Edible : An Illustrated Guide to the World's Food Plants

edibleEdible : An Illustrated Guide to the World’s Food Plants is a National Geographic book. Slightly less big than coffee table book size. This book has a pretty complete listing of all forms of plant life that the world uses as food or drink in one form or another. Complete with the high quality, beautiful photographs of the plants and their edible portions, such pictures as the National Geographic is famous for. It is a book that would fit on any coffee table or place where one would want a fascinating book that one could read a while and then come back to later.

The book starts with an introduction and history of edible plants, the trade that started up to distribute them, the history of the foods indigenous to various continents, the plants the people of our world consider staple foods, and the future of plant based foodstuffs.

It then breaks the plants we use as foodstuffs into different categories  Fruits, Vegetables,Grains, Nuts, Herbs, Spices, Plants used in making beverages, and Plant sugars and other plant products such as oils and syrups. ‘Each of those sections is divided into entries of all the plants that fit in that category, each entry has a short concise history of that particular plant, some info on the plant and what part of the plant is used for food, and how it’s used in cooking, beverage making or other foodstuff usage.  The last section is an appendix with nutritional table and index. .

The book is concise and extremely interesting. I learned a lot about plants I never knew existed, as well as things about plants I already knew and ate myself. including a plant who’s fruit/vegetable is known by Southerners as a mirliton, but is better known to the world at large as a chayote. There is so much  info here, that it makes the book better to read in short stretches, or only read the parts that interest you.

Edible : An Illustrated Guide to the World’s Food Plants, a National Geographic book is Highly Recommended

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