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Prune Hardcover – Nov 4 2014
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“Fresh, fascinating . . . entirely pleasurable . . . Since 1999, when the chef Gabrielle Hamilton put Triscuits and canned sardines on the first menu of her East Village bistro, Prune, she has nonchalantly broken countless rules of the food world. The rule that a successful restaurant must breed an empire. The rule that chefs who happen to be women should unconditionally support one another. The rule that great chefs don’t make great writers (with her memoir, Blood, Bones & Butter). And now, the rule that restaurant food has to be simplified and prettied up for home cooks in order to produce a useful, irresistible cookbook. . . . [Prune] is the closest thing to the bulging loose-leaf binder, stuck in a corner of almost every restaurant kitchen, ever to be printed and bound between cloth covers. (These happen to be a beautiful deep, dark magenta.)”—The New York Times
“One of the most brilliantly minimalist cookbooks in recent memory . . . at once conveys the thrill of restaurant cooking and the wisdom of the author, while making for a charged reading experience.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
About the Author
Gabrielle Hamilton is the chef/owner of Prune restaurant in New York’s East Village and the author of the New York Times bestselling memoir Blood, Bones & Butter: The Inadvertent Education of a Reluctant Chef. She received an MFA in fiction writing from the University of Michigan, and her work has appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times, GQ, Bon Appétit, Saveur, House Beautiful, and Food & Wine. She has also authored the 8-week Chef column in The New York Times, and her work has been anthologized in eight volumes of Best Food Writing. She has appeared on The Martha Stewart Show and the Food Network, among other TV and she has won a James Beard Foundation Award for Best Chef NYC. She currently lives in Manhattan with her two sons.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Hamilton provides neither an introduction to explain her approach nor headnotes to contextualize any dish. Somewhat maddeningly, she even eschews an index. Her recipes use industry jargon and take for granted a moderate degree of kitchen knowledge and skill. She certainly won't remind you to preheat the oven and she often throws in condiments or ingredients for serving in the instructions that don't appear in the ingredient list. But, if you read and prepare accordingly, the book can deliver exciting food by way of clever design. Recipes include Canned Sardines with Triscuits, Dijon Mustard and Cornichons; Shaved Celery, Fennel, and Radish Salad with Buttered Valedeon Toasts; and Mackerel Escabeche, Sliced Sweet Capicola Buttered Rye Cracker, and Celery Leaves.
The pages of the book resemble those of a wrinkled, food-stained kitchen notebook, complete with instructions for multiplying portions for service and hand-scrawled messages clarifying the imperative state of ingredients: "Fresh. Seriously. Pay attention. I have seen some wilted crap come out of this kitchen." Apparently, Hamilton pulled the handwritten notes from her real notebooks, a fact which emphasizes her candid, uncompromising voice. Though the voice doesn't always sound rosy, it certainly sounds honest: "I know this one is a bitch to prep," she writes of gazpacho. "Sorry."