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French Laundry Cookbook

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pat hammond Jul 24, 2000 03:25 PM

I saw this newish cookbook for the first time in my local library and read the whole thing over the weekend. It's expensive but I think I'll buy it just the same. Very beautiful photographs, well written recipes, and interesting vignettes about the artisan purveyors he uses from around the country. pat

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    rjka RE: pat hammond Jul 24, 2000 04:31 PM

    I read at least one review of this book that suggested that the recipes were pretty impractical for home use though.

    6 Replies
    1. re: rjka
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      pat hammond RE: rjka Jul 24, 2000 05:01 PM

      I'm sure that's partly true. But there are lots of things that a fairly competent home cook could manage. A whole meal might be daunting but a course or two would be manageble. It's a feast for the eyes, if not the tummy, anyway. p.

      1. re: pat hammond
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        Heidi RE: pat hammond Jul 24, 2000 10:26 PM

        I love this book. Yes, many of the recipes as presented are daunting for the home cook, but if you dissasemble many of the pieces and parts there are many viable selections. Just last Monday for a special home celebration I made the little yukon gold blini which were FABULOUS and really pretty easy.I didn't happen to have a tamis on hand so I used a ricer which worked for me. Served 'em up with some creme fraiche and caviar. I have also indulged in the pickled oysters with the finely shredded cucumber and not only was that a breeze to prepare (if you have someone else do your shucking!), but can be made well ahead of time. Compared to a Charlie Trotter "cookbook" this is not only a beauty of a book with wonderful and interesting text but is actually quite usable at home with a little bit of prior cooking knowledge

        1. re: Heidi
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          pat RE: Heidi Jul 25, 2000 09:49 AM

          Try the jellies. They look jewels and taste wonderful. I'm dying to find some yuzu juice. The concord grape is what I did. You have to use real apple pectin but they turned out very well. pat

          1. re: pat
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            Heidi RE: pat Jul 25, 2000 04:38 PM

            I've wanted to make the jellies for my Dad, he loves that Turkish Delight type of candy and I'm glad you found them delicious. If you liked the stories and writing in The French Laundry Cookbook, you might want to read the new book by Michael Ruhlman (author of The French Laundry with Thomas Keller) called Soul Of A Chef. It's divided into three sections, the first captures the trials of students from the Culinary attempting to pass their tests, the second on Chef/owner Michael Symon of Cleveland's Lola Bistro, and third on Thomas Keller. Another well-written behind-the-scenes book done on a different level then Kitchen Confidential. Not as gritty but equally engaging.

            1. re: Heidi
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              pat hammond RE: Heidi Jul 25, 2000 04:46 PM

              Thanks very much for the recommendation. I read ALL the time. When I told my librarian I was moving she said, "There goes my circulation". I'll see if they have it. I rarely buy books for myself because I'd be in the poor house. pat

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                Anthony Bourdain RE: pat hammond Jul 27, 2000 07:49 AM

                Ruhlman's SOUL OF A CHEF is wonderful.Could NOT put the thing down.

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