Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 3 images

The Soul of a New Cuisine: A Discovery of the Foods and Flavors of Africa Hardcover – Sep 19 2006

See all 3 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
"Please retry"
CDN$ 42.70 CDN$ 42.25

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (Sept. 19 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0764569112
  • ISBN-13: 978-0764569111
  • Product Dimensions: 23.9 x 3.1 x 26.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 1.7 Kg
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #250,917 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Born Ethiopian, raised Swedish, and now one of New York City's top chefs, Samuelsson (Aquavit: And the New Scandinavian Cuisine) has written an exotic yet accessible book that will hasten the coming of the African fusion cookery he envisions. His 204 recipes and 258 color photos are enriched with personal and political history; as in his many condiments and sauces, the balance is right. While he stresses the diversity and bounty of the second-largest continent, he repeatedly describes African cuisine as poor people's cooking, crafted with simple tools and necessarily emphasizing starches, vegetables and big flavors. Whether it's rosemary for Honey Bread or turmeric, ginger and cinnamon in his Vegetable Samosas, herbs and spices are always sauteed in oil or tossed in a hot dry pan, to intensify and mellow. He even proposes toasting the cinnamon for the whipped cream accompanying his Ethiopian Chocolate Rum Cake. The recipe for the cake is typical: the batter is prepared in a single bowl, mixed with a spoon, and bakes up moist and gingerbread-like, with great keeping properties. Toasting the cinnamon takes seconds and is impressive in the complexity it delivers. (Oct.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Samuelsson established his reputation as one of the foremost exponents of contemporary Swedish cookery through Aquavit, his celebrated New York City restaurant. Now he travels to wholly new territory by returning to the land of his birth and the glorious traditions of African cooking. From his native Ethiopia he prepares injera, the country's staple fermented flatbread. Moroccan cooking, one of Africa's most sophisticated, contributes harissa, a fiery spice paste that warms many North African dishes. Cassava stuffs shrimp for a satisfying West African meal. Samuelsson substitutes beef for lamb in South Africa's renowned bobotie but takes care to preserve the dish's curry-influenced spicing. Jerk chicken, more generally associated with Jamaica, shows how African eating traditions have spread abroad. He does not flinch at using contemporary ingredients such as arugula and Yukon Gold potatoes to make his recipes attractive. The immensity and diversity of Africa make it difficult to comprehend a continent's varied cooking styles in a single book, but Samuelsson's achievement celebrates a little-known cuisine. Mark Knoblauch
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Inside This Book (Learn More)
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
Search inside this book:

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
5 star
4 star
3 star
2 star
1 star
See all 3 customer reviews
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most helpful customer reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By bachef on June 1 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a gorgeous book not only to read but to create with. As mentioned in another review, most ingredients are obtainable in Canada (in the larger cities and specialty shops). This is one of my favourite ethnic books - wonderful recipes and information. Am cooking from it tonight again. Highly recommended.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Eileen Cuisine on Feb. 11 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is actually by Markus Samuelsson, not Desmond Tutu (although he wrote the intro).
Beautiful and inspiring book. The recipes are flavourful, African inspired, but definitely European/North American friendly, too (I can find the ingredients here in Canada).
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By mmm on July 8 2010
Format: Hardcover
Very pleasantly surprised with the results after trying this cookbook. The ingredients are not difficult to find, the recipes are easy to follow, and the results are a wonderful, nonintimidating introduction to meals which are different than the usual North American cuisine. The book itself is a beauty! The photographs are gorgeous - perfect to curl up on the sofa and drool over. Cultural tidbits spice up the journey through African cuisine. Very accessible for North Americans. Highly recommend. I have had a lot of fun exploring these recipes.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 69 reviews
63 of 63 people found the following review helpful
Unbelievably Good Recipes. March 7 2008
By Tess - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am obsessed with this cookbook, especially now that I have had a chance to make some of the recipes. If you are looking for new flavors and interesting and challenging new foods to cook then I highly recommend you buy this book. Unlike some other reviewers, I did not buy this book for the travelogue aspect. I wasn't looking for an in depth encyclopedic knowledge of any specific country's cuisine. I was just looking for something new and different and delicious. I'm a cook and a foodie and I love ethnic cooking. This book is a great introduction to the trendiest new food in the US. My favorite so far has been the Crab Burgers, which feature easy black bean crab burgers topped with pickled cabbage and chili mayonnaise. I can still taste how unique and delicious they were. Everyone who tried them was blown away by their flavor, which can't really be imagined before you take a bite. While making all the components was a bit time consuming (but really not that bad) none of the recipes were terribly difficult. But I would say this book is geared more to more experienced home cooks and adventuresome eaters. Those with mundane palates probably should stay away.

