The angle: You want pickles? You got pickles! From Japan to India, here are enough pickling ideas to keep you busy all summer long.
Recipes for right now: Puckery Eggplant in Mustard Pickles, "Wasabi" Pickled Carrots, Stuffed Cucumber Kimchi, Pickled Shallots, Salt-Cured Long Beans with Ginger, Paneer-Stuffed Pickled Chiles, Thai Pickled Cabbage
Who would enjoy this book? Pickle-lovers
• Who wrote it: Karen Solomon
• Who published it: Ten Speed Press
• Number of recipes: 75
• Other highlights: Pickling might be just starting to catch on here in the U.S., but pickles and their preserved cousins have been an integral part of Asian cuisine since its inception. This book brings all the major pickles found in Japanese, Korean, Chinese, Indian, and Southeast Asian cuisine under one roof — plus some modern riffs called "Inspired Pickles" that are Karen's own invention. If you've been craving homemade versions of the condiments found on the tables of your favorite Asian restaurants, this is the book for you.
Ever since her first book Jam It, Pickle It, Cure It, I have loved Karen's straight-forward and step-by-step approach to recipes. She manages to give you just enough information without overwhelming you with details — it feels like she's hanging out right next to you at the stove, telling you what to look for and when to do things the way of a good friend coaching you along.
Besides the recipes themselves, Karen also makes sure to go over ingredients — both those that might feel unfamiliar to an American audience and those that we might be using in new ways — as well as basic pickling techniques, suggestions for serving and cooking with pickles, and the basic details on the pickles of each region. Taken all together, this book is a comprehensive guide to anything and everything related to Asian-style pickles.
Find the book at your local library, independent bookstore, or Amazon: Asian Pickles by Karen Solomon
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(Image credits: Emma Christensen)