Customer Review

55 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stephanie: The Boon Companion, 7 May 2005
This review is from: The Cook's Companion: the Complete Book of Ingredients and Recipes (Hardcover)
It is almost impossible to begin a review of this book. The mere mention of Stephanie Alexander's "The Cook's Companion" conjures so many delights - of food, food tips and tricks, of information and of history - that the literary mind becomes carried away with sudden urges to describe the specific delight of dishes Stephanie Alexander has used rigour, clarity and passion to present in this culinary masterpiece.
"The Cook's Companion" is a wonderful cookbook, that much is sure. Stephanie has taken the unsual step of collating her recipies ingredient-by-ingredient, in alphabetical order. Foods common and obscure receive a chapter of their own, from the puzzling jerusalem artichoke to the everyday pork to the rare delicacy of Stephanie's own beloved tripe. These chapters contain not only the recipies but invaluable information about the history of the ingredient on world tables, as well as their seasonal appearances, their variations, and Stephanie's own personal experiences eating or serving each ingredient on offer. One of Stephanie's most useful gifts to the domestic chef are the lists she provides of companion ingredients of her selected food. Anyone confronted with a meal to cook and a full, if confusing, larder need only heed Stephanie's advice to improvise a delicious, full-flavoured speciality dish.
The recipies themselves prove why memories of Stephanie Alexander's Melbourne restaurant are so passionately recalled by her former diners. She is a chef who approaches every ingredient in her kitchen with an encycopaedic knowledge and a passionate love of its unique properties. In addition to jaw-droppingly delicious formal main courses, side dishes, sauces, desserts, soups, salads and hors d'oevres, her recipies and margin notes proffer hearty suggestions for scrumptious snacks, breakfasts and little treats as well as the best modes of preparation for special occasion foods. Since the publication of this book in Stephanie's Australian home, there are not many Australian households left that do not now prepare a Christmas turkey the Stephanie way.
The greatest thing about "The Cook's Companion" is not, however, its wealth of information or the scale and variation of its recipies. What makes the book essential for any household is its accessibility - the fact, like a favourite work of fiction, it can be picked up and enjoyed as a dynamic work of literature, dropped open at any page. It is a book that transports the reader from their own domestic surroundings into its author's wonderful, sensual world of kitchens, restaurants, pinics and intimate personal memories of food and the rituals of food preparation. Anyone who's lost their faith in the magic and mystery of a kitchen need only dive into this book to refire their taste buds and reawaken their culinary soul.
The book makes a wonderful present, eternally-beloved of its every recipient. Anyone who needs food needs this book - and, let's face it, that's all of us.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No

Be the first person to comment on this review.

[Add comment]
Post a comment
To insert a product link use the format: [[ASIN:ASIN product-title]] (What's this?)
Amazon will display this name with all your submissions, including reviews and discussion posts. (Learn more)
Name:
Badge:
This badge will be assigned to you and will appear along with your name.
There was an error. Please try again.
Please see the full guidelines ">here.

Official Comment

As a representative of this product you can post one Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
The following name and badge will be shown with this comment:
 (edit name)
After clicking on the Post button you will be asked to create your public name, which will be shown with all your contributions.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.  Learn more
Otherwise, you can still post a regular comment on this review.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
 
System timed out

We were unable to verify whether you represent the product. Please try again later, or retry now. Otherwise you can post a regular comment.

Since you previously posted an Official Comment, this comment will appear in the comment section below. You also have the option to edit your Official Comment.   Learn more
The maximum number of Official Comments have been posted. This comment will appear in the comment section below.   Learn more
Prompts for sign-in
 


Review Details

Item

4.9 out of 5 stars (21 customer reviews)
5 star:
 (19)
4 star:
 (2)
3 star:    (0)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
Used & New from: 67.47
Add to wishlist
Reviewer


Location: London, UK

Top Reviewer Ranking: 4,539,397