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Hardcover Chez Panisse Cooking Book

ISBN: 0394569709

ISBN13: 9780394569703

Chez Panisse Cooking

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Format: Hardcover

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Book Overview

"Extraordinary," "poetic," and "inspired" are only a few words that have been used to describe the food at Chez Panisse. Since the first meal served there in 1971, Alice Waters's Berkeley, California,... This description may be from another edition of this product.

Customer Reviews

3 ratings

A classix

This is a great cookbook. There's a reason Chez Panisse is famous and this cookbook proves it.

Great foodie read for understanding cooking and ingredients

`Chez Panisse Cooking' by Paul Bertolli, with Alice Waters, is a reminder of the kinds of things we miss in the downpour of fast cooking and low carb cooking books with which we have been showered in the last few years. Like most celebrity cookbooks, this can be seen as a very chatty book, with lots of headnotes and essays on various subjects such as wild mushrooms and risotto techniques. So, if all you want is a simple statement of recipes, you may be much happier with a Rachael Ray book or `1000 Italian Recipes' by Michele Scicolone, although even Scicolone's very heavily recipe oriented book has its share of commentary and notes on regional origins. Paul Bertolli is Alice Waters' second major chef at Chez Panisse, after Jeremiah Tower went off to create Stars and claim ownership of the invention of `California Cuisine'. While Tower (and Waters) are both heavily influenced by leading English writer on French cuisine, Richard Olney, Bertolli's center is clearly in Italy, with several homages to Provence and other French influences. One important foodie note is that Bertolli cites the Pellegrino Artusi's 100 year old `L'Arte di mangiar bene' (`Art of Eating Well'). I think this is notable because I have taken a quick look at a recent translation of this work and was not very impressed with the material. It may have been a very good book 100 years ago, but I did not immediately see how it stood up to the great wealth of Italian cuisine books we have today in English. But what do I know. I obviously must go back and reconsider my opinion. What Bertolli attends to better than practically every other cookbook author I can think of (except for the very high-end restaurant chefs such as Thomas Keller and Rick Tramonto) is taste and the nature of his ingredients. In giving instructions for a broccoli dish, I can think of very few other chefs who would take the care to suggest that you buy older broccoli for the long braise, as this will stand up better to the heat over a longer time. This is not to say that Bertolli goes as far into essays on major ingredients in the style of his later, excellent `Cooking By Hand' book. This later book goes so far as to leave the world of cookbooks and enter the world of culinary essays you typically find from John Thorne, with the difference that Bertolli is a professional cook and amateur writer, while Thorne is a professional writer and amateur cook. I did, however, find the essay on yeast bread baking to be as good as anything I have seen elsewhere for the length. Note that the reference to sources of materials is not in an appendix at the end of the book, but placed at the end of the relevant essay on technique. So, names and addresses of sources for bread flour and home flourmills can be found at the end of the essay on bread baking. This probably explains why Bertolli succeeds in committing two of the prime fallacies exposed in a recent `Good Eats' episode by Alton Brown. Bertolli rolls out the old chestnuts

the bible

This is the book that taught me how to cook. To appreciate this book, read the pages on roast chicken and risotto. There are many other cookery books out there that will tell you the components of the dish, but cannot describe the essence. I did not know food before I read this book. I would recommend reading this and Chez Panisse Vegetables. If you can only have 2 cookbooks, these are the two!
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