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August 2014 COTM Announcement Thread

Congratulations to Diana Henry as the votes are all in and Ms. Henry has won the day, we will be cooking from all of her works this August!

As per some preliminary discussion in the voting thread I am leaning towards selecting 3 or 4 of her more popular works, each of which will receive its own thread. In addition there will be a collective thread for her other works, and possibly a final thread for any online recipes not represented in her published works. If anyone has any feedback on this plan please feel free to share.

Otherwise please use this thread to discuss the upcoming COTM as we wait for me to post the links on the 1st of August.

In passing I did a quick search on EYB for Diana Henry recipes online and I came up with quite the haul, please see below:
http://www.eatyourbooks.com/library/r...

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  1. Well done, Delys! What a headache that must have been for you. This month has been awfully good thus far and I think next month will be just as good if not better.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Gio

      Always a pleasure. Looking forward to next month, mind you we are away much of the month but I'm still looking forward to it.

    2. couldn't wait! already made my first recipe from Salt, Sugar, Smoke. Can't wait for the thread to go up to post.

      1 Reply
      1. I've been traveling and managed to miss the whole nomination and voting. Oh, well. I certainly can't complain about the outcome! Looking forward to doing some cooking from my Diana Henry books next month.

        1. So, have the COTM and other tags (or whatever they were called) at the top of the Home Cooking board disappeared? Is there some easy way to get to the COTM announcement and nomination threads that I am overlooking?--Thanks.

          12 Replies
          1. re: nomadchowwoman

            Another Chowhound redesign fail. Apparently, you mouse over the little "i" in a circle next to the "Home Cooking" board title, and it will give you the list of sticky posts, including the COTM nomination, voting, and announcement threads. You have to be visiting the "Site Talk" board to know what happened. Oh, yeah, user friendly. We'll be getting lots of new COTM'ers with this scheme.

            1. re: MelMM

              Thank you, MelMM. I feared they had gone away (or that I was losing my mind). All these changes do strike me as somewhat silly--and not user-friendly at all.

              1. re: MelMM

                MelMM, thanks for the clarification. I've been wandering in the wilderness trying to find the COTM threads you name above. Would never have guessed about the little "i" in a circle if you hadn't helpfully explained it.

                1. re: Goblin

                  We probably all need to go over to the Site Talk board and discuss this, because I fear the new design will have a negative impact on our COTM participation. Especially for new participants. It would be a horrible thing to see COTM drop off just because people can't find the threads.

                  1. re: MelMM

                    Among many of the changes that have been foisted on us that 'i' for the stickies is one of the worst.

                    1. re: Gio

                      Yes because it is simply the wrong icon for the job. I do this for a living.... maybe I am not the best UI designer in the world, but at least I know to use universally recognized icons for universally recognized information.

                      In fact, the icons are the weakest part of the changes over the past week.

              2. re: nomadchowwoman

                Are the COTM threads up yet? Not sure if I just can't find them. I only use CH on my phone. Don't see an "i"? Thanks

                1. re: Siegal

                  The threads will probably be put up on the 1st of August, less than a day away, so anytime now.
                  I use only a home pc, but I see the little "i" in a small black circle next to the headline "Home Cooking".

                    1. re: blue room

                      Thanks Blue Room, I am about to leave for a holiday so the threads will actually be up a bit later today.

                      1. re: delys77

                        As this is your last month as coordinator, delys77, I just want to thank you for your service and awesome organizational skills, herding all us cats and our nominating and voting. Have a lovely holiday!

                        1. re: nomadchowwoman

                          Oh it's been a pleasure, thanks very much NMC and best of luck to Qianning.

                  1. re: jpr54_1

                    Yum--I am now officially looking forward to it. My book is scheduled to arrive today.

                    1. re: jpr54_1

                      Several folks (including me) have made and really enjoyed this recipe, as reported in the cooking-from thread.

                      I want to note that there's quite a discrepancy between the UK and US editions of the with regard to that fresh ginger. I've *no* idea where that 2/3 cup measure came from; the Serious Eats post notes that it took about a pound of fresh ginger to get that amount grated(no wonder she found it overwhelming!), but I believe the UK edition calls for 2 ounces of ginger rather than a given volume. I'd love for someone with the UK edition to confirm!

                        1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                          can you give link to the cooking from thread-
                          found the link
                          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8959...

                          what is the solution to the problem of the ginger?

                          1. re: jpr54_1

                            "what is the solution to the problem of the ginger?"

                            Not entirely sure about the problem you're referring to, jpr, but if it's that the ginger is overwhelming when one uses 2/3 cup, as the SE blogger suggests, then the solution is to use 2 oz, per the UK version of the book, instead of 2/3 cup grated.

                          2. re: Caitlin McGrath

                            Thanks! I didn't realize there was already a "cooking from" thread. That will surely help me choose recipes.

                            1. re: nomadchowwoman

                              The cooking-from thread has been very active, though most reports are from her prior books (and who knows, they may tempt you!). There are several reports from A Change of Appetite closer to the bottom of the thread.

