Vegetable Literacy: Cooking and Gardening with Twelve Families from the Edible Plant Kingdom, with over 300 Deliciously Simple Recipes by
Deborah Madison is an excellent book which describes just about every vegetable classification for biologists, herbalists, nutritionists, food connoisseurs and dieticians everywhere.
The presentation is organized by vegetable family. Each member of the family is described in detail, with information about appearance, history, and nutritive value. The presentation is aimed at healthful eating of organic produce. The author explains how to literally cook vegetables from your own garden.
The book has an exhaustive classification system describing families like carrots, mints, sunflowers, legumes, cabbage and onions. The contents have fascinating botanical notes, family pairings, and companion flavors which explore vegetables from the ground up. The presentation provides the important distinguishing characteristics of fresh produce.
The following families are represented in the book:
- The Carrot Family
– The Mint Family
– The Sunflower Family
– The Knotweed Family
– The Cabbage Family
– The Nightshade Family
– The Goosefoot and Amaranth Families
– The (former) Lily Family
– The Cucurbit Family
– The Grass Family
– The Legume Family
– The Morning Glory Family
For instance, the carrot family includes angelica, anise, celery, chervil, dill and fennel. The mint family includes basil, bee balm, chia seeds, mint, oregano, sage and thyme.
The sunflower family includes artichoke, chamomile, endives, milk thistle and daisies. Legumes include alfalfa, chickpeas, fenugreek, lentils, mung beans and soybeans. The cabbage family includes arugala, bok choy, broccoli, horseradish, kale, radish, turnip and watercress.
Vegetable Literacy by Deborah Madison is an important botanical resource for a wide constituency of health buffs, students and professionals everywhere. The book is well written with many full color illustrations.