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New Making Of A Cook [Hardcover]

Madeline Kamman
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Nov. 5 1997
The Making of a Cook became an instant classic upon its publication in 1971. Since then much has changed in the way America cooks and The New Making of a Cook meets these changes head-on. This fully revised edition teaches every technique used in todays homes and professional kitchens, from julienning vegetables to roasting meats to steaming fish to baking bread. With years of experience teaching Americas top chefs how to cook, Madeleine knows what works and why.

Today's cooking is much more heart-healthy, and The New Making of a Cook is filled with low-fat cooking techniques, along with hundreds of recipes that extract maximum flavor from the least required amount of fat (though culinary indulgences still remain). In addition to techniques and recipes, The New Making of a Cook tells the important whys of cooking-why meats brown in the pan; why egg whites stiffen when they are beaten.

The New Making of a Cook is an extraordinary and indispensable reference from an extraordinary teacher. Completely rewritten for todays cook, it will become a classic all over again.


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From Amazon

Professional cooking schools have used Madeleine Kamman's The Making of a Cook since it first appeared in 1971. She has now revised it to reflect newer techniques, the availability of a wider range of ingredients, and the recent American aversion to fat. She suggests eating fats in moderation, and includes recipes for cholesterol-free gingerbread and more. Fundamentally, Kamman teaches classic French technique as applied to American ingredients. For example, she carefully explains how to make a classic espagnole sauce as chefs have made it for centuries and also provides, as an alternative, a brown stock made in the microwave.

A good chef must understand food chemistry; any good cook is fascinated by the hows and whys of the kitchen. Kamman gives the information that a professional requires, with clarity anyone can understand.

The main drawback to The New Making of a Cook is that its size makes it awkward to have in the kitchen, though you will want it handy for recipes such as Stuffed Pork Butt with Apples and Pistachios; the Pilgouri at Delphi, a bulgur pilaf studded with Feta cheese; Chocolate Puff Pastry; and Kamman's brilliant quartets of recipes for vegetable stir-frys and steamed chicken breasts.