                              1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                I finally (about time) gave in and bought Crazy Water, Pickled Lemons. Your posts, Caitlin, have had me chomping at the bit for it for a while now, and I figured now that there is a DH COTM it was time. I'm enjoying reading it, and think I'll find a lot to make in it.

                                That said, I highly recommend Pure, Simple Cooking for those who like quick, tasty dinners.

                            2. re: Caitlin McGrath

                              Very interesting; and timely. I made my first recipe from this book the other night and the accompanying mango salsa called for "1-1/4 cups peeled and grated ginger root." Overwhelming was just the word I used to described it, to say nothing of having difficulty figuring out exactly what the instruction was supposed to mean. Do you have the UK version? I wonder if it has a different measurement.

                              1. re: JoanN

                                Which recipe did you make? I have the UK version of most of her books, so I might have the recipe in question.

                                1. re: MelMM

                                  Thanks, Mel. It was the Spiced Pork Chops with Ginger and Mango Relish from ACoA.

                                  1. re: JoanN

                                    OK, the UK version of that recipe calls for 2 cm of ginger for the pork chops, and 120 g (4.5 oz) for the mango relish. That's quite a lot of ginger, but I have a hand in my fridge that is just over 120 g, and I can't really see it it being 1.25 cups if it were grated. Maybe half that. This is why I always try to buy the UK version of any book from a UK author. I don't trust the editors to make those conversions as well as I can. Or, in my case, I don't really make the conversion at all, as I have a scale.

                                    1. re: MelMM

                                      I have been debating whether I should order from the UK or not, and this reinforces my inclination to buy from amazon UK. My cousin just arrived from London, but I never have the courage to ask her to carry heavy books in her suitcase.

                                      1. re: MelMM

                                        Thanks, Mel. Gotta say, this is making me a little nervous.

                                        1. re: JoanN

                                          Makes me nervous, too, JoanN. Shades of River Cafe month?

                                          For those of you who have been cooking from DH's other books, have you noticed any persistent issues with the conversion to the US editions?

                                          ~TDQ

                                          1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                            I've cooked something like 16 different dishes (and repeated a few) from Pure Simple Cooking, which is the US title of Cook Simple, and haven't run into any apparent issues. I think there have been a few less-successful recipes reported on the cooking-from thread, but that discussion has revealed that it was most likely the fault of the recipe rather than a conversion problem.

                                            I will note that PSC is published by 10 Speed Press, while the other US editions of Henry's books are published by her UK publisher, Mitchell Beazley. I've made five or six things each from the other two books I have, Crazy Water, Pickled Lemons and ACOA. Notably, the US edition of CWPL (which is one of her earlier, perhaps even her first book) has relatively minimal conversion - the obvious ingredient terms are changed (e.g., cilantro and eggplant from coriander and aubergine) and the ingredients are listed by weight rather than volume, but US standard rather than metric - whereas they've gone for wholesale conversion in ACOA. As far as ACOA goes, the first recipes I made, including the Japanese Ginger and Garlic Chicken for which I noted the discrepancy upthread, were from online sources that reprinted from the UK edition. I didn't have any issues with the few other recipes I've made from the US edition, and I haven't seen anything other than the volumes of ginger in these two recipes that raised an eyebrow as I've perused the book, but I think I'll be reading closely and seeing if I can find UK versions to compare online in the event it's not just a ginger issue.

                                            1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                              Like Caitlin I've cooked quite a bit from Pure Simple, and a few things from ACoA. Having kept up with the cooking from thread I knew in advance about the ginger problem in that one recipe, and I have to say, it is the only problem I've encountered.

                                              1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                Thank you Caitlin! As always, I appreciate your thoughtful response. I feel reassured. If there are any other problems, I'm sure they'll come out during COTM as these books will be subject to a lot of scrutiny! It's interesting how her books seem to have evolved in terms of how far they've gone to convert them

                                                I own ACOA & Pure Simple and will probably start with the "cooking from" thread when I choose recipes. I've been intrigued about her books for a long time, notably the winter one (Roast Figs and Sugar Snow).

                                                How would you say CWPL compares to some of the other COTM's we've tried like Arabesque or TNBoMF or Ottolenghi in terms of premise?

                                                ~TDQ

                                                1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                  TDQ, apologies for missing your question about CWPL. I'll come back and post later today.

                                                2. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                  Well, MelMM noted a pretty hefty conversion error in Salt, Sugar, Smoke: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9843...

                                                  So it appears that, while the errors are not universal, there may be more of them lurking. I'm more inclined to agree with Mel now about defaulting to the original versions of UK books unless I'm confident in the publisher/author combination track record for conversions, and will look for online comparisons if anything looks questionable in ACOA (luckily, it had a ton of press and excerpts run when it was released).

                                                  1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                    I have all the books in the UK version and am more than happy to field queries.

                                                    1. re: greedygirl

                                                      I really appreciate that GG. Problem is, you don't know it's a problem until after you've made the dish. But I will be sure to query from here on in if anything sounds a little screwy to me when I first read through the recipe. And I must say, just reading the recipe I ended up making should have sent up red flags.

