14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
- Published on Amazon.com
MERCI BEAUCOUP to all the reviewers and to the two magazine reviews that highly recommended this wonderful book!! I have been so enchanted with everything about it, albeit that being a Francophile hasn't hurt. It had been one of the recommendations from Amazon, and after being intrigued by a little peek into its content, the reviewers made my decision easy. Voila......how much fun it is!
It's not a large book, almost pocket size in fact. And it's not a recipe-only book either, though it has enough recipes within to add to the already interesting musings of the relationship between the French and chocolate.
Photographs of French life, French patisseries and chocolatiers, along with the written musings (both in French with most given their English translation) of those who have gone before, or who are here now, dot the chapters of this incredible guide to all that is worthy of French chocolate. And lest you not be particularly proficient in French, there are various pages of assistance with understanding French accent marks, and, adverbs of quantity (though, is there such an error as wanting too much chocolate?). There is also a lovely section within the end of the book that gives you an English translation of the French vocabulary of ingredients, expressions, verbs, and general chocolate terms. Recipe contributors, recipe ingredient resources (from all over the world) help to round out your veritable tour of the chocolate delights of France.
As you begin your perusing of this guide, you are given hotels, bistros, and other assorted places that serve various chocolate delights. An interesting aspect of these mentions, is that they include places other than France, that pay homage to chocolate, such a Switzerland and the creations made there, or Chicago, and its shops and schools devoted to the art of being a chocolatier, as well as San Francisco, New Orleans, Louisiana, Connecticut, and Tokyo to name a few.
The sections of this book are divided into:
History of France and Chocolate
The book also goes into how chocolate has tranferred itself into movies such as "Chocolate" starring Julia Ormand and Johnny Depp. Or how it has made its way into the fashion industry.........ever seen a chocolate dress?
A chocolate dress you say? Well, they may not give you the recipe for that, but they will give you the following jewels:
Chocolate Tartlet with Coffee Cream
Warm Chocolate Puddings with Pistachio Cream and Pears
Chocolate Croissant Pudding w/ Toffee Sauce, Strawberries, and Pecans
Chocolate Fondant w/ Orange Confit and Raspberry Sauce
Marquise au Chocolate
Chocolate Mousse Charlotte
Chocolate Red Wine Soup with Strawberries
Buchon Chocolate Tart
Warm Chocolate Cake with Vanilla
Chocolate Bing Cherry Cake
Mexican Chocoalte Truffle Torte
Chocolate Macaroon a l'Ancienne
Dipped Camembert and Chocolate Sandwich
Grandmother's Chocolate Mousse
Chocolate and Vanilla Madeleines
Chocolate Chip Madeleines
Monique's Chocolate Brique
Red Fruit, Chocolate and Vanilla Clafoutis
Lamb with Dark Chocolate Sauce
Bittersweet Chocolate Decadence
Warm Chocolate Cake w/ Chantilly Creme and Raspberry Sauce
Phyllo Cups w/ Chocolate Mousse, Raspberries, and Poached Pears
Miss Celle's Bananas Foster avec Chocolat
Chocolate Espresso Souffle
White Chocolate Bread Pudding w/ White Chocolate Kahlua Sauce
Chocolat Chaud w/ Creamy Melted Bars of Dark Chocolate
Chocolate French Toast
Pear and Chocolate Tart
Petits Pots au Chocolat
Creme Brulee au Chocolat
Pate a Choux
Couscous Sucre w/ Honey, Raisins, and Cacao
Creole Hot Chocolate
Banana and Chocolate Tart
I would also like to mention The "L'alliance Francaise" which is given quite a good mention in the "Let Them Eat Chocolate" section of this book. L'alliance Francaise is a organization that Francophiles can join that celebrates the exquisite culture of France by giving French language classes, tours, festival, cooking classes, etc. with chapters located all over the United States as well as other places in our world. This particular section was written by one of the instructors at the Alliance in Connecticut. For me, this information alone was worth the price of the book.
OK then............see what everyone was talking about? Wonderful, isn't it? As I said previously, this is not a recipe book of sorts, but a multifaceted journey into all that weaves itself into the affair of France and sinful, decadent, addictive chocolate.