by Rick Rodgers

Andrews McMeel Publishing, $19.99, 156 pages

Meatballs are universally loved throughout the world, and the author had an easy time to choose 50 recipes from an international repertoire. Meatballs are so versatile that they may be used in any course of the meal with the exception of dessert. And here they appear as starters, in soups and sauces, in sandwiches, and even on the grill. The recipes are not simple and most will take some time to prepare but you will find most ingredients readily available. The 11-page introduction gives the cook everything worth knowing about meatball preparation. The recipe writing and instructions are very good, and easy to follow. However, the author must have timed preparation in a professional kitchen, as times for a home kitchen can easily double.

It is unfortunate that whoever designed the layout didn’t think of the convenience of the cook. Many recipes flip over subsequent pages making preparation awkward. The sidebars are useful (e.g. giving sauce suggestions for store-bought meatballs).

The photographer must have had a ball creating the full-page illustrations for this small-format hard-cover cookbook; they are eye-catching, unusual and truly artistic. Many illustrate recipes though not many cook will be able to reproduce the results. The index is good.

Reviewed by George Erdosh,