                                                      1. re: JoanN

                                                        Interestingly, (to me), none of the American books I've bought have been reformatted for a UK audience. I guess there aren't enough of us to make it worthwhile!

                                                        1. re: greedygirl

                                                          Or it could just be that the rest of the English speaking world can function if need be in both metric and imperial whereas most of the cooks in the US cannot. Shame.

                                                          1. re: JoanN

                                                            True, dat. I prefer metric for cooking, these days, but can cope with imperial and even cups!

                                                            1. re: greedygirl

                                                              I just sent Mitchell Beazley an e-mail saying that there seemed to be some conversion errors in the North American edition and asking if they had errata sheet. I don't have high hopes, but it made me feel better.

                                                              1. re: JoanN

                                                                Thank you on behalf of all of us, JN! I don't know how I got 6 Diana Henry cookbooks but I'm staring at them right now. To be honest, I don't think I've had any trouble with the ingredient amounts. That's not to say they're not there....

                                                                1. re: Gio

                                                                  Seems to be just with the ginger. At least so far. Perhaps because I spent a few companies' time and money making sure conversions were correct, it really aggravates me when they're not. There's just no way "60g (2oz) ginger, peeled and finely grated” translates to “⅔ cup peeled and finely grated ginger root.” They didn't even have to rewrite that one; just delete the 60g and all would have been fine. Aaargh!

                                                                  1. re: JoanN

                                                                    I hope that'll be it for ACOA, but errors are coming to light in other books; as I mentioned in a post above, MelMM identified another large discrepancy, in the harissa recipe in Salt Sugar Smoke, where the UK ed. calls for 100 ml (about 3.4 fl oz) olive oil, and the US ed. calls for 1 1/4 cups (12 oz, or almost 3x the original).

                                                                    1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                      That's just inexcusable. They didn't even look at a chart for that one. This is going to make me wary of all North American editions of Mitchell Beazley books. Must, must, try to remember to buy the UK version if one of their books becomes COTM again.

                                                                      1. re: JoanN

                                                                        I hope someone on the other side of the pond is reading this, because it has to be a serious problem with the outcome of a recipe. Just what the author or publishing house does not want.

                                                                        1. re: Gio

                                                                          Might be worth flagging it on Amazon, or emailing DH. She's pretty good at replying to stuff by all accounts.

                                                                          1. re: Gio

                                                                            My son now is the Head Reference ibrarian at a township library in NJ- I will send him a msg about the problem to see if he can tell you where to complain so that you get an answer?

                                                                              1. re: jpr54_1

                                                                                My son needs to know what are the titles of books with problems, names of recipes, and pages with the problems in each of the books

                                                                            1. re: JoanN

                                                                              Does information like this ever get to the author's website or Amazon?

                                                                              1. re: JoanN

                                                                                Oh, yes, let's remember to remind each other when embark upon discussions during the nomination process.

                                                                        2. re: JoanN

                                                                          I'll be interested to hear what, if anything, you hear back. I hate that US publishers' insistence that US cooks can't/won't deal with weights becomes a self-reinforcing mechanism. In the case of conversions of books originally using weights, they could just as easily add volume but retain the weights. That's the way 10 Speed Press handled the US edition of Jerusalem; it has volumes and weights given in both metric and standard. Instead, we get sometimes get faulty conversions - presumably based on someone looking at charts, not actually testing - that consumers discover when the recipes simply don't work.

                                                                            1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                              Agree, and I love the weights/measures in the us edition of Jerusalem. I wish all cookbooks did it that way.

                                                                            2. re: JoanN

                                                                              Unfortunately I bought both P.S. and ACOA used, which makes them harder to return. I'm still tempted, though, to ditch them and buy the UK versions. The problem is, the month has started and it will take them time to arrive. I suppose I could cook from my US version in the meantime and ditch them after the UK versions arrive. Seems almost pointless then.

                                                                              ~TDQ

                                                                              1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                                                I wouldn't ditch the US version of PSC. A bunch of us on the cooking-from thread have cooked extensively from it without finding any issues. But as I mentioned, it has a different publisher. It seems the conversion problems lie with the books from Mitchell Beazley.

                                                                                1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                                  Good point about the different publisher.

                                                                                  ~TDQ

                                                                                2. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                                                  I haven't had any problems with Pure Simple and I have the American version. In fact I *love* the book and have used it quite a bit for tasty, fast dinners.

                                                                                    1. re: LulusMom

                                                                                      I wouldn't ditch the US version of Pure Simple Cooking, either. I'm in agreement with the posters who really like PSC and have had good luck with its recipes.

                                                    1. re: delys77

                                                      Thank you for this and all your efforts as a coordinator! Enjoy your time away!

                                                      ~TDQ

                                                      1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                        My Pleasure!
                                                        And now I'm off, good luck with this month's COTM all, I'll check in to see all your lovely reviews whenever I can.