LIFE AND FOOD IN THE BASQUE COUNTRY by Maria lose Sevilla

LIFE AND FOOD IN THE BASQUE COUNTRY

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A mushroom-hunter and a shepherd-cheesemaker, both sellers at the bustling Wednesday market at Ordicia; a farm woman content to spend her life at home except for daily walks to sell her milk and vegetables in the village; a fisherman; a maker of wooden milk-pails who begins his operation by felling the birch trees he's used; a cider-house proprietor; a city housewife; and a professional restauranteur who combines Basque tradition with the new style inspired by Paul Bocuse: With these figures as anchors for her food-centered portrait of what she projects as a food-centered culture, Basque native Sevilla mixes descriptions of everyday life, meals, and food preparation--past, present, and disappearing--with recipes for the dishes her subjects or their relatives prepare. Sevilla shows us a region where almost all the men can cook, however justified their reputation as violent and warlike, and where the men's clubs are Gastronomic Societies whose members cook for each other all year and, in San Sebastian, sponsor that city's most important festival, the Tamborrada--which begins with processions of drummers dressed as chefs and soldiers and ends with feasting at the societies' headquarters. Some of the simple recipes reproduced here are easily emulated; a few require specific local ingredients. But this charming and unobtrusively scholarly book's chief value is in its deep immersion in the traditional foodways of a changing but fiercely traditional culture.

Pub Date: June 20th, 1990
ISBN: 1561310352
Publisher: New Amsterdam