Thursday, January 3, 2008

REVIEW: barbecues & marinades

Book reviews are rated on the ‘Stains Per Book’ method. We aren’t looking for pristine picture books on this blog. We want books that will be a resource. Dog eared pages and sauce stains are our earmark for success.

5 Stains Per Book (SPB) describes the ultimate book for our purposes. 1 SPB would denote a book that deserves to be left on the shelf.

barbecues & marinades (lower case intentional)
By Sylvie Tardrew and Marcel Duffas
1 Stain Per Book
125 pages, Hachette Illustrated

I almost feel guilty reviewing this book. Every review is subjective to some degree. Our perspective at the BBQ Sauces blog is very narrow and specific. I vacillated for over two weeks on my decision to post this review, but I came to the conclusion that as it was a book entitled ‘barbecues & marinades’ I would discuss it with an explanation.

If I could use the collective ‘us’ to describe true BBQ enthusiasts, this book is not aimed at ‘us’. You are not going to find anything directed towards the cook that enjoys ‘low and slow’. The authors, who I believe are French, use the term barbecue to mean grilling. There are no recipes for sauce, but there are six recipes for marinades. There are no recipes for true barbecue, but there are recipes for grilled meats, fish, poultry and vegetables.

This is a visually stunning book. ‘barbecues and marinades’ is adorned with lush, beautiful photos that do more than illustrate the recipes. The gorgeous pictures push this into the category of coffee table books.

The recipes look solid, but seem a bit sparse. There is no discussion of exact temperatures, fuel source or types and cuts of meat. If you are a proficient backyard cook, you should be fine with the information given.

In conclusion, if I were to review this book on it’s visual appeal it would get our highest rating. Unfortunately it (inadvertently) misrepresents its subject matter and can’t be recommended for our purposes.

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