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Prune Hardcover – 4 Nov 2014

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 576 pages
  • Publisher: Random House (4 Nov. 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812994094
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812994094
  • Product Dimensions: 19.3 x 3.6 x 25.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 196,177 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Denis Vukosav on 4 Nov. 2014
Format: Hardcover
Prune besides being delicious fruit is known name for all gourmets who found themselves at least once in this East Village restaurant in the last 15 years.

But besides becoming famous for great food, Prune and its chef Gabrielle Hamilton managed to attract public even more by breaking some almost-carved-in-stone rules of the food preparation. When asked about the reasons for opening restaurant Gabrielle said she "…wanted an unassuming way to slip into the shallow end of the pool of New York City restaurants… wanted to cook for my neighbors."

But she succeeded to attract a lot more than her neighbors, including other cooks, chefs and writers of food literature, drawn by the simplicity and lack of pretense in Gabrielle Hamilton food preparation – such as pâté sandwiches and sardines on Triscuits.

And besides breaking additional rule that successful chefs usually not write great books with her memoir 13 years ago, these days she published new great book for those cooking at home - a nicer and more simplified version of things she did and still does to impress her restaurant public.

Gabrielle Hamilton with ‘Prune’ continues to break the rules, starting from the usual division of food, time of day or dish, therefore do not be surprised to find some completely different type of groceries or meal type one next to another.

Also what someone would miss while others will say, finally, these are self-explanatory for every serious home cook – reader will not be reminded at the beginning of each recipe to do usual stuff such as preheating the oven or the proper way how to cut meat or vegetables.
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1 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Martin Walsh on 25 Nov. 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
No cookbook is of any use without an index.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 85 reviews
61 of 66 people found the following review helpful
Comprehensive yet concise 6 Nov. 2014
By Jose Romero - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Restaurant cookbooks tend to be a peculiar sort. Tomes from Thomas Keller are beautiful coffee table books that are as gorgeous to look at as to cook from. Additionally, many of these books are marketed toward professional chefs and dedicated hobbyists. The techniques, equipment, and ingredient lists required make them inaccessible for the novice, if they choose to cook from them.

Prune, named after the landmark NYC brunch spot headed by Chef Gabrielle Hamilton, is another massive entry in the restaurant cookbook category. However, unlike the books from Keller, or recent ones from such celebrated restaurants as Noma, Daniel, Eleven Madison Park, Coi, and so on, Prune takes a more direct approach.

The cookbook is organized very much like a restaurant recipe book. For those not aware, most restaurant recipes are usually kept in huge binders, recipes are printed from chef's computer and the sheets are added to the binder in laminated looseleaf page holder, to protect from kitchen spills. These recipe books are essential for new cooks and old as they prepare the house recipes.

In Prune, Gabrielle speaks to you as you are one of her cooks. The basic instructions also include scribblings in the margin, made in Sharpie marker, with her clarifications and addenda. The recipe yields are restaurant size, so you must adjust them if you want feed less people. Also, the book assumes that you know your way around the kitchen. Little details you may find in books for the home cook--preheating stoves and pans, exact pan sizes and such are missing.

However, for a serious home cook or restaurant professional, Prune is a treasure trove of recipes. Chef Hamilton's fare doesn't really know much bounds--there are American, Italian, French influences in her cooking. Additionally, like most restaurant fare, her cooking is very rich. Chef Hamilton loves her heavy cream and butter.

I've been pouring through the recipes and many look outstanding. I've also visited her restaurant a few years ago and went during their heralded brunch service. Like many I waited an hour or so, as they do not take reservations and the brunch seats are coveted. All her best brunch dishes are here, so no more waiting hours to replicate them at home.

For food fans, serious home cooks, and professional, Prune makes a great resource to your cookbook library. Cocktail lovers will also find much to love here as their entire cocktail program is listed with recipes as well.

