Here is a feast of words that will whet the appetite of food and word lovers everywhere. William Grimes, former restaurant critic for The New York Times, covers everything from bird's nest soup to Trockenbeerenauslese in this wonderfully informative food lexicon. Eating Your Words is a veritable cornucopia-a thousand-and-one entries on candies and desserts, fruits and vegetables, meats, seafood, spices, herbs, wines, cheeses, liqueurs, cocktails, sauces, dressings, and pastas. The book includes terms from around the world (basmati, kimchi, haggis, callaloo) and from around the block (meatloaf, slim jims, Philly cheesesteak). Grimes describes utensils (from tandoor and wok to slotted spoon and zester), cooking styles (a bonne femme, over easy), cuts of meat (crown roast, prime rib), and much more. Each definition includes a pronunciation guide and many entries indicate the origin of the word. Thus we learn that olla podrida is Spanish for 'rotten pot' and mulligatawny comes from the Tamil words milaku-tanni, meaning 'pepper water.' Grimes includes helpful tips on usage, such as when to write whiskey and when to write whisky.
In addition, there are more than a dozen special sidebars on food and food word topics-everything from diner slang to bad fad diets-plus a time line of food trends by decade and a list of the best regional snack foods. Even if you don't know a summer sausage from a spring chicken, you will find Eating Your Words a delectable treat. And for everyone who loves to cook, this superb volume is an essential resource-and the perfect gift.