by Sybil PrattNovember, 2007
El mas grande
Two years ago, Phaidon, a publisher known for its high-quality art books, took a culinary detour and offered the English-speaking world The Silver Spoon, the Bible of Italian cooking and Italy's best-selling cookbook for more than 50 years. Obviously, that detour was the right road, so now the fine folks at Phaidon have delivered 1080 Recipes by Simone and InÅ½s Ortega, the first English translation of the Bible of Spanish cooking, an instant classic when originally published, selling more than 2 million copies. I've been hearing that Spain is the new France for foodies and trendy cooks, but this rich, complex, multiregional cuisine doesn't need to be the new anything, and should be treasured for its authentic self. And here are the recipes to prove it from the beloved, like paella, gazpacho and flan (all with many variations) to a thousand more dishes divided into 17 chapters from appetizers to desserts. Simone and her daughter InÅ½s have worked to keep 1080 Recipes up-to-date, accessible and doable at home, modifying, removing and adding recipes over the years. Here's a new kitchen stalwart that might have been subtitled The Spanish Joy of How to Cook Everything.