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The Alice B. Toklas Cookbook Paperback – 3 Jan 1998

4.6 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Serif; 2nd edition edition (3 Jan. 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1897959192
  • ISBN-13: 978-1897959190
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 1.6 x 21 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 352,155 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"It will be the fiercest Francophobe who can read Alice's recipes and not hanker for a taste, the dullest cook who will not want to get to the kitchen and try them out."--Time

"A cookbook that is delightful by way of its fine food has been made doubly pleasurable by the addition of shrewd worldly comment, by reminiscences, personalities, anecdotes, by the strong characters of the Misses Stein and Toklas."--New York Herald Tribune

"Alice was one of the really great cooks of all time.... The secret of her talent was great pains and a remarkable palate."--James Beard

"A book of character, fine food, and tasty human observation."--The New Yorker

Alice was one of the really great cooks of all time.... The secret of her talent was great pains and a remarkable palate. --James Beard"

A book of character, fine food, and tasty human observation. --The New Yorker"

It will be the fiercest Francophobe who can read Alice s recipes and not hanker for a taste, the dullest cook who will not want to get to the kitchen and try them out. --Time"

A cookbook that is delightful by way of its fine food has been made doubly pleasurable by the addition of shrewd worldly comment, by reminiscences, personalities, anecdotes, by the strong characters of the Misses Stein and Toklas. --New York Herald Tribune" --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Back Cover

Long before Julia Child discovered French cooking, Alice B. Toklas was sampling local dishes, collecting recipes, and cooking for the writers, artists, and expats who lived in Paris between the wars. Hemingway, Fitzgerald, Wilder, Matisse, and Picasso shared meals at the home she kept with Gertrude Stein, who famously memorialized her in The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas.

The Alice B. Toklas Cook Book, however, is her true memoir: a collection of traditional French recipes that predates Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Toklas supplies familiar recipes such as coq au vin, bouillabaisse, and boeuf bourguignon, along with what is perhaps the earliest instructions for haschich fudge ( which anyone could whip up on a rainy day"), and she entertains with fascinating memories of Paris Toklas' home for most of her life and of rural France, Spain, and America." --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I read this cook book alongside Gertrude Stein's 'The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas.' These books are fascinating to read as a pair and have certainly made me want to learn more about the lives of Stein and Toklas.

Most of the recipes in this book are related to events in the author's life, including dinner parties thrown for famous artists such as Picasso, and dishes prepared by friends and servants. There is a focus on French cuisine (with a famous dish involving 100 frogs' legs) with some Austrian and American dishes included. The book also features a controversial recipe for Hash Fudge. However, unless you are already a very experienced cook, these recipes may be a little hard to follow as they are very short and there is little discussion of technique. The measurements and equipment referred to as well as some of the ingredients are also now quite out of date and may require some re-interpretation.

Though undoubtedly of interest to people with a strong interest in cooking and the origins of recipes, I would suggest this is better read as a work of memoir, particularly in terms of the relationship between food and memory. It gives an insight into life with servants in early 20th Century France, and Toklas' chapter on the comings and goings of her various cooks and housekeepers was one of my favourite parts of the book. I also enjoyed her descriptions of wartime rationing and examples of recipes that were used in times of scarcity.

It is an engaging read and Toklas' style is cheerfully amusing. However, I would suggest it is better to read this with at least some background knowledge of the life and times of Gertrude Stein. If you are already interested in the lives of the great 20th Century artists and the influence of Gertrude Stein, this will give you an interesting insight into their domestic lives.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've had a version of this since the 1960s and have always liked dipping into it, for the idiosyncracies of the characters and for the occasional trial of a recipe. But I think you would probably need to have a nostalgic streak to enjoys it as much as I have and do.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The book arrived in good time and in mint condition. Even the box matched the fly cover and the book cover. It was purchased as a gift and will be received with delight, I have no doubt. It was a pleasure ordering and receiving this book.

I have not used the book myself but the recipient had it previously and said it was a wonderful cook book and she really missed it since it disappeared.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A very good addition to my cook book library,however,there's a good plus with narrative of how certain dishes evolved in the book, really enjoying the contents
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Format: Paperback
This book is both a classic, and an original. Original in the sense of a successful hybrid of cookbook and reminiscence. It is literature, and evokes the period of Gertrude Stein and her contemporaries.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In remembrance of her old mate Rose.

Bought for a dear friend who has created something amazing, inspired by the River Cafe Gals.

Great read, fantastic traditional recipes of the old school - wonderfully nostalgic entertainment
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