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Cooking at Home with The Culinary Institute of America [Hardcover]

The Culinary Institute of America
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Sept. 30 2003
A complete illustrated volume of home-cooking lessons and recipes.

The Culinary Institute of America is the place where many of America's leading chefs have learned and refined their cooking skills, and its methods are widely revered as the gold standard among culinary insiders around the world.

Now everyone can learn from the best, with Cooking at Home with The Culinary Institute of America. This complete-and completely approachable-illustrated guide gives home cooks an outstanding course in the essentials of cooking along with a wealth of irresistible recipes. Drawing on the CIA's extensive expertise, it shares all the basic information on equipment, ingredients, and techniques needed to become a great cook, from proper knife skills to cooking methods such as braising, grilling, saut?ing, and stewing. Readers learn the techniques step by step, with detailed instructions and extensive color photographs that clearly explain both what to do and how to do it.

Perfect for practicing skills and building a repertoire, the book's 200 stylish recipes are delicious and easy to make, from Beef Satay with Peanut Sauce to Roast Chicken with Pan Gravy, from Shrimp in Chili Sauce to Pasta Primavera with Basil Cream Sauce, French Style Peas, and more.

Generously illustrated with 250 beautiful full-color photographs of techniques and finished dishes, Cooking at Home with The Culinary Institute of America is a complete package of home-cooking lessons and recipes that home cooks can use to master the art of cooking in their own kitchens.


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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

This superbly organized, stripped-down offspring of the CIA's New Professional Chef has the no-nonsense tone that results when dozens of teachers collaborate on a serious project: "Keep the blades of your knives sharp and well honed"; "Don't be tempted to leave the fish in the marinade for longer than 30 minutes." It's a refreshing sobriety amid the current mania for anecdotes in the home-cooking market. Less French than most school-driven texts, the book emphasizes basic techniques, from saut‚ing and roasting to portioning a chicken and making pasta. The recipe selections were edited with an equally heavy but sure hand: Puree of Split Pea, Roast Chicken with Pan Gravy, Beef Tenderloin with Wild Mushrooms, Gnocchi with Herbs and Butter. Each has an unobtrusive sidebar pointing out the relevant techniques (seeding tomatoes, melting chocolate). Even less familiar or more complex recipes-Roast Goose with Apple-Prune Sauce, Mole Poblano de Pollo, Steamed Cod with Gingered Hoisin Sauce-rely on sure-fire methods. Since pasta is a mainstay of home cooking, the carbonara-primavera-puttanesca trinity puts in an obligatory appearance, along with various types of ravioli and lasagne. Desserts are mostly of the simple showstopper variety: Chocolate Mousse and several classic cooking-school souffles. Look elsewhere, however, for game, sweetbreads, bread and pastry. Copiously photographed and filled with impressive-looking tables and charts (including 10 pages of weight/volume equivalents and temperature charts), this makes an ideal book for committed starting cooks, as well as culinary overachievers who occasionally need reminding of the basics.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Review

This superbly organized, stripped-down offspring of the CIA's New Professional Chef has the no-nonsense tone that results when dozens of teachers collaborate on a serious project: "Keep the blades of your knives sharp and well honed"; "Don't be tempted to leave the fish in the marinade for longer than 30 minutes." It's a refreshing sobriety amid the current mania for anecdotes in the home-cooking market. Less French than most school-driven texts, the book emphasizes basic techniques, from sautéing and roasting to portioning a chicken and making pasts. The recipe selections were edited with an equally heavy but sure hand: Puree of Split Pea, Roast Chicken with Pan Gravy, Beef Tenderloin with Wild Mushrooms, Gnocchi with Herbs and Butter. Each has an unobtrusive sidebar pointing out the relevant techniques (seeding tomatoes, melting chocolate). Even less familiar or more complex recipes - Roast Goose with Apple-Prune Sauce, Mole Poblano de Pollo, Steamed Cod with Gingered Hoisin Sauce - rely on sure-fire methods. Since pasta is a mainstay of home cooking, the carbonara-primavera-puttanesca trinity puts in an o bligatory appearance, along with various types of ravioli and lasagna. Desserts are mostly of the simple showstopper variety: Chocolate Mousse and several classic cooking-school soufflés. Look elsewhere, however, for game, sweetbreads, bread and pastry. Copiously photographed and filled with impressive-looking tables and charts (including 10 pages of weight/volume equivalents and temperature charts), this makes an ideal book for committed starting cooks, as well as culinary over-achievers who occasionally need reminding of the basics. (Oct.) (Publishers Weekly, July 7, 2003)

The huge textbooks from the Culinary Institute of America (with campuses in Hyde Park, NY. and Greystone, CA) are standard references for professionals; now the well-known school offers the culinary insights and experience of its staff to home cooks in a far more accessible work. An introductory section with dozens of step-by-step photographs covers equipment, basic pantry ingredients, and essential cooking techniques. Each of the recipe chapters opens with more specia1ized techniques related to their subject The 200 recipes, many of them shown in color photographs, include both classic and more contemporary dishes. While some of these are closer to comfort food than haute cuisine, the book ultimately emphasizes technique and more sophisticated recipes and will therefore appeal only to ambitious home cooks. (Library Journal, September 15, 2003)

