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Death by Chocolate: The Last Word on a Consuming Passion [Hardcover]

Marcel Desaulniers
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)

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Book Description

May 15 1993
These recipes for seductive chocolate cakes, ice creams, and sauces, mouthwatering cookies, brownies, and truffles make all others pale by comparison. At the Trellis Restaurant in Colonial Williamsburg, Desaulniers has created extraordinary desserts such as Chocolate Temptation, and Death by Chocolate, an incredibly delicious cake, the ingredients of which are now revealed. 75 color illustrations.

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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Chocophiles will sigh in anticipation of glimpsing the dreamy dark desserts pictured in this sleekly illustrated work. Captured in shades of cocoa chiaroscuro to deep espresso are easy-to-make standards such as chocolate pots de creme and chocolate mousse. But the ultimate pleasure of chocolate for chef Desaulniers ( The Trellis Cookbook ) lies in the layering of flavors. The richest, most decadent desserts involve melding flavors of hazelnut, pistachio, pecans, espresso, raspberry, rum, brandy and other ingredients--even humble peanut butter--with chocolate. Chapters are organized by degree of obsession, from "Singular Sensations" and "Simply Chocolate" to the final chapter, "Chocolate Dementia." Yet one doesn't have to be crazed to tackle these recipes. Desaulniers shows, in simple steps (right down to the equipment list), how to murder one's diet with a dose of "Chocolate Demise," "Chocolate Devastation" or "Double Mocha Madness." Clear instructions, exquisite color photographs, the author's refreshing sense of humor and his gentility in acknowledging contributions from other pastry chefs combine to elevate this cookbook over many others specializing in chocolate.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

