- Paperback: 256 pages
- Publisher: Delmar Cengage Learning (25 Mar. 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1133282822
- ISBN-13: 978-1133282822
- Product Dimensions: 22.9 x 18.5 x 1.8 cm
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 300,497 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- See Complete Table of Contents
In the Kitchen with Le Cordon Bleu Paperback – 25 Mar 2013
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Front Matter. Contents. Forward/Introduction. SECTION I: APPETIZERS. Figs Stuffed with Goat's Cheese and Serrano Ham. Bruschetta with Mushroom and Fontina. Bruschetta with Macadamia Pesto, Roasted Red Pepper, and Feta. Bruschetta with Parma Ham, Stilton, and Sun-Dried Tomatoes. Tomatoes Stuffed with Fresh Fish Ceviche. Corn and Chicken Fritters. Puff Pastries with Leeks and Onion Relish. Shrimp and Daikon Rolls. Lobster, Mango, and Avocado with Citrus Vinaigrette. SECTION II: SMALL PLATES. Quail with Parmetier Potato Cakes and Orange Sauce. Lamb Brochettes. Spinach and Goat's Cheese Roulade. Quinoa Fritters with Tomato Sauce. SECTION III: SOUPS. Cream of Chicken Soup with Mushrooms and Truffles. Chicken and Citrus Soup with Tortillas. Pea and Broad Bean Cream Soup with Smoked Duck Crisps. Oyster and Artichoke Soup with Chive Oil and Pancetta Crisps. Cold Tomato Soup with Orange and Basil. SECTION IV: SALADS. Flaked Crab with Ginger Mayonnaise and Fresh Herb Salad. Shrimp, Mango, and Cashew Salad with Orange and Bitters Vinaigrette. SECTION V: MAIN COURSES. Salmon, Ginger, and Lime en Papillote. Salmon, Lemon Artichokes, and Grapes. John Dory Meuniere with Leeks, Tomatoes, and Olives. Roasted Halibut with Cumin and Star Anise Ratatouille and Fennel Salad. Cod with a Chorizo Crust and Parsley Coulis. Whiting Fritters with White Bean Salad and Pesto. Lobster Brochette with Garlic and Porcini Mushrooms. Filet Mignon of Pork with Leeks and Whole Grain Mustard Sauce. Chicken Supreme Stuffed with Shitake Mushrooms and Tarragon Sauce. Stuffed Chicken Breasts with Mango Salsa. Teriyaki Chicken. Thai Chicken. Chicken Korma, Kashmiri Style. Wasabi-Crusted Chicken Breasts with Herbed Rice Noodles. Duck Breasts with Honey Coriander Sauce. Confit Duck Leg with Red Wine Sauce. Rack of Lamb with Herb Crust. Veal Escalopes with Mint and Jerusalem Artichokes. Filet of Beef with Five Peppers and Puree of Celery Root. Spinach-Stuffed Cannelloni with Tomato Sauce. Crab Ravioli, Chicken, and Garlic Cream with Chervil Coulis. SECTION VI: SIDES. Barley Risotto. Polenta Cakes. Cassoulet-Style White Bean Ragout with Oven-Dried Tomato and Pancetta. Cream of Lentils. Ricotta Gnocchi. Asparagus with Soy and Wasabi. Red and Gold Beet Puree. Orange-Glazed Daikon Radish. Celery Root and Apple Gratin. Celery Root Mousseline with Beet Chips and Parsley. Creamy Puree of Green Peas with Smoked Bacon. Mixed Roasted Vegetables with Lemon and Saffron Vinaigrette. Porcini Mushroom Flan. Potato Millefeuille. Potato Mouselline. Spicy Fingerling Potato Puree. Turnip Puree with Lemon and Walnut Oil. SECTION VII: DESSERTS. Pistachio and Sour Cherry Cake. Creme Brulee with Coconut, Passion Fruit Sorbet, and Tea Lace Tuile Cookies. Creme Brulee with Pistachio, Caramelized Pears, and Chocolate Sorbet. Buttermilk Panne Cotta with Caramel Sauce. Rice Pudding with Pistachios and Caramel. Warm Chocolate Cake with Chili and Orange Sauce. Chocolate Cup with Coffee Mousse and Bourbon Zabaglione. Mandjari Chocolate Pie with Raspberry Sorbet. Pear and Almond Tart. Apple Mango Tart Tatin with Coconut Ice Cream. Chantilly Cream and Strawberry Eclair with Blackberry Coulis. Strawberry Vacherin with Thyme Creme Legere. Raspberry Soup with Citrus Soup and Sweet Spices. White Chocolate Ice Cream. Two Chocolate Marble Parfait. Iced Coffee Mousse. Lemon Meringue Domes. SECTION VIII: STOCKS. Chicken Stock. Fish Stock. Beef Stock. Veal Stock. Vegetable Stock. Court Stock. Glossary/Reference. Conversion Charts. Index.
