Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Books I'm Reading: A Perfect Red

I Just finished reading Amy Butler Greenfield's A Perfect Red (Harper Perennial, 2006), which is a history of cochineal, the insect-derived dye that is still considered the best natural red dye--for everything from textiles to food (although the book doesn't mention it, I believe cochineal is the only insect matter approved by the FDA as a food additive). It's always a pleasure to read popular history that's well written. Engaging and taut throughout. A brief history of the world from the perspective of a single commodity. Recommended.

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