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"To read a book about a country's cuisine isn't simply to go looking for 'good things'; it is also to better know - by means of the recipes - the customs and the richness or poverty of a place, and the spirit of those who inhabit it. It is above all, to participate in the symbolic celebration of the shared repast."

~ Ginette Olivesi-Lorenzi, La Cuisine Mentonnaise



Savoring Tuscany : Recipes and Reflections on Tuscan Cooking

Savoring Tuscany : Recipes and Reflections on Tuscan Cooking (The Savoring Series)
by Lori De Mori

Part of the Savoring Series, which is one of my favorite series of books about Regional Cuisine, Savoring Tuscany is a beautiful book filled with sumptuous recipes and delectable writing about the cuisine and culture of Tuscany. As with all the books in the series, Savoring Tuscany is put together beautifully and all of the recipes are well written and presented. The recipes that we tested were all superb and the book is an excellent source for fans of Tuscan cuisine.


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Recipe - Thai Pumpkin Soup
by Mary Suttirat Kennedy

This is a favorite recipe for introducing people to Thai food. It is nothing like what they expect Thai food to be but is very good.

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Thai Pumpkin Soup

Recipe Submitted by Mary Suttirat Kennedy.

"This is a favorite recipe for introducing people to Thai food. It is nothing like what they expect Thai food to be but is very good."

2 tablespoons peanut oil
2 minced shallots
2 teaspoons minced fresh gingerroot
2 minced hot Thai chiles
4 cups chicken stock
3/4 cup coconut milk
1 tablespoon finely chopped lemongrass
2 tablespoons fish sauce
2 cups pumpkin puree
1/2 teaspoon palm sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1/3 cup chopped cilantro root or stems and leaves
Salt
Pepper
3 tablespoons chopped roasted peanuts (garnish)
3 tablespoons sliced scallions (garnish)

Heat the oil in a medium saucepan and saute the shallots, gingerroot, and chiles over moderate heat, stirring, for three minutes. Add the stock, coconut milk, lemongrass, fish sauce, pumpkin puree and sugar. Bring to a simmer, then cook, uncovered, over low heat, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes. Stir in the lime juice and cilantro. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately and sprinkle with the peanuts and scallions.

Makes 6-8 servings.