Tips & Techniques Book Briefs Williams-Sonoma International Collection: Asian, French, Italian and Mexican
Williams-Sonoma International Collection: <i>Asian, French, Italian</i> and <i>Mexican</i>

Williams-Sonoma's International Collection reveals the secrets to re-creating the authentic flavors of faraway lands, from the spice markets of Asia to the bistros of France. These four new titles—Asian, French, Italian and Mexican—demystify international cuisines for novice and expert cooks alike.

The recipes in Asian, by San Francisco-based cooking instructor Farina Wong Kingsley, offer a tantalizing culinary tour of the East. The distinctive flavors of Asia's many cuisines are captured in the pages of this gorgeous cookbook: The fresh scent of Thai basil and Chinese chives. The deep flavors of palm sugar and fish sauce. The delicate textures of toasted nori seaweed and translucent rice paper. Helpful ingredient and technique tips abound. You'll learn how to make a light, crisp batter for vegetable and shrimp tempura, and how to extract the most flavor from aromatic ingredients for Thai shrimp and lemongrass soup. From small plates to sweet dishes, this book guides you through the preparation of an array of intriguing recipes.

Cookbook author Diane Rossen Worthington, who trained at London Cordon Bleu, presents the best of France's culinary traditions in French. Adapting old-world techniques to the modern kitchen, she features recipes for simple, soul-satisfying bistro fare, such as salade frisée aux lardons, as well as elegant dishes like cold lemon soufflé. Cooks will learn the importance of quality ingredients and equipment in preparing time-honored dishes. A special section explains how to prepare the mother sauces, the foundation of French cooking. And to ensure the best experience of classic cuisine, the author offers pointers on pairing wine and food, using recipes from the book as examples.

In Italian, veteran cookbook author and teacher Pamela Sheldon Johns shares her favorite dishes from the vibrant cuisine of Italy. You'll learn to prepare traditional dishes, such as robust osso buco (braised veal shanks) served atop risotto alla Milanese. Vitello tonnato, a chilled make-ahead dish that's perfect for entertaining, is a great recipe to add to your repertoire. The step-by-step directions for rolling, cutting and filling pasta show just how easy it is to prepare fresh, silky pappardelle or ravioli at home. And be sure to save room for dessert. The book includes much-loved Italian sweets like panna cotta, almond biscotti and, of course, tiramisù.

Author Marilyn Tausend, who has traveled extensively throughout Mexico, has gathered recipes from Chihuahua down to the Yucatan in the book Mexican. Chilaquiles with salsa verde offer an irresistible combination of fresh tomatillos and soft, tangy queso fresco cheese. Corn, central to Mexican cuisine, appears as large, nutty kernels of hominy, a key ingredient in hearty pozole verde soup. Learn the proper way to roast fresh chilies, prepare a new molcajete mortar for use, steam tamales, cook refried beans—and savor the spicy heat and complex flavors of Mexico.

Each book will show you how to prepare over 40 dishes in clear, concise steps. Full-page photographs bring the recipes to life, while informative sidebars and a glossary describe important ingredients and techniques. A special boxed set of these four international cookbooks makes the ideal gift for adventurous cooks and world travelers alike.