About the Author
Founded in Paris in 1895, Le Cordon Bleu has trained generations of the world's best chefs in Gastronomy, Hospitality, and Management. Today, Le Cordon Bleu delivers its celebrated culinary arts education across the globe.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
For me, the issue is with French technique. It's hard to find fault with the methods and procedures, but it's really a question of how much one wishes to invest. I look at some of the recipes here and find myself wondering: "will it be worth the time and energy?"
I encountered the same thing with many of Thomas Keller's recipes (in the French Laundry, Ad Hoc at Home, and Bouchon). Being a subscriber to the notion of brevity as the soul of wit - and of good eats - I'm interested in a healthy balance between time spent and results obtained ... and persnicketiness can be tiresome. I'm not saying this to criticize those with a focus on precision and I do love going to restaurants where such detail is on display by professionals.
But I'm a home cook and only part-time foodie. Of course, there are some dishes that are approachable and make a lot of sense to me, such as the Kashmiri-Style Chicken Korma, Prawns with Avocado Cream, Beef Tenderloin with Five Peppers, Polenta Cakes, Creme Brulee, Potatoes au Gratin, and the aforementioned Thai Kabobs.
Look and feel of the book is good, but nothing special. Paperback is not the way to go here, in my opinion. I would also have preferred to see the photography devoted to step-by-step breakdowns of the techniques, rather than chefs doing what chefs do. This is after all a book of recipes, so it seems to me the focus should stay on the food.
Overall, I'd say this is an interesting addition to the collection, but not essential. I've honestly had more luck with my Cook's Illustrated Cookbook. That said, it really depends on the type of cook you are and how much time you're comfortable investing. I think there are some very good recipes to be found here.
I would expect a cookbook from the most famous cooking school in the world to be worthy of the vaunted name so prominently attached to the book. Beautifully bound, much like my beloved Larousse Gastronomique: The World's Greatest Culinary Encyclopedia, Completely Revised and Updated (though mine is much older than this.) Full of clear recipes, well laid out such as those their most famous graduate put forth in Mastering the Art of French Cooking, 50th Anniversary Edition (and all of her subsequent work.) Perhaps most of all, I would expect a book that states right on the cover "100 special recipes for the home cook from the world's most famous cooking school" to provide recipes for the average HOME cook.
Tragically, In the Kitchen with Le Cordon Bleu is none of those things. Instead of being beautifully bound in the manner that truly special recipes from the world's most famous cooking school deserve, this is of about the same quality as your run-of-the-mill supermarket tabloid. Cheap paper, cheap printing,a cover that arrived damaged and improperly cut, ingredients listed in italic type so small (and gray, not black) that Grandma's reading glasses need reading glasses to read them!
I don't know what sort of homes the chefs who wrote this are familiar with, but I don't know many home cooks who can afford Kobe Wagyu Beef Rib-Eye Steaks for a steak dinner - just $229 + $9.95 shipping. Those I do know who can afford Wagyu beef can also afford a private chef to cook it. Or perhaps the Summer Black French Truffles - Brushed First Choice - 1 x 1.00 oz . . you'll need two of these to garnish the Cream of Chicken Soup . . at a cost of only $25 per ounce. The list of expensive ingredients only rarely (if ever) seen by most home cooks goes on and on - duck breasts, lobsters, rack of lamb. Preparations are fussy and time consuming, often comprising several different items. (French home cooks must have FAR more time to cook than the average American housewife, let me tell you!) Yes, there are some things that are affordable, but even those things are fussy. When I want to eat this kind of fussy food, I want a waiter and a bottle of wine to go with it!
The one time saving tip that they give - to buy precooked lobster at the market - is one that Grandma, who cut her teeth on Maine lobster straight from the ocean, must caution you strongly against unless you have the kind of fishmonger where you pick out the still-kicking lobster that you want and he cooks it in front of your eyes. Otherwise you are likely to get a lobster that died in the tank and so was cooked off to not be wasted. (Note - you will find Chef's Tips scattered throughout the text. Those are en point, though oddly X'd out.) Hmmmm . ..
Grandma's $0.02 - In the Kitchen with Le Cordon Bleu is almost schizophrenic, the single most disjointed book Grandma has ever come across, full of overly pretentious recipes far more suitable to a big beautiful coffee table book like The French Laundry Cookbook than the cramped, cheaply done paperback Le Cordon Bleu presents.
So badly done that even the most ardent and pretentious foodie on the planet would be ashamed to display it.
Is there a lovely picture of each recipe so one can follow along and see the result? Nope, but there are 38, that's right, I counted, 38 filler pages of black and white photos of hands and chefs and a pile of pans and knobs on the stove. Are these pictures showing a technique perhaps? Nope, they are self indulgent "artistic pictures" that really don't belong in a cheaply made paperback. Of course, having these pictures limits the space for pictures of the actual recipes.
