By Griffin Sweet
on 8.9.12

Traditional Japanese cooking can be incredibly daunting if you’re not, well, Japanese. Moé Takemura helps confused Westerners and Japanese expats alike in her Guide to the Foreign Japanese Kitchen ($49), which thoroughly and simply details the necessities of Japanese cuisine from ingredients to silverware. Each of the 30 meals in the book is laid out in plain, easily accomplished steps with accompanying images of ingredients, cooking tools and techniques. It’s like a cuisine picture book for gastronomes.

Most importantly, Takemura understands that rare or regional ingredients aren’t available to everyone, and provides excellent common substitutes from your neck of the woods, whether that be Kansas or Paris. A dash of historical context for each dish adds a perfect garnish. You’ll still need to learn how to use chopsticks, though.

Buy Now: $49

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