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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 sauting 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.
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)
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. Read morePublished on April 2 2004 by Montana
Well organized, straight forward information about preparing everything from soup to nuts...literally. Read morePublished on Feb. 15 2004 by KnottyFella