Book Review: Edible French Garden

Edible French Garden (Edible Garden Series, 3) Edible French Garden by Rosalind Creasy

My review


rating: 3 of 5 stars
Like the other books in Creasy’s Edible Garden series, this is a combination cookbook and gardening book. I think of this as a good way to whet one’s appetite, but it’s not a comprehensive reference—except perhaps on how to grow blanched vegetables like Belgian endive and white asparagus. After reading her instructions, I’ve decided that blanching in the gardening sense is not something I plan on trying anytime in the near future. Reading this book did get me interested in learning more about potagers, however, which strike me as having the potential to be both remarkably decorative and appetizing.

The varieties highlighted include French ones and American varieties that are similar to French types. I found at least a few of the recipes to be somewhat interesting, though, and will probably try making some. The braised endives and cherville buttered carrots come to mind. Most of the recipes are fairly simple and suitable for novice cooks. If you’re looking for more elaborate dishes, you’re better off going with a real cookbook.

The resource list is one of the best parts, in my opinion, since finding less common French varieties can be difficult. Likewise, I’ll be looking into many of the volumes she mentions in her bibliography. I also have to say that the photography is wonderful, and it’s worth at least flipping through just for the pictures.

I’ve decided that I want to read the other books in this series, but I know that I’ll be sifting for nuggets rather than considering them regular references.

Book source: Montgomery County, PA, Public Library System

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Flamel

Remember Nicolas Flamel? If not perhaps you should (re)read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (or Philospher’s Stone if you’re not in the US). Better yet, perhaps you should pay a visit to Le Musée National du Moyen-Age in Paris, where there is apparently a statue of Nicolas Flamel. Turns out that Flamel was an alchemist in Paris during the middle ages. I think I’m adding that museum to my list of places to visit.

This piece of incredibly useful information was gleaned from the August 20, 2008, edition of Les Paris Sont Ouvert on RFI.