Street Food: Authentic Snacks from Around the World by Carla Diamanti and Fabrizio Esposito
The sign hanging from the vendor’s tent advertises something that sounds unpretentious, and it is: Cheese and Corn. But these grilled sandwiches, made with whole-corn cornbread rounds and mozzarella cheese attract long lines of loyal fans who may have the opportunity to eat them only once or twice a year. The scene is in the mountains of Western North Carolina, where street food is only available at festivals, carnivals, and fairs with few exceptions (like the hot dog cart in downtown Asheville). The fare served represents a variety of areas and cultures, and is often the most exotic food available in some of the cities and towns in the region.
Street Food: Authentic Snacks from Around the World, by Carla Diamanti and Fabrizio Esposito, is a visual feast. Scrumptious, sensual photographs introduce dishes unknown to many of us, and tease us with delights we’ve never seen but are commonplace in other parts of the world.
People who freely indulge from hot dog carts and pretzel vendors may realize they are picky eaters when they see a photo of a butcher, surrounded by raw meat, sitting on the ground with a tree stump for his cutting surface. The sweet potatoes baked over coals in Chengdu and Shaoshan, China, are tempting, but elegantly skewered grasshoppers, pupas, and seahorses in Beijing may not appeal to the Western palate.
A dazzling variety of breakfasts, lunches, dinners, beverages, and snacks—substantial or light—is available on world streets in marketplaces, parks, and even alleys, and reflects a plethora of cultures and lifestyles. Street Food brings them all together, from the simple to the sophisticated. It is a Cook’s tour of world cuisine—some familiar, some exotic—that is a pleasure to read but also serves as an entrancing picture book for foodies. Some recipes are included (although finding ingredients could be problematic), and creative cooks will be inspired to experiment and improvise.
With the holidays fast upon us (you don’t think so? Check out the stores!), keep Street Food in mind for friends who enjoy food in all its variations. It is scheduled for release September 15, 2011.