If there is one unifying factor among the many cuisine's of the world, it would perhaps be soups. Soups are part of almost every cuisine and have existed throughout history. Soups run the entire spectrum--from the opitimy of royal decadence to the watery "plat principle" of the world's poor. Each soup reflects the raw products and culinary philosophy of its regional or ethnic birthplace. Soups come in a dizzying array of variations. We all have memories of soup, whether it is the soup that mom made on that cold winter day, the tasteless one served in the school cafeteria, or the soup savored at a fine restaurant when you were celebrating a special occasion. Soup is universal.
The Soup Bible, written by Chef David Paul Larousse, is an encyclopedic work that represents the universality of soup. It is perfect for the person passionate about soup. The book is organized as most professional works on soup are: clear soups (consommé being the most famous), thick soups (purees, creamed and bisques), and regional/international soups. There is also fascinating category of chilled soups perfect for the hot summer months. Each category tempts the reader/cook with literally hundreds of concise, easy-to-follow recipes such as: oxtail consommé, thick lentil soup Russian style, Oyster soup Cancal style, Cioppino, Turkish potato soup, and chilled truffle consommé.
Of particular note is the section on regional and international soups. These are honest soups that have been refined throughout the centuries in the homes of everyday people (not by chefs) in different parts of the globe. These soups exhibit the most unique and surprising flavor combinations and also are sources of inspiration for the professional chef.
David Paul Larousse is no newcomer to cookbooks as he has also authored The Professional Art of Garde Manger and The Sauce Bible. The Soup Bible is another success and most recommended as you will use it for years.