Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The Spice Necklace (2009)

This book by Ann Vanderhoof is a delightful tour through many islands introducing the reader to the ingredients and people she found on her sailing tour through the Caribbean. It seems that there have been more than enough books about eating through France, Italy, and the Far East but this is the only one I can think of covering this area. Recipes follow the chapters and highlight the ingredients and meals she enjoyed and learned to make herself.

While many of the ingredients are not available in my part of the country, the book was enjoyable to read because the people they made friends with were so beautiful and the tours of farms and kitchens were fascinating.

Reading this book reminded me of several things I enjoyed growing up in St. Thomas. Saba is a small remote island which produces a spiced rum called Saba Spice. My family was given some by a man who worked in our boat yard who came from Saba. One fact that she failed to include about Saba was how the people of the island used to hunt whales. Another culinary factoid that brought back memories was how various herbs are sold in bunches that are just enough to season a particular dish.

Readers who enjoy culinary tours will enjoy this unusual tropical treat.

My rating for this book: ++++

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