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Gastro Obscura: A Food Adventurer's Guide (Atlas Obscura)

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From those ever-curious, ever-quirky minds behind the New York Times bestselling Atlas Obscura comes an unputdownable guide that marries our endless appetite for travel with our insatiable interest in food. Like a five-star hotel’s platter-stacked buffet artfully arranged to please the eye and palate, Gastro Obscura stimulates aplenty, with hundreds of rich morsels to peruse and savor. This is a strange book that takes you on a trip around the world, exposing you to the weirdest foods and all their odd history. Dylan Thuras is the cofounder and creative director of Atlas Obscura, as well as a co-author of Atlas Obscura and The Atlas Obscura Explorer’s Guide for the World’s Most Adventurous Kid. One of the smartest additions to the book is a little paragraph next to each entry that tells you how to go about trying the food in question.

A version of this article appears in print on , Section D, Page 3 of the New York edition with the headline: To Explore: Spanning the Globe For Culinary Oddities . From historical background to recent discoveries, long-held myths to unusual facts, this book is a wonder! And just think of all of the interesting conversations this book will generate if you leave it out on the coffee table for others to browse. The creative team behind the sensation Atlas Obscura brings us a food journey filled with recipes, illustrations and other surprises. A tome to be savored" - Foreward Reviews "[A] casual and fun and yet intelligent treatment of what essentially is a food encyclopedia on the world and its cuisines.In the Middle Ages, the bestiary a type of book which recorded and illuminated both real animals and imagined monsters in wonderful pictures. In these pages, you'll find riveting stories of human culture ancient and present, history, climate, mythology, commerce and geography -- all through the lens of that thing you thought you already knew: food. Like I posted in my status, this is Andrew Zimmern's Bizarre Foods for readers with many fewer testicles than the television show. For example, a section on Australia includes a collection of information about a melon festival, a coconut cult, the world's oldest emu farm, and wild rice conversation art. Perhaps because it is Great Britain and Ireland and I am familiar with these countries and their food that the book lacks interest?

This might be a fairly general tip (“The days of cocaine-laced bordeaux are over, but try regular bordeaux – it’s very good.This compendium is a must-have for those who like their pickles brined in Kool-Aid or crave the chewy texture of Inuit blubber cubes. I checked it out from my local library and read it over the course of six weeks, which isn't really ideal. Not just the facts, but a deeper insight into the people behind the foods; what things meant to them and how those forces were changing. There are cod tongues in Eastern Canada; pickles brined in Kool-Aid, a specialty in the Mississippi Delta; and the cafeteria on the grounds of the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, open to tourists who must pass through a radiation detector.

Each entry has "How To Try It" guidance for finding the dish (in its place of origin or online) or making it at home. It's generously illustrated with color photos and drawings, and each food includes a "how to try it" blurb for those who want to sample that particular oddity. What better way to get everyone talking over sandwiches than to discuss that the first sandwich was NOT invented by the Earl of Sandwich, but by the Han Chinese 2,000 years earlier or The Cheese Sandwich Scandal of the Masters Tournament? Even those with out money had honey, apples, strawberries, apples, pears, plums, raspberries, red currants and blackberries.

Or, the more esoteric florilegium, (from the Latin for ‘flower petals’) that gather quotes from other books into an easy reference source. Anyone from foodies to history buffs will enjoy it whether reading it from cover to cover or just flipping through at leisure. You can change your choices at any time by visiting Cookie preferences, as described in the Cookie notice. This is perhaps most apparent when it comes to food, which is a visceral reminder of how our cultures simliar and how they are the same. Pretty good grouping though I am wondering why the restaurant in the Smithsonian Museum of the American Indian was included - the NAMAAHC is included.

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