This is not why I chose to review this book and I promise that I'm not being biased about it either.
For me the glue that binds any cookbook to the recipes inside of them are the pictures. Okay, granted the pictures don't tell you how to cook the meals. HOWEVER, the pictures are what makes the recipe look oh so very nom nom nom.
I bought Julia Child's cookbook because it's French cuisine and it's Julia Child. Also, I had just finished watching the movie Julie & Julia and became very inspired. Upon perusing the recipes, it wasn't just the size of the book or the font of the words that scared me off of it ... it was the lack of photos! And those little pencil drawings do not count. Needless to say, I didn't spend hours pouring over each recipe as I did with Jamie Oliver's book. There was just no appeal to me.
I will admit that what drew me to this book is that it was filled with recipes from my motherland (maybe I am being biased). But, look at the cover of this book. Look at how vibrant the colours are ... they just pop right off the page. And that is what you can expect from the entire book. Every photo shows amazing details of not only the prepared dish, but of the individual ingredients that go into making each dish so mouth-watering.
It doesn't get much better than having a homemade glass of wine with a plate of pasta and enjoying it in some rustic town sitting next to a beaten up VW Beetle. Talk about simple pleasures.
Another aspect of this book that I really enjoyed are the stories that it told ... where the recipes came from ... the origins of the towns he visited ... the stories of the people who live there. He not only brought these meals to life, he brought the little towns to life as well. This wasn't just a cookbook, it was a journey.
If you can appreciate good food, a good cook and fantastic stories and photos, this is the next cookbook you need to have in your kitchen. All of your senses will thank you.