2011
More Than A Cookbook
Elizabeth Antoine Crawford's book, "Flavors of Friuli: A Culinary Journey Through Northeastern Italy is more than a cookbook. Flavors of Friuli delights the senses with beautiful pictures introducing you to Northeastern Italy, its history, people and food.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
The landscapes call to your heart making you want to visit this little known part of Italy. The history tells the story of the land and it's people who have struggled to retain the land and their way of life. Ms. Crawford then entices you with the recipes of the area created by the people.
This is a book that I lingered long over and sometimes went back to a certain section to read again. It has so much information in it that you can go back several times and learn something new. You can tell she has taken the time to make the recipes as accessible as possible for us to make.
I highly recommend this book if you are looking to enhance your cookbook shelf or if you want to be introduced to a new area of the globe and it's people. Flavors of Friuli is one of those books that you will treasure and use over and over again. I can't say enough about the quality and beauty of the book. Top shelf Ms. Crawford.
Mangia... This book has it all!
Flavors of Friuli is everything a cookbook should be: sumptuous photography that makes one say: I want to eat that!, I want to make that!". Clear and concise recipes reinforce that initial enthusiasm; a lucid and engaging writing style that combines personal narrative with a solid grasp of history, geography and culture makes this a winner: a cookbook you want to read as well as bookmark throughout for future recipe- testing. As a food historian and culinary instructor, I believe that in order to know a people and their culture, you must first know their food, for above all it tells the story, the history and even the romantic entanglements that led to recipes across the centuries. This beautiful book provides that level of entry into the soul of the culture and people of Friuli. The book provides us with extensive exploration of the 3 regions of Friuli that range from the sea to the mountains, and thus a range of dishes is provided for every season and palate. Each chapter is divided into recipes from the antipasti to the dolci (desserts) with a combination of the simple and unusual alike. For example, I had always wondered what to do with salt cod as I always see it for sale in Mexican markets but never on restaurant plates or in my friends' homes. Crawford provides a fabulously "addictive" spread, Baccala in Bianco that will make a novel, antipasti at a summer party. I also tried the "asparagus with prosciutto": simple, elegant and immensely rich and easy to prepare for a last minute gathering. This beautiful designed cookbook exudes the passion the author clearly has for her region and the friendships that result whenever food is the conduit for good cheer. I hope Elisabeth Antoine Crawford starts culinary tours to this region, because I'll be the first to sign up. But in the meantime I am going to make Orzo e Fagioli and curl up to plan more parties with this book.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 4, 2010
Flavors of Friuli
Flavors of Friuli by Elisabeth Antoine Crawford has received nothing but five-star reviews and I can see why. It is a whole lot more than a cookbook of foods from Northeastern Italy. Ms. Crawford divides the book into the three geographic regions of Friuli: northern (Carnia Mountains), central (Hills and Plains), and Southern (Adriatic Coast). Each of those sections is then divided into these recipe sections: antipasti, primi, secondi, contorni, and dolci. Be sure to read the preface of the book to find out why Ms. Crawford chose this region of Italy and just what her experiences were while she was there. It is a very interesting story to read. The book begins with a quick geography "lesson" followed up by some history.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Then Ms. Crawford takes you to each region in Friuli with wonderful descriptions and beautiful photographs. Not knowing Italian, I appreciated the translated names of the recipes which are provided. Each recipe has a paragraph of introduction and interesting facts. The recipes are set up well and easy to understand and follow with each one getting its own page with an accompanying full-page amazing photograph. I own many cookbooks and cooking magazines, but the Flavors of Friuli is simply amazing. Anyone interested in travel, Italy, and/or Italian cooking will find this a wonderful addition to their library.and for those wanting to test out these recipes you will be kept busy for a long while. It is very easy to flip through the book and when a food photo catches your attention, choose that recipe to make! It would be a challenge for someone to look through Flavors of Friuli and not find their mouth begin to water. Congratulations, Ms. Crawford, for an excellent job of producing your culinary journey.
Posted June 9, 2010
"Flavors of Friuli": Fantastico! Stupendo!
I had never heard of Friuli; actually, I do not even know how to pronounce the word. However, after about ten minutes of perusing "Flavors of Friuli," I had an inexorable yen to take the first flight out to the northeastern region of Italy.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Before doing anything rash, though, I will probably synchronize such a trip with one of the unique events or festivals in the region, such as during the Carnevale Muggesano, (begins a week prior to Ash Wednesday) and indulge in a megafrittata, which, as the book states, may be the world's largest frittata, cooked in a giant 13-foot-wide frying pan.