In response to an earlier critique, I think that reviewer missed the gist of the book. The idea was to take the cuisine of various African countries and get the basic idea of it but then to expand that idea to something bigger. So the recipes keep a common ingredient but fix it in a unique way or use a technique with a unique combination of ingredients. I love this about the book. Samuelsson keeps techniques, such using a morter and pestle, that can't be matched with modern methods but uses modern technology, such as the mandoline, when it performs the needed task more easily, and in this case if your knife skills are lacking, with better results. I do agree, however, that the photographs that go with the recipes can be misleading. I'm still not sure what the Stir Fry Beef Stew is supposed to look like. The pictures on the pages with the recipe are vastly different and not labeled but both could be the stew in question.

All in all, I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves cooking and ethnic foods. The flavors are out of this world and the recipes are highly inspiring.
31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
An Impressive Work Nov. 25 2007
By A. Flamholz - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I just made a meal for 10 people from Marcus Samuelsson's new cookbook. 6 of them kept strict kosher, 3 of them were vegetarian, one was allergic to the entire nightshade family (tomatoes, peppers, potatoes, and eggplant), and another to hard cheese and chocolate. I still managed to produce a great meal with more than enough to eat for everyone and to introduce myself and my friends and family to flavors they might not otherwise have experienced.

The book is impressive both as an exploration of African culture through a Western culinary lens and as a source of widely varied, great, flavorful, and simple recipes. Marcus' perspective is intriguing because he grew up a European but was born an Ethiopian - he clearly feels a deep connection to Africa (especially Ethiopia) and somehow simultaneously commands the perspective of an insider and an outsider. A great read. I very highly recommend it.
62 of 69 people found the following review helpful
Fabulous Recipes Jan. 8 2007
By M. Davis - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I agree with B. Marold that the writing is weak, but who "reads" cookbooks? I got the book for Xmas and have made a few of the recipes, and they are HEAVEN. Last night: a roast chicken stuffed with olives, ginger, cardamom, lemon rind and rubbed with a mixture of cinnamon, cloves, turmeric, cardamom and ginger. Each bite burst with the individual flavors. I was in love. That recipe alone was worth the $26.40. And there are dozens more that I can't wait to try. This is food porn at its best.
25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
A Treasure Oct. 26 2007
By NuJoi - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I collect historical cookbooks and cultural cookbooks. This book is both! There is a ton of information about Africa. Samuelsson has divided its cuisine into four regions. Outside of Moroccan, I know nothing about African cuisine, so I found this book extremely helpful. The beautiful photography and personal stories really bring the dishes to life.

The book is divided into the following sections:
- Ingredients
- Spice Blends & Rubs: 11 recipes
- Condiments, Sauces & Dips: 13 recipes
- Salads & Sides: 9 recipes
- Breads & Sandwiches: 11 recipes
- Vegetables: 12 recipes
- Fish & Seafood: 10 recipes
- Poultry & Meat: 19 recipes
- Desserts & Drinks: 10 recipes

My favorite sections are the spice blends and condiments chapters. They add variety to simple stuff like grilled chicken breasts.

The U.S. has fully embraced cuisines from many parts of the world. Indian cookery seems to be our latest fascination. I applaud Samuelsson for pushing the envelope futher with the favorites of Northern, Western, Eastern and Southern Africa. As we explore more with our taste buds, these flavors will become just as welcomed to use as hot and sour soup.
35 of 43 people found the following review helpful
A good introduction, but not a great book Feb. 23 2009
By Robert London - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I really had high hopes for this book, and there is little else out there dealing with this region. It is a nice introduction to the ingredients but the recipes are lacking in detail, I am able to fill in the blanks but without a solid knowledge of cooking most recipes would be difficult to complete with complete success. And do not be fooled by its size, most of the pages are half full and although the book is well designed there are a lot of pictures - which means less talk of food and recipes. So think of it as training wheels, but it is not the bible of African cooking