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Alain Ducasse Nature: Simple, Healthy, and Good Hardcover – February 21, 2012


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Editorial Reviews

Review

"While Adour Alain Ducasse awaits the appointment of a new full-time head chef, its menu is getting a slight tweak. Beginning tomorrow, the restaurant's vegetarian tasting menu will be replaced with a health-focused "Nature" menu that will coincide with the recent release Ducasse's new book, Alain Ducasse Nature: Simple, Healthy, and Good. The five-course menu will run you $85 (same price as the vegetarian menu), with wine pairings going for an extra $85. It will be available through April. Take a first look, straight ahead." ~New York Magazine


"Health-minded cookbooks can have a whiff of self-righteousness—or be just plain bland. And those penned by Michelin-star-rated chefs can prove intimidating. Somehow, Alain Ducasse's Nature: Simple, Healthy and Good is neither. Published first in France, the gorgeous book—thanks in part to adorable sketches by Christine Roussey—actually made us hungry." ~Wall Street Journal


"Skillfully illustrated by Christine Roussey, the book follows the bespectacled Ducasse, his nutritionist cowriter Paule Neyrat, and Plaza Athénée head chef Christophe Saintagne as they take a conversational tour through an elaborate vegetable patch. And though bucolic, Nature never lets go of Ducasse’s signature finesse, bringing you inspired takes on produce, such as vegetables à la barigoule with vanilla." ~Vogue


"In his new book Nature: Simple, Healthy and Good, inspired by a series he's published in French, Ducasse's recipes are built on ingredients that are both nutritional and flavor powerhouses: whole grains, seafood, and nutrient-dense vegetables. If any chef can make healthy dishes taste divine, it's Ducasse." ~Epicurious.com

About the Author

Alain Ducasse is one of the most renowned chefs of his generation. He is also a restaurant designer, hotelier, and teacher of the culinary arts. Over thirty years, he has developed a unique savoir faire, which has helped define the contemporary art of living and eating. He is the first chef worldwide whose restaurants have been awarded three Michelin stars in two different cities. Paule Neyrat is a dietician, nutritionist, and author.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 360 pages
  • Publisher: Rizzoli (February 21, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0847838404
  • ISBN-13: 978-0847838400
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 1.6 x 9.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #226,428 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By R. Schultz on March 31, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Purchased two of these cookbooks. One for me and one for a friend. Made my first meals from it tonight and they were very good. The basis of the book is that AD has six items that he considers "staples". These six items are to be made in bulk and kept, then used in the many other recipes that are in the book. Without the staples you would spend considerable time preparing the various recipes AD has in the book. The recipes are not simple, nor are they unbelievably difficult. I made an apple and celery salad, a dried fruit spread as an appetizer, a vegetable medley and an ahi tuna steak recipe so I felt as though I got a good representation of what was in the book. I'm pleased and feel as though in the long run it will be an excellent addition to my cooking.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By I. Darren on February 18, 2013
Format: Hardcover
To the enthusiastic cook this might be the nearest they ever get to working with Alain Ducasse, one of the greatest living chefs of our time.

Through this imposing yet accessible hardback book, one is given direct access to Ducasse and gets the chance to learn a bit about his culinary philosophy and modus operandi as he turns his expert eye to natural, simple, healthy and good-for-you ingredients that can be transformed into some rather spectacular dishes. Proving there is more to Ducasse's repertoire than rich, intricate French dining, the reader can see Ducasse's take on a much more simpler French-dining experience that will still have you wanting more.

In many ways this book is a modern-day curate's egg. It certainly has its quirks such as the cartoon-style imagery that can be found throughout. They just seem to jar the otherwise pleasant flowk, its full-colour photographs and the great text. They didn't work for the reviewer in any case and proved to be a bit of a distraction.

Once you start digging in the book you begin to get on the Ducasse wavelength. Nothing has been taken for granted. Need a chicken stock? Lemons? Ketchup? Yes, there is a Ducasse recipe for that which forms part of its "larder essentials" section. Ducasse is serious about working with only the very best materials and nothing is left to chance. You might think this is fussy and over-the-top but one must presume that Ducasse really does know what he is doing and why. Even a busy chef, no matter how prolific and experienced, would not seek to do unnecessary work if they can avoid doing so as it would be a major draw on their resources. Put your trust in the master.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Bruce L on August 14, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Since this book is supposed to contain the quicker, simpler recipes of the world famous chef, one would assume that it could be handled by someone with little experience in the kitchen. Unfortunately, not so. While the recipes are, in fact, quite simple, and preparation is not complex or lengthy, Mr. Ducasse leaves out important details that perhaps an experienced chef takes for granted, but that may very well not occur to a novice. Case in point: the simple and straightforward recipe for a provençal standard--- ratatouille.

Almost all recipes containing aubergines, and most containing courgettes, if these watery vegetables are to be sautéed, tell you to salt and then drain them for 30 mins. or so, then rinse and dry before sautéing. Especially in the case of aubergines, this procedure used to be vital, since up until a few years ago, aubergines tended to be bitter, and removing the water also removed the bitterness. From all reports, bitterness is no longer a problem. However, it is still necessary to remove the water, but Mr. Ducasse makes no mention of this procedure. If you neglect to do so, cut the veggies into tiny cubes as illustrated in the photo, and sauté them, in toto, almost 20 minutes, as indicated, you will have watery rather unappetizing mush.

Moreover, Mr. Ducasse tells to to wash the tomatoes, but omits telling you to first remove the skins by plunging them briefly into boiling water and then peeling. So, your aubergine mush will be accented with little pieces of celluloid tomato peel--- yum! He does tell you to peel the peppers, but neglects to tell you how.

Also, aubergines and tomatoes come, of course, in various