I just learned about AmazonEncore which is a new publishing program that re-introduces overlooked books to wider audiences. Books are chosen based on customer reviews and are then re-published and distributed via Amazon, the Kindle Store, Audible.com, and independent bookstores. I was sent a review copy of The Berry Bible by Janie Hibler which is a James Beard Foundation book award nominee and was just re-released by AmazonEncore. It’s part berry encyclopedia covering every berry you can name and several you might not know and part recipe book including sweet and savory dishes for all those berries. And, you could win a copy of the book. Just leave a comment with your email on this post before Saturday 24 July 2010 at 8:00am when I’ll randomly select a winner and contact that winner for mailing information. AmazonEncore will ship the book anywhere, so this giveaway is open to everyone.
As I read through the encyclopedia portion of the book, I learned the differences between highbush blueberries, the kind that grow in Texas and many other parts of the US, and lowbush blueberries which are found in the northeastern US and in British Columbia. I also learned about cloudberries which grow in sub-arctic regions and have a very high level of vitamin C. Jostaberries are a hybrid of currants and gooseberries, and the information about every berry’s history, habitat, and common names in different parts of the world can be found here. The types of recipes you’ll find are categorized by beverages, breads, soups and salads, main courses, sauces, preserving, frozen treats, pies and tarts, cakes, and other sweet treats. A few dishes caught my eye like grilled paprika chicken with blackberry sauce, American barbeque sauce made with marionberries or blackberries, blueberry and toasted walnut conserve, spicy cranberry-horseradish relish, and chocolate-espresso hazelnut cake with raspberry glaze. There are recipes for all seasons as frozen and dried berries are mentioned in addition to fresh. I was intrigued by the savory use of berries in the salads and main courses, and my first stop was the red rice salad with blueberries.
I used red jasmine rice, but I think brown rice would be delicious here as well. The cooked rice was cooled and combined with toasted hazelnuts, dried cranberries, dried chopped apricots, and minced red onion. The dressing was made with lime juice, honey, ginger, lime zest, olive oil, and salt and pepper. The dressing was added to the salad with fresh blueberries which were gently folded into the mix. Then, the rice salad was served over lightly dressed salad greens. It seemed like this might be a rather sweet salad with so much dried fruit in addition to the fresh blueberries, but the onion and olive oil balanced the flavors well. The varied textures from chewy fruits to crunchy nuts and the mix of sweet, tart, and savory tastes made this salad great. Now, I’m thinking ahead to fall when I can try the persimmon, apple, and pickled cranberry salad and to next spring for the roasted asparagus with raspberry vinaigrette.
Random number generator selected "10." Esi from Dishing Up Delights has won the book. Congratulations Esi!