My only complaint is that I wish Chef Hamilton had another restaurant and as such another cookbook to look forward to, but you can tell Prune is her baby from the careful and direct instruction she provides in this book.
98 of 119 people found the following review helpful
Totally Dissapointed 14 Nov. 2014
By Kyle Pintarelli - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As a chef I was truly looking forward to this book. As a patron of Prune I was craving this book...569 pages of dissapointment. The "recipes" can be divided into two catagories: the first being so pedestrian that you almost feel insulted (ie radishes with butter, iced ovaltine and yet another recipe for deviled eggs). The second being so far in left field that no home cook would even want to attempt (ie stewed tripe milanese with gremolata) Honorable mention goes to a third catagory of recipes that even the most advanced home cook, chef or adventurous foodie would not want to serve their guests (ie calf's brains fritto misto)

Bottom Line: The writing style is pretentious at best, the recipes are mostly garbage and some are not even recipes...roasted beets with their tops.
46 of 54 people found the following review helpful
Coffee table book, not for serious cooking. 20 Nov. 2014
By Cebula - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Beautiful book for cookbook collectors and as a coffee table conversation piece, but not for serious cooking. I've been cooking for over 50 years, simple and complicated dishes from all over the world. I found only a few recipes I would want to try, and they did not work out. A baked whole cauliflower was inferior to other baked cauliflower recipes. And then there is the baked lamb shoulder in a wine/garlic/lemon/tomato sauce. The lamb turns out OK but nothing special. The sauce is a clash of ingredients (even with the recommended optional added burnt bread slices), and the amount of lemon slices (one cup for 3lb of lamb) is far too great.
Makes me wonder if the author actually made these recipes (as described) in her restaurant.
25 of 30 people found the following review helpful
PRUNE, the cookbook feels just like PRUNE, the restaurant. Authentic, honest and scrumptious. 6 Nov. 2014
By Pascale Poitras - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
For my 40th birthday, my husband took me and our girls to NY. The only restaurant I HAD to go to was Prune. Her memoir, Blood, Bones & Butter has not yet been released but I had read about it in so many different places. Needless to say, my birthday dinner at Prune will go down as one of the best experiences ever.... Likewise, her book was equally exceptional.
So, I waited and waited for the cookbook. I preordered it the MINUTE I could and my wait came to an end last night when my Amazon box arrived.

This beautiful cookbook is a work of art. I own hundreds of cookbooks- maybe over 1000. They are my hobby and I spend too much time cooking. Prune is not like any book I have ever seen before. Besides the mouthwatering recipes and photos covering OVER 500 pages, the most remarkable thing is the absence of Gabrielle's thoughts, ideas and dreams at the beginning of a chapter or recipe. However, if you read Blood, Bones & Butter, you will immediately recognize gabrielle' voice on each and every page. I found it to be enchanting and made me long to return to NY.

Beautiful recipes, especially the desserts and brunch. The smudged pages, handwritten notes and hole punches on each page added to its authenticity.

This book will be a very special Christmas gift for all the cooks in my life and I urge everyone to buy it right away. Thank you Gabrielle Hamilton!
15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
absolutely not worth the money 20 Dec. 2014
By nonegiven - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Oh, my gosh! Who would have thought? Vegetables, butter and salt work together. And that, dear reader, is the level of the recipes in this book: boring, uncreative, ordinary. What may be worse is that the author of this book comes across as having no concern whatsoever for the buyer. There is no Table of Contents and no Index making usage extremely difficult. The hand written notes are not helpful and seem to act as an excuse for poor directions. The little blotches of simulated spilled food on the pages are cutesy and interfere with such text as is provided. Yet this book made it into all of the "top 10 cookbooks of 2014" that I found. Perhaps the reviewers were taken in by the attempt to simulate a restaurant chef's recipe book, complete with notes to sous chefs, line chefs, prep staff servers and other employees. Well, it is a novel approach. But it's a big so what for the home cook. On the good side, the pictures are lovely. But give me clear directions, interesting recipes and save me the cost of printing glossy illustrations. My advice: Spend your money on "Mastering the Art of French Cooking", both volumes, if you don't already have thelm.
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