This oversized, beautifully photographed collection offers not only recipes but also techniques, as well as details on equipment, tools and styles of cooking, all clearly explained in words and pictures. Many of the dishes you'll know or think you do — Puttanesca sauce, roast chicken with gravy, orange and fennel salad, a basic vinaigrette, a gratin of fresh berries — but some finer point on how to make something better is added in the terrific margin notes. (USA Today, December 4, 2003)


Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
Understanding the French culinary term mise en place, or "putting in place," is essential for the professional chef and home cook alike. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By Montana
Format:Hardcover
I have bought several cookbooks lately that aim to show one how to cook rather than simply list recipes. I will share with you my experiences.
This book is an excellent basic cookbook that explains many basic techniques and has many recipes of good, sophisticated recipes that won't require shopping in a specialty market. While there are some pictures of techniques, most are beautiful full-page colored pictures of finished recipes. Most, but not all, recipes have a picture of the finished product. It is excellent for the beginning cook that wants to produce food that is a step above the daily grind, but yet doesn't require outrageous demands skill, time, or one's grocer.
A similar book, Le Cordon Bleu's Complete Cooking Techniques, has many more techniques and many fewer recipes, with only very basic recipes. The pictures are primarily series of small size colored pictures that explain how a technique is done. In comparison to the one above, the techniques are more comprehensive and more complicated. I found this one much more useful than the above, since recipes themselves are so common.
Jacques Pepin's Complete Techniques is half the price of the two above books, presumably because of its black and white pictures and because it is a paperback. And, while the pictures are a serious drawback to this book, being a series of small black-and-white pictures for each technique, I absolutely adore the book because of the fabulous, imaginative recipes and the many imaginative techniques. If only the pictures had been larger and in color, this book would have been an excellent buy at three times the price. Although it is frustrating to have to deal with the pictures, in truth, most of the techniques are adequately explained by the pictures.
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Format:Hardcover
'Cooking at Home with The Culinary Institute of America' aims to arm the amateur cook with many of the tools of the professional and communicate the things which inspire a professional chef and set them apart from the amateur. The book comes to us with the authority of the foremost culinary school in the country and the aura of being a textbook with which it may seem to be sacrilege to take issue. This book does many very good things, but in popularizing it's subject, it does loose some depth and credibility.
The book does several very good things that almost entirely outweigh its few blemishes.
The first valuable lesson from this book is its characterization of the way students of professional cooking come to think about their vocation and its materials. In this way, the book can make you a more successful cook by adapting professional methods. The heart of the matter is to 'learn to think critically about cooking' and 'learn how to look at, touch, smell, and taste a dish to judge whether it is coming together'. A professional cook knows how to rescue a recipe when a step fails or an ingredient is unavailable. They know what Alton Brown calls the map of culinary facts and techniques, which surround recipes, and explains how they work. That is not to say that this book deals with culinary science a la Shirley Corriher. The terms 'acid' and 'gluten' don't even appear in the index.
The second valuable type of lesson in this book is the descriptions of general techniques and the explanations for how they work. An example is in the technique for preparing stocks where the book explains that flavors are extracted from vegetables within an hour after adding them to the simmering stock water.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Cooking class in a book Dec 14 2003
Format:Hardcover
Lavishly and instructively illustrated, this teaching book presents, in words and pictures, step-by-step instructions for everything from making spice sachets and pureeing soups to carving a roasted chicken and filleting a fish. It even shows various ways of cutting vegetables, preparing garlic, cleaning leeks and mushrooms.
A thorough primer, it starts with a discussion of tools, techniques and pantry ingredients, advocates an organized mindset, and proceeds in the same patient, simple manner through each course, discussing market choices and preparation, many illustrated. Easy-to-follow recipes build technique and repertoire, from Onion Soup Gratinee and Thai Hot and Sour Soup to Southern Fried Chicken, Roast Goose with Pan Gravy, Grilled Lamb with Mango Chutney and Beef Tenderloin with Mushrooms.
There are stir-fries, curries and classic continental and American dishes, all with painstaking directions. Side notes offer tips and direct the cook to basic cooking instructions elsewhere in the book. A masterful, handsome, endlessly useful and encouraging book for the beginner.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A really great cooking resource. Oct. 21 2003
Format:Hardcover
I love the way this book has sections in the beginning of each chapter with such basics as boning a chicken or making rich pan gravy. I made the Beef Tenderloin with Wild Mushrooms twice and all I can say is WOW!! My family loved it and the leftovers were gone in a day. My next venture is Cream of Broccoli Soup which sounds really yummy. I highly recommend this book for anyone who wants to make great meals without having to search all over for strange ingredients. Your grocery store should have anything you need.
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