About the Author

Marcel Desaulniers, executive chef and co-owner of the Trellis Restaurant, has been named in Food and Wine's Honor Roll of Chefs and in Cooks magazine's Who's Who of Cooking; in 1988 he became the first chef from the South to be honored by the James Beard Foundation as a Great American Chef; he has been inducted into the American Academy of Chefs, the Honor Society of the American Culinary Federation; and he is on the Board of Trustees of the Culinary Institute of America. In addition, the Trellis Restaurant has won Restaurants & Institutions magazine's prestigious Ivy Award. Marcel Desaulniers is also the author of The Trellis Cookbook, about which Mimi Sheraton in Time magazine wrote, "Unlike most recipes from restaurant chefs, these can be managed by mere mortals with only two hands. A treasury of new American fare." --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Did Marcel Make a Deal with the Devil? May 20 2004
Format:Hardcover
Given the sumptuousness of the desserts found in this cookbook, the photo of slim, trim author Marcel Desaulniers found on the back cover flap simply astounds. What's that old saying? Never trust a skinny chef? Well Marcel must have diabolical connections, because after trying this cookbook I trust him completely when it comes to the kitchen!
When I first bought this cookbook I was in a lamentable phase where chocolate just seemed to be "too much" if it wasn't tempered with other flavors. Despite that I found much to love in this cookbook: Sliced Blood Oranges with White Chocolate Sauce and Caramel Banana Chocolate Chip Ice Cream are fabulous. Fresh Berry Tulip with White Chocolate "Ice Cream" is spectacular, strewn with strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries. Chilled Orange Cappuccino Cream with Grated Chocolate could melt you straight into a puddle. No matter what your dessert fetish, you'll find something for it here.
Each recipe comes with a delectable photo that will leave you reeling with choices. Do we make the Dark Chocolate and Pumpkin Cheesecake this weekend? Or the Tipsy Chocolate Pecan Crunch Ice Cream? We'd make both if it weren't for the fact that these are *not* light dishes by any stretch of the imagination.
At first the recipes may look daunting. Don't let this worry you, though. While some of these recipes are indeed complex, many of them are simple. And most of the long pages of directions are a result of the author's wish to detail every step with precision so that you *don't* get too confused or overwhelmed. Few of the recipes call for unusual ingredients (the blood orange recipe is one of them), and any equipment from the lists that you don't have you can probably substitute for (although it really helps to have a stand mixer).
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5.0 out of 5 stars extraordinary Dec 11 2003
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
The pulsing beat of chocolate decadence continues. Although the new edition features only 4 additional recipes, these additions are chocolate masterpieces. If you are like me and own the first edition, it is probably in shameless condition due to excessive usage. So I suggest that you add this to your collection.
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4.0 out of 5 stars As good as it looks July 7 2003
Format:Hardcover
I bought this book six years ago, and it hasn't failed me yet. (In fact, when I visited the US, I put Williamsburg on my itinerary just so I could eat some of Marcel's creations in his own restaurant!) The white chocolate and pistachio buttercream chocolate cake is a crowd-pleaser every time (and worth the three days it takes me to make it).
Yes, the recipes are time-consuming. Being someone from the metric majority of the world, I find the metric conversions are a bit silly (they are done better in the later books). Some of the instructions are overly pedantic - I don't have the same kitchen equipment so instructions like 'beat for 3 minutes' don't always work. But with a bit of commonsense you can work things out. The other comment I'd make is that the suggested number of serves are extraordinarily generous: whenever the book recommends 12 serves, I know I'll get 24.
I own a couple of Marcel's other books - but this is by far the best. As a friend of mine said after looking at the book: 'I want to lick the pages . . .'
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5.0 out of 5 stars Without a doubt, a wonderful book Jan. 13 2003
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
I have had this cookbook for a few years now, and the edges are tattered, the pages bent, and smudges of flour and chocolate throughout.
One of the reasons this book is so great is that in addition to having solid recipes, Desaulniers does an excellent job of explaining how to make each dessert, as well as how to cope if your kitchen is not equipped with some of the more extravagant baking utensils. This is a problem that many cookbooks fail to address, but not this one.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Lots of work! BIG PAYOFFS! Sept. 3 2002
Format:Hardcover
I love this book. I first got it in college and have been steadily expanding the recipes I'm brave enough to try as the years go by.
These recipes are complex, to say the least. This is All-Day cooking here, and no fooling. But, the ingredients are all readily available. This is a big plus for me. Nothing annoys me about a cookbook more than impossible to find, obscure ingredients. Unlike another reviewer, I didn't notice the photograph quality. My stuff *never* looks like the pictures, but that's just fine by me. It's the taste that ultimately counts.
But if you're like me, and really *love* being able to have an excuse to spend all day in the kitchen, this is a great book. The recipes make fabulous, impressive desserts. My favorite, by far, is the Dark Chocolate and Pumpkin Cheesecake, which has replaced pumpkin pie on the Thanksgiving dessert roster in my house. I also really love the caramel banana chocolate chip ice cream, the white chocolate ice cream, and I have even dared to make the chocolate wedlock, even though it took me two days. It was worth it. Every last second.
If you love cooking, and love chocloate-- this is for you.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Worth the Greatest Sacrifice Nov. 27 2001
Format:Hardcover
I'm the first to admit that Desaulniers is a master of marketing. This becomes obvious if you visit his restaurant. And the series of cookbooks on the Death By theme are an example of taking the ball and running...and running... . But the truth is, these books are great, especially the first two, Death By Chocolate and Deserts to Die for.
These aren't simple recipes; they require patience, attention to detail, and most of all time. But I've never had commitment so rewarded. They almost always turn out just right. And when they're a little off, no one notices or cares. I've no professional training, and I haven't been cooking all of my life. But these recipes have been so popular that I've actually made cakes for a co-worker's Uncle's birthday party, a baby shower and two wedding showers - including my own (well, my wife's actually). Every family holiday I get requests. I would test the recipes and bring the results into work, and my team was always looking for more. And people rave and rave.
Over and over again, people tell me that I should do this professionally. But it isn't really me; it's these wonderful books. If you care enough about the end product and the oohs and ahs to invest lots of time and attention - these recipes pay off.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Great looking food
Sometimes (about once or twice a decade), I decide to have the kind of dinner party where the food is Really Impressive. Read more
Published on Oct. 16 2001 by Marcy L. Thompson
5.0 out of 5 stars Hand over all the chocolate & No One will Get Hurt!
The king of gnache gives us an outstanding chocolate collection. Here are recipes which are tested and tried and made with ingredients easily obtainable for the home cook. Read more
Published on Feb. 5 2001 by rodboomboom
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow!
This is a fantastic book. Filled with recipes that can almost make one feel full simply to read them...so rich, so chocolatey... Read more
Published on Dec 17 2000 by David J. Huber
5.0 out of 5 stars A great alternative if you can't go to the Trellis
Lucky me, I'm an hour away from Marcel's restaurant in Williamsburg, so I've had the pleasure of enjoying some of the delicious treats in this book. Read more
Published on Nov. 30 2000 by "kathrynlively"
5.0 out of 5 stars Graduated difficulty of recipes a big plus
I really liked that this book was broken up into sections that went from really easy to really, really hard, so you could pick a section and start with something you were... Read more
Published on Oct. 30 2000 by Liralen Li
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my favorite cookbooks
While many of the recipes are not trivial in terms of prep time and complexity, they are well worth the effort, especially if you have a special event you are preparing for. Read more
Published on July 6 2000
4.0 out of 5 stars Decadent and time-consuming
Cookbooks simply don't get more luscious, heavenly, or pompous than this one. The simplest recipes in this book take hours to make: the more complicated are recommended to take... Read more
Published on May 2 2000 by Scott R
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