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The Sweet Life in Paris: Delicious adventures in the world's most glorious – and perplexing – city (May 28, 2009)

book review
by Dean Tudor, www.deantudor.com

The Sweet Life in Paris: Delicious adventures in the world's most glorious – and perplexing – city (Broadway Books, 2009, 282 pages, ISBN 978-0-7679-2888-5, $24.95 US, hard covers) is by renowned pastry chef David Lebovitz. He currently lives in Paris, leads chocolate tours and teaches cooking.

He moved to Paris in 2002 to start a new life, near the Bastille. But he soon found that the French were a "strange" people. It took him a while to come to grips, and this book is his story. He deals with the ironclad rules of social conduct (appearance and image is everything) which dominate life in Paris.

Much material is derived and codified from his blog at www.davidlebovitz.com. It is written in memoir style, with about 50 recipes added. Avoirdupois measurements are used, but there is no metric table of equivalents. At the end of the book, there is a list of some favourite food haunts in Paris.

This appears to be a good guide, based on my own memories. There is no index but there is a listing of recipes.

Audience and level of use: armchair travellers, those who have been to Paris
Some interesting or unusual recipes/facts: absinthe cake (his blog also has absinthe ice cream), bacon and blue cheese cake, fig-olive tapenade, chicken mole, peanut slaw
The downside to this book: the listing of recipes is alphabetical by title, so you have "warm goat cheese salad" at the end under W
The upside to this book: good writing style, with sidebars and glosses of comments
Quality/Price Rating: 89

 

 

 

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