Wow! "Flavors of Friuli" serves the reader a multi-course feast of history, sights, flavors, each dollop of information presented in easy to digest text and a bountiful cornucopia of colorful photographs, as appetizing as the next!
The focal point, to be sure, is food. Elizabeth Antoine Crawford provides nearly 300 pages of culinary fusion that breaks traditions with the customary, pop Italian recipes. In fact, readers will discover one of the most eclectic gastronomic experiences that has transcended from a region influenced by Roman Venetian, Austro-Hungarian and Slavic traditions. Best of all, the author's know-how and "insider's view" give the reader an intimate view of the passionate food-making process and the enchanting people behind it.
From appetizer to dessert, recipes range from simple concoctions, for instance, an asparagus and egg salad, to the more elaborate dishes of, say, a dried fruit and nut spiral cake. It seems, too, that everything is coming up gnocchi! A fact that scores a bonus, since these devilishly good quasi-pasta delights are, in actuality, quite easy to create. One thing to be sure, Ms. Crawford's recipes will surely please the most pernickety palate, and greatly inspire squelching boring fare at the table.
Reading "Flavors of Friuli" is a treasured journey that will stir the senses.get ready to buckle up for a ride to a deliciously distinct destination.
Stacy Lytwyn Maxwell, Author/Book Reviewer/Teacher
CONSUMMATE CONNECTICUT: DAY TRIPS WITH PANACHE
Posted May 24, 2010
Flavorful, historical, and wonderful
"Strucolo de Spinaze," "Pane di Zucca," and "Gnocchi alle Erbe" are just a few of the tasty recipes you'll find in "Flavors of Friuli." Detailed historical accounts and a colorful visual journey with countless beautiful photos make this book hard to put down. The author, Elisabeth Antoine Crawford, uses concise instructions to guide a reader through the food prep; these are recipes just about anyone can make. No need to be a top chef to prepare and serve the Flavors of Friuli! If 6 stars were possible, I would rate the book at 6. A great guide and pleasing to the eye!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 20, 2010
Add this book to your culinary bookshelf!
There are some cookbooks that I absolutely love and would not part with, and there are others that seem to be a rehash of something else. This book is one of the former! Elizabeth Antoine Crawford extensively traveled through Friuli and researched this book for more than five years. That kind of dedication is evident. The book is a curious hybrid - a cross between a travel book (I can't wait to book a trip to Friuli after reading this book) and an inspirational cookbook. It is filled with hundreds of gorgeous color photographs of the region and the culture. She has several favorite restaurants that are mentioned in the book, and I think they are described so well that anyone thinking of booking passage to Friuli will include them on their itinerary. All of the photographs are lushly oversaturated with color, and their lushness is breathtaking. The production values of this book are extraordinary. A large-format book in full color is expensive to produce, but the list price on Flavors of Friuli is about what a novel goes for these days. Not long ago, you'd have had to pay $40 or $50 for a book of this size and quality.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
I loved it from start to finish, and it's one of those books that you put on the coffee table to share with everyone who visits!
The book is efficiently organized into three major sections, one each for the northern, central and southern regions of Friuli. Each section contains appetizer, primi, secondi, contorni and dolci (desserts) courses. Each section also describes the geography and cultural influences of that area and delves a tad into the history of the region. I found it fascinating reading.
We can't ignore the recipes either. I remember my Italian grandmother making a few of them, like the bacala (salt cod), polenta, strucchi and sacher tortes. The recipes are clear and easy to follow. Because many Italians cook instinctively, using what my mother used to call the "dump method" (meaning: use a recipe as a starting point only, and include whatever ingredient in whatever quantity you think is appropriate today), getting an accurate Italian recipe is difficult. Methods of cooking are not only regional, they can vary even within a small town, and every cook is proud of his or her way of making a dish. Therefore, capturing specific flavors is sometimes an elusive task. I tried several recipes and they were extremely close to those dishes I recall my grandmother making. The recipes seem to be adaptable. I'm allergic to hazelnuts, so I just left them out when I made the sacher torte, and it came out great.
This is one of a very few books that I consider so well produced that I gave it five stars and will absolutely recommend it to my friends! I can't wait for the next book from Ms Crawford.
Posted May 3, 2010
A Wonderful Book!
This is a beautiful book. It's approximately 350 pages. The pictures are beautiful and the author tells a bit about the regions that the reciepes come from. The reciepes come from the Northeastern tip of Italy. This isn't like your run of the mill cookbook. The receipes are super easy to make and really really good. This would make a great gift and is highly recommended. CiaoWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.