From Library Journal

Although this massive book began as a revision of Kamman's classic The Making of a Cook (1971), it's really an entirely new work; the text has been rewritten and greatly expanded, and few of the recipes are the same. The organization is similar, based generally on techniques and "building blocks" rather than courses of a meal (not surprisingly, the chapter titled "The True Way to That Man's Heart" has been dropped). While classic French dishes are still important, there are many lighter recipes, and Kamman, aware of the realities of the modern work week, incorporates time-saving suggestions and variations into more complicated recipes. Kamman's masterwork contains an incredible amount of information not only on techniques and ingredients but also on food science, cultural and culinary history, and myriad other topics. Although the book's size may seem intimidating, home cooks will find many creative everyday recipes here, and more ambitious cooks will turn to it for both inspiration and reference. Highly recommended.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Terrific but... Feb. 17 2004
By D. Wolf
Format:Hardcover
Ms Kamman's book is an exhaustive tome to be sure. She covers nearly every aspect of European cooking and a few forays into other cuisines as well. You also have to appreciate the way her personality comes through. It's not hard to hear her voice guiding you in the kitchen.
The recipes are generally clear and the ones I've tested work well.
So why only 4 stars? Mainly it is the indexing. It is sometimes hard to navigate the book to find what you want. Unlike the Joy of Cooking which seems designed to be an immediate reference work, Making of a Cook takes more work to find what you're looking for.
Also, there are some surprising ommissions for a book intended primarily for an American readership. There's virtually nothing on roasting a turkey other than one somewhat odd recipe, and some commentary following the discussion of roasting a chicken. There's considerable difference between roasting a 4 lb. bird and a 14 lb. one.
But, the good stuff is definitely worth the investment of time. The explanations of why certain techniques matter and the recipes themselves make this a must have.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The one cookbook to have. July 14 1998
Format:Hardcover
This is the best transatlantic summary of French cooking since Julia Child's _Mastering the Art of French Cooking_. It goes a step beyond that book (and those like it) by providing exhaustive technical and historical information on the recipes and products, and the author's distinct opinions on cooking and eating. The new edition differs from the first one in many respects, including the elimination of pates (terrines only in this one) and the recipe for demi-glace (the real thing, not the fake stuff found in restaurants these days). She also adds new recipes to address contemporary tastes for Asian and Latin American flavors, but the core is still French. The cover depicts Kamman whisking a generous amount of butter (hooray!) into a sauce. Great reading too, and no glossy pics.
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5.0 out of 5 stars are you a little weird? March 31 2000
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
Your spouse is gone for the weekend with your children. How do you spend your time? If it is drinking a little too much wine and looking through cookbooks, this is the book for you. Kamman is a little self important, but she really loves to cook. Her love of food is infectuous and inspiring. I was bored with following cookbooks that telll you how to do things (any idiot can follow instructions). Kamman tells you WHY you need do things. I was looking for a book that would take me to the "next step" of cooking, and this is it. This book goes into a little too much detail, even for me. But I love it. I would rather have the information and not need it, than need the information and not have it. Please take notice that I am a little weird.
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5.0 out of 5 stars One of the Finest! Feb. 5 2000
Format:Hardcover
Perhaps the best cooking guide I have read! The wealth of information on technique and cooking science is presented in such a manner that the book is easily readable cover-to-cover. Madeleine Kamman certainly has given as much importance to writing this volume as she gives to her cooking and in doing so, has produced an extraordinary teaching source. She introduces concepts of sauces by presenting a very insightful history of saucemaking citing such masters as Escoffier and Careme. The bibliography itself is worth a great deal as it presents numerous sources which can be used for further study. This is definitely a required book for anyone who is serious about cooking!
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By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
Recall how your college English teacher used to assign to you a incredibly thick, obtuse novel to read in a week?
Mme Kamnan's book is, objectively, quite hefty. I started Chapter 1 with some reservation but 100 pages later, I looked up and it was way past my bedtime. Two days later, I finished the last page.
This book is enchanting, informative, funny, insightful and, for the most part, scientifically accurate. I would unhesitatingly recommend it to anyone interested in the history, science or art of cooking. It's rather much like spending a long afternoon with a French housewife in Provence.
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5.0 out of 5 stars It's da bomb! Sept. 29 1999
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
If you only want to buy one cookbook, you must buy this one. It's got absolutely everything you could ever want to know about cooking. The really great thing is that it goes from very simple to amazingly complex, so you don't necessarily have to jump straight into making a veloute sauce from scratch right away. You can sort of adjust for complexity. Also, I really like the wine recommendations that come alongside most of the recipes. They're dead on.
It's a great book for the money. Just try comparing it to any of the other really exhaustive cookbooks out there.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great cookbook!!! Feb. 28 1998
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
This cookbook is a complete guide to cooking. Everything is explained well without being condescending. In addition, there are interesting anecdotes added with each technique description. Not only does this book describe how to do things, it describes why (this is only useful to those of us who hate mysticism in cooking). It describes things like why egg whites will be stiffer if whipped in a copper bowl. Very cool book.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent
Better then nearly most of the classes I have taken.
Published on Feb. 10 2003 by Kasper Gutman
5.0 out of 5 stars The Making of A Cook
This is the best cooking resource I have used in the 25 years I have been cooking. For New Years I made Chateaubriand for six for the first time ever, and it was perfect. Read more
Published on Aug. 24 2000 by Bryan Jackson
2.0 out of 5 stars biblical
Very imposing treatise on life! Everything and more that I hoped to ever learn. I just wish I had ten days to read the whole thing. Read more
Published on May 15 2000 by greg leaf
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the very best
This is an essential book if you are a well-disciplined cook who loves to read, and to understand the hows & whys of cooking. It's a hefty book to say the least. Read more
Published on June 29 1999
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful reference! I refer to it several times a week!
This invaluable reference spends most of it's time on the end table beside my recliner so I can read a page or two between commercials! Read more
Published on June 19 1999
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfection
This is simply the perfect book for any serious amateur or starting professional chef. This hefty volume may look imposing at first, but I promise you that it's well worth every... Read more
Published on May 1 1999 by bishkear@hotmail.com
5.0 out of 5 stars An essential cookbook
A true 'Cooking Book' (as opposed to a collection of recipes), this book has changed the way I cook. Read more
Published on June 4 1998
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