Erica's Reviews > The Flavor Bible: The Essential Guide to Culinary Creativity, Based on the Wisdom of America's Most Imaginative Chefs

The Flavor Bible by Karen Page
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's review
Aug 24, 2011

did not like it
Read in August, 2011

I don't understand why so many people like this book. I found it to be both confusing and unnecessary. Anyone with a nose and a set of tastebuds can figure out that asparagus tastes nice with butter or that maple syrup goes with French toast or that LETTUCE works well with BACON, BREAD, and TOMATOES (this is blatantly obvious to anyone who has ever eaten a SALAD). And any person who has encountered horseradish can tell you that its flavor is quite strong (or, as the Flavor Bible calls it, "very loud"). Using this book made me want to bang my head against my desk, because the combinations are just all so darned obvious, even to a novice cook.

A book like this feels like a crutch or a pretension. I can't fathom what sort of cook refers to this book and says, "Oh-ho! I see that mozzarella and basil match up together according to this chart in my Flavor Bible. Then yes, I shall put those two things together!"

If you have eaten food, you already understand everything this book has to offer, or you can at least figure it out simply by smelling, tasting, and touching things - which is basically the most fun and interesting aspect of cooking, for most folks. You don't need charts and lists of "flavor affinities" to tell you what tastes good. Period.

The only aspect of this book that might be at all helpful are the seasons listed for each ingredient, although this information is available in more convenient formats elsewhere.

I am glad I only checked this book out from the library, rather than going out and spending money on it.
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02/15/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-5 of 5) (5 new)

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Ruby Ann Not true. There are so many things in this book that will help with paring flavors together. Of course everyone knows the obvious. It's the ones that aren't obvious that make this book a treasure.

Sorenconard If you are only a novice chef, yet could have made all these 1,000s of pairings on your own, I can't wait until you get a touch more experince and open your resturant. From the way you talk, it will be AMAZING!!!

Eucratic Perhaps it is better to know ahead of time that asparagus tastes nice with butter, so we can avoid the less desirable combinations of ingredients.

Erica Leavitt Someone better call James Beard, because this girl apparently knows how to pair every ingredient based on common sense. *eye roll*

message 5: by Kindlebum (new)

Kindlebum WRONG!

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