The Craft of the Country Cook by Pat Katz


Softcover. Condition: Very Good. 1988. Hartley & Marks Publishers. Illustrated.

Katz offers city and country dwellers alike an entertaining and useful guide for handling, preparing and storing food. The volume is organized by alphabetical entries such as herb seeds, jam and jelly, lard and other fats, milk, pork and quinces. In a friendly and encouraging manner, food writer Katz discusses topics as diverse as freezing vegetables, grinding grains and protecting them from insect damage, handling seaweed, peeling hard-boiled eggs, killing and skinning lambs and sheep, drying tomatoes, clarifying soup stock and making fresh cheese. Formal recipes, which comprise the smaller part of the text, also demonstrate variety: goose liver pilaf, grape catsup, persimmon pudding, Finnish rutabaga pudding, watercress soup and scrapple. The focus is on usefulness and nutrition; for example, the "cookie" entry offers only five recipes and they are more healthful than exuberant. Certain cursory sections, notably "wine" and "wild foods," are appropriate as introductions only. Illustrated.