Vanilla: Travels in Search of the Ice Cream Orchid

Front Cover
Grove Press, 2005 - Cooking - 278 pages
15 Reviews
From the islands of Tahiti to the botanical gardens of London and Paris, "Vanilla traces the story of the vanilla plant and its secretive trade, from the golden cups of Aztee emperors to the ice-cream dishes of U.S. presidents. Vanilla has mystified and tantalized man for centuries. The only orchid that porduces and agriculturally valuable crop. vanilla can mask unpleasant tastes and smells, but also makes pleasant tastes stronger, smoother, and longer lasting. Because of its over four hundred separate flavor components. choosing premium-quality vanilla beans is as complex as judging the aroma and taste of fine wine. Vanilla finds its way into over half of all dessert products sold worldwide, from ice cream to chocolate mousse, as well as the finest perfumes., well-known brands of rum and vodka, and even Coca-Cola and Pepsi. Americans consume more vanilla than anyone else on Earth--a fact that has helped drive the price of vanilla beans and flavor extracts to an all-time high, and forced growers and traders to mount armed guard over their plants in the tropical jungle. The traders who travel the world in search of America's favorite flavor are a small and secretive elite. From Papantla in Mexico--"the city that perfumed the world"--to the South Seas, Madagascar, and the Indian Ocean islands, "Vanilla is a globe-trotting adventure that follows buccancers, aristocrats, and gourmets. all in search of the ice cream orchid.
 

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Review: Vanilla: Travels in Search of the Ice Cream Orchid

User Review  - Carson McFarlane - Goodreads

I love books like this...the history of this once exotic, now world reknowned bean of flavour. Fascinating information, yet another reason why I'd like to visit Madagascar. Amazing how complicated these little beans are to pollinate and to process! Read full review

Review: Vanilla: Travels in Search of the Ice Cream Orchid

User Review  - Chelsea - Goodreads

More reviews available at my blog, Beauty and the Bookworm. So, I have a thing about food. It's no secret. I have a fabulous metabolism now, but let me tell you, when I get older, I am going to be so ... Read full review

Contents

Black Flower
1
An Indian Secret
20
The City that Perfumed the World
33
Mexican Money
54
From an English Garden
80
Ile Bourbon
94
Creole Hearts
108
The Slaves Crime
126
Empress of Tahiti
163
Murder in Madagascar
187
Ice Cream and Perfume
203
The Admirals Legacy
218
Vanilla Prince
236
Epilogue
266
Acknowledgements
269
Select Bibliography
273

Homage to Albius
149

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About the author (2005)

Ecott is a veteran reporter and producer for BBC World Service. His journalism has appeared in The Economist, Esquire, Conde Nast Traveler, and numerous international newspapers. A passionate marine environmentalist, he leads underwater tours as a certified Divemaster.

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