Review (and giveaway!) of Planet Barbecue by Steven Raichlen
*See the bottom of the review for the giveaway information
Planet Barbecue is an all-new, globe spanning cookbook from Steven Raichlen. It follows the format of his other "big" books, Barbecue Bible, How to Grill, and BBQ USA. It is a monster of a book. Stephen leaves no stone unturned in his worldwide search for recipes.
*He has said that he is going to step away from grilling books for a while; he thinks he has covered the topic in depth, and wants to try something new. I thought the same thing...two books ago. Stephen keeps finding new places to explore, and sniffing out new grilling recipes. So, here's my personal plea. Stephen! Don't go! We still need you!
This book is stuffed with inspiration for a griller looking for something new to try. I've got two dozen recipes tabbed for future use...and that's only because I ran out of tabs.
I've already tried out some of these recipes; I was inspired by his section on Brazilian churrascarias. See my posts for Rotisserie Chicken Legs and Picanha. I can't wait to branch out into other sections of the book.
My only quibble with Planet Barbecue is the index. Specifically, there is no separate listing of rotisserie recipes in the index. (Or spit-roast recipes, as Stephen calls them). As my long-time readers know, I live for new rotisserie recpies. Stephen has always had strong rotisserie selections in his cookbooks, and I was worried he abandoned me. I shouldn't have doubted him; he has more rotisserie recipes in this book than in any other book he's published. But the only way to find them is to read through the entire book.
*Not that this was a great hardship - I couldn't put it down.
**Yes, I read entire cookbooks. I skim the recipes by reading the recipe header to get a feel for it, and to see if I want to read the specifics of how it is done.
Planet Barbecue, like all of Stephen's cookbooks, has a lot of non-recipe information in it.I love his profiles of famous grillers and their restaraunts. His country overviews, where he explains the grilling culture of a specific country, are worth the price of the book alone. The amount of research that went into this book is staggering
*He also has a strong opening section where he explains the basics of grilling. His How To Grill is the best intro to grilling I've found, but this book wouldn't leave a beginner out in the cold. There is enough basic information for them to be able to get started.
Planet Barbecue Giveaway
As you can probably tell, I loved this book. I contacted the publisher, Workman, to see if I could get a copy for a giveaway. They were very generous - they gave me THREE copies. It's giveaway time!
To enter the giveaway, leave a comment with your most inventive grilling recipe. One entry per person, and please make sure there is some way I can get in touch with you through the comment. (In other words...no anonymous comments, unless you identify yourself in the text of the comment.) Entries will be closed at 9PM EST on Sunday, June 6th and I will randomly select three lucky winners at that point. The winners will be announced Sunday. Good luck!
[Update 6/6/2010]: We have our winners! Random.org picked comments #10 (Alex), #6 (Pat) and #8 (Chris). Please email me with your contact information, so I can send you the cookbooks! Use the "Email DadCooksDinner" link in my profile on the top right of the page.
[FCC Disclosure: I received three free copies of this book for my giveaway.]
Steven Raichlen: Planet Barbecue
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