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The Silver Spoon (Cookery) Hardcover – 24 Oct 2011

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 1505 pages
  • Publisher: Phaidon Press; New edition (24 Oct. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0714862452
  • ISBN-13: 978-0714862453
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 18.4 x 27.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (80 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,400 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

'a seriously comprehensive guide that shows that Italian food is about for more than just pasta and pizza. … One for serious Italophiles.'
The Times

'A joy to cook from. … may well prove to be the only Italian cookery you'll ever need.'
Daily Mail

'The most successful Italian cookbook of all time.'
The Financial Times

'Big and bountiful, it's a welcoming jumble of recipes…and by the looks of it, it may give cookbooks by American celebrity chefs a run for their money'
The New York Times Magazine

'The most exhaustive Italian cookbook in recent memory, this volume offers something for every cook, regardless of their skill level, and deserves to be a fixture in American kitchens.'
Publishers Weekly

'It's not so much one more Italian cookbook as the one-volume encyclopedia of Italian home cookery.'
The Wall Street Journal

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Pots TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 18 Aug. 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have been using this book for a few years now - it has become a dependable friend in the kitchen. The book is enormous, comprising 1263 pages. It is divided into various chapters covering the basics of Italian cooking, and other chapters covering the key groups of foods. It ends with a range of menus provided by well-known Italian chefs. It has two indexes at the back: one for recipes, and one for ingredients.

This book is not for the feint-hearted beginner, in my view. I say this because it assumes some reasonable cooking skills. It presents recipes plainly, almost entirely without pictures, and certainly without hand-holding niceties. The instructions are often quite minimal, comprising a list of ingredients, and a paragraph of instructions. Having said this, the dishes themselves are usually fairly simple to prepare. It is not a glossy coffee table book - it is what it is, and it simply gets on with it. I like that about it.

I have learned a lot from this book. Its chapter on hot and cold sauces has provided me with some handy ways to whistle up many fantastic sauces in next to no time. The recipes are highly adaptable, so if you want to invent something, you can use many of the recipes as a starting point. For example, many of them require a whole chicken, but you can adapt this for chicken pieces, and modify the cooking process from oven to hob accordingly.

This is a very traditional Italian book, originally made for Italians. It therefore occasionally includes some startling ingredients, such as offal, brain, trotters, and so on. But don't let that deter you. These are easily avoided if that's not what you want to serve up!

I have made several hundred of the dishes in this book, and there are still a huge number to do.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Azais on 31 Oct. 2011
Format: Hardcover
Having just received my new copy of the 2011 edition of The Silver Spoon, i felt compelled to write a review. Especially after reading some of the many negative reviews about the book.
I am an advanced home cook, my knowledge in cooking is solely theoretical. Going through the book over the last few days i can categorically say that one must possess a higher than average grasp of the techniques in the kitchen to be able to follow the recipes through with great results.
If however you don't cook very often or lack mediocre knowledge in cooking/baking techniques then i would recommend you dont buy this book.

The ingredients and methodology for the recipes are vague and sometimes lacking even in amounts, This is not a typo but i believe that the book is aimed at accomplished home cooks that don't need every little instruction spelling out for them.
If one was to follow the recipes exactly then this would sure end in disaster for a occasional cook so be prepared! However, if you are in the know, then the book and its contents are superb. it is truly an authentic italian gem!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Rhi on 9 Jan. 2012
Format: Hardcover
I got the new edition of the Silver spoon (red hardback) as a christmas present, This is a lovely book with a thousands of recipes but the problem I found with this book is that the proof reader must have skipped some sections because there are a number of errors relating to page references but a major issue on in the meat section for Pork on the diagram for the Pig cuts, where half of the cut descriptions are missing and sadly I don't think the Pigs leg is on it's back. Otherwise the book it brilliant with lovely images and nicely categorised sections.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By I. Ramadani on 8 Dec. 2011
Format: Hardcover
Just thought to mention that the majority of the reviews are made on the previous editions of this book. There are only a few reviews on this edition (with the red cover) so don't get misled when reading the negative reviews and think that they belong to this edition.

I have no idea why Amazon does this but I wish they would stop sticking the older editions reviews to the newer one.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mr. J on 2 May 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Absolutely essential for the collection, the basics learnt from this book will get you using it as reference instead of tutor in no time. The translaion isn't lazy, it just requires common sense and a little understanding of US measures and proportions, as that's the country that translated it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Hotwired on 3 May 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a brilliant book whose range is massively wider than italian classics. It would almost serve as the only book you really need for european cooking. Structure works really well and it has a very comprehensive index, which you need.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By FussFreeFlavours on 20 Mar. 2012
Format: Hardcover
I love Italian food. Simple, and with a focus on the best presentation of fresh ingredients. Of course, not being Italian and not having been immersed in an Italian grandmother's cooking throughout my childhood, I'm sure that my main experiences of Italian food is one degree removed from the real thing.

For those who, like me, do want to experience the real thing comes The Silver Spoon, a comprehensive cookbook of regional Italian food. The blub claims that this is Italy's best selling cookery book (although, at 1504 pages, I'm not sure a word as simple as "book" covers this. "Tome", perhaps, or is that a little pretentious?), and I can easily believe it. Over the 60 years that this book has been published in Italy, it has evolved into the definitive source, containing over 2,000 recipes and around 450,000 words. It is weighty too, at 3.2kg, it is the second heaviest cook book I own, the weighty crown won by Larousse Gastronomique at 3.4kg!

The book is broken down mainly into the constituent parts of a meal, with colour coded chapters on: antipasti, first course, eggs and frittata, vegetables, fish, meat, poultry, game, cheese, desserts and finally a chapter on menus for festive occasions and one on menus by special chefs. Within each chapter, the recipes are arranged by the main ingredient; so, for example, all cauliflower recipes are together. The recipes are generally short, avoiding over complication; most of the recipes are unaccompanied by photos. This is a book stuffed full of text, designed to live in the kitchen and be used. It's not one for the coffee table.

Talking of cauliflower, we tried the cauliflower with ham; where boiled cauliflower is then roasted with ham, parmesan, boiled eggs and fried breadcrumbs.
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