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Feb 26, 2008 08:29 PM

Cookbook on techniques with photos

I'm looking for a cookbook that really focuses on techniques of cooking, but one that pertains to home cooking, with lots of good photos. Does anyone have particular book they really like?

A book I saw was Fundamentals of Classic Cuisine by FCI in B&N, which has gorgeous color photos and excellent step-by step. Has anyone here used the book?

I noticed that a lot of these books seemed to be based on French cusine, which I don't really cook. I was wondering if that matters really, or if the techniques they mention is easily transferred to other styles.


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  1. I don't have any recommendations for the type of cookbook you're looking for but was wondering if you thought about subscribing to cooking magazines? I subscribe to Cook's Illustrated and Every Day Food Magazine. Both publications have good photos with step by step instructions for cooking a wide variety of foods including techniques. I'm sure there are other good cooking magazines out there but these are the two I'm familiar with. Another suggestion is to ask someone who works in a store, such as Williams Sonoma or Sur La Table, for their cookbook recommendations. Good luck!

    1. Try Jacques Pepin's "Complete Techiniques," which is right up your alley.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Megiac

        Agree - great book on basic technique (French or not)

        1. re: Megiac

          The video series he has out based on the Techniques volumes is great

        2. Here are two that I think might fill the bill: What's a Cook to Do, An Illustrated Guid to 484 Essential Tips, Techniques and Tricks by James Peterson. Not too esoteric. Focuses on things like how to season a cast iron pan and make a good hamburger.

          Another one I have been tempted by and looks beautiful is Knife Skills Illustrated by Peter Hertzmann.

          Check them out on Amazon or at a good bookstore.

          1. I have the Jacque Pepin book and it's good. Very useful. I found at Half Price books at a substantial discount. So I would recommend checking there. I also subscribe to Cook's Illustrated podcasts on iTunes -- some of which are video podcasts demonstrating certain things -- braising comes to mind. And...last but not least. Both the Washington Post and New York Times have a cooking simply series (my name, not theirs) that highlights technique versus specific recipes. The NYT series includes video. The WashPo series is still rather new. But I use all of these as references. And if I find myself in a bind in the middle of a recipe -- google and you tube are my best friends.

            1. I agree with those who posted Complete Technique by Jacques Pepin. It covers everything- how to cut up a whole chicken, how to shuck oysters, make stock. The photos are all b/w but still very clear and informative.