About the recipes. well.. there's a hundred of them. Parmentier of duck confit takes three days to make. Yet this book says it's for the home cook. Then there are simple recipes like cold tomato soup, that are almost too simple. This book is suffering an identity crisis. Does it want to be a high end artsy coffee table book, or a book to be used over and over? For someone looking for simple recipes to feed their family maybe 1/3 of the recipes in the book would be accessible or appropriate.
The Chicken Teriyaki for example, simple and affordable. The side dishes are a little more reasonable also. However, many mashed dishes make the sides sort of the same over and over. Even something seemingly simple like the sauteed chicken calls for veal stock. I don't have veal stock on hand, nor do I have the mad money to make stock from veal! The beef tenderloin starts out expensive, then calls for cognac. Remember this is for the home cook? Cream of chicken soup- truffles. It must be nice to be so out of touch in today's economy to think those of us at home could afford these recipes.
Even the most simple seeming recipe like glazed daikon radish calls for duck stock, the grilled veggies call for saffron!
Speaking of veal stock, the Red Snapper Meuniere calls for veal stock, with fish! why not a fish fumet made from the bones and head? Or just clam juice? It would make more sense.
For someone looking for high end recipes with truffles, duck, or Creme Brulee with coconut, Passion fruit sorbet and tea lace tuiles, they can use the rest of the book, but is that really the home cook? And yes, some home cooks do make intricate meals but the book appears to be marketed to the home cook who doesn't. For someone who wants a bunch of black and white pictures of hairy arms tossing flour on a board they can have 38 of those. For someone who is visual and wants pictures of recipes, maybe half.
The recipe for Wagyu rib stead with red wine shallot compote and maitake mushroom tempura apparently goes well with the potato puree with truffles. Doing a quick web search tells me I would be spending from 3-450 dollars on my rib steaks, plus my truffles for the potatoes. And yet the cover (the one that isn't cut flush to the book) assures me this is 100 recipes for the home cook.
There is a really nice glossary (which gained it a star) that explains a lot of terms like Abaisser.
I just can't see who this book would appeal to. Someone who is cooking with wagyu beef is going to want this cheaply produced paperback, someone who wants the artistic pictures would probably want a coffee table book, and someone believing this is for the home cook may not want incredibly complex four and five step recipes requiring ingredients that equal a month's grocery budget.
The book is well illustrated, although not all dishes are featured. Many recipes feature "Chef's Tip" providing tips on preparation. Most categories feature four to five plates/recipes. The Sides and Deserts categories feature more than a dozen each.
My only complaint is that that the text is only available in paperback. I prefer hardback for durability and ease of use, particularly for a cookbook.
Some sample recipes:
Corn and Chicken Fritters with Poblano Cream Sauce;
Lobster, Mango and Avocado with Citrus Vinaigrette
Quinoa Croquettes with Tomato Sauce
Lobster Brochette with Porcini Mushrooms and Garlic Butter
Cream of Chicken Soup with Mushrooms and Truffles
Oyster and Artichoke Soup with Olive Oil and Pancetta Crisps
Flaked Crab with Ginger Mayonaise and Herb Salad
Salmon with Lemon Artichoke and Grapes
Chicken and Duck
Chicken Stuffed with Shitake Duxelles and Tarragon Sauce
Wasabi Crusted Chicken Breast with Herbed Rice Noodles
Lamb, Beef and Veal
Beef Tenderloin with Five Peppers
Beef Daube Provencale Style
Pork and Game
Pork Filet Mignon with Leeks and Whole Grain
Venison Braised in Red Wine
Pasta and Vegetarian
Spinach Stuffed Cannelloni with Tomato Sauce
Crab Ravioli with Garlic Cream and Chervil Sauce
Cream of Lentils
Pear and Almond Tart
Chilled Raspberry Soup
Strawberry Eclairs with Blackberry Coulis and Chantilly Cream
Stocks, Cooking Liquids and Pastes
As for the recipes themselves, they run the gamut from classical French (parmentier of duck confit, beef daube, cassoulet) to world influences (wasabi-crusted chicken breast with rice noodles, Kashmiri style chicken korma, shrimp, mango and cashew salad, etc.).
Despite the fact that this is marketed towards home cooks, many of the recipes are time-consuming / labor-intensive and call for expensive and hard-to-find ingredients (Wagyu beef, truffles, veal stock, etc.), but that is to be expected to a degree. These recipes are clearly aimed at advanced home cooks; if I want to eat the sort of food in "In the Kitchen with Cordon Bleu," I'll make a reservation for an upscale restaurant.
Many of the photos are filler, featuring black-and-white artistic closeups on kitchen utensils or hands rather than illustrating techniques or finished dishes (there are fewer than 40 recipe photos for 100 recipes in the book). Granted, the French-English glossary is quite helpful, but I would have appreciated more of a focus on techniques within the individual recipes than summarizing it in the glossary. At the back is a listing of all the Cordon Bleu campuses around the globe.
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