musings about food, travel, creativity and life

Eating Around the World–Vicariously!

This week I’ve been culling my book collection. In the process, I’ve rediscovered one stunning book that was given to us by our niece many Christmases ago. It’s Food Journeys of a Lifetime: 500 Extraordinary Places to Eat Around the Globe. The hungry gypsy in me is loving all of the book all over again.

Part of a National Geographic series, it is a large format book with stellar photography. There are nine sections, with such focuses as outstanding food markets and bazaars, great food towns, specialties of certain areas in both food and drink, and secrets of the kitchen. The latter section has a page devoted to such topics as Chile in Santa Fe (complete with recipe), Home-Eating in Havana, Beijing Cookery School, Spices of Rajasthan, Greek Island Kitchen (with yet another recipe), and more.  

And scattered through the book are Top 10 Lists–Cookery Schools in Italy, English Pubs, Restaurants on Top of the World, Unusual Food and Drink Festivals, Bike Tours for Foodies, and on it goes in mouth-watering ways.  I have especially enjoyed reading about places I’ve been and/or foods I’ve eaten…there’s a photograph of the deck at Nepenthe in Big Sur, the cafes of Vienna, the Rialto fish market in Venice –and foods I’ve tasted like the baguettes in Paris or the balsamic vinegar of Modena.   And then, of course, there are all of the hundreds of tempting places I haven’t been and foods I haven’t tasted…this long list includes New Zealand wines, Tex-Mex in San Antonio, Feijoada in Rio. Right!

What a rich diverse culinary world we live in. How lucky we are if we want to and can travel to experience it. And how fortunate, too, to have books that bring the world’s cuisines to us. I may just read a page a day and travel deliciously around the world from my own home, cup of coffee in hand.

I think this book is definitely worth a trip to the library or bookstore… or to your local market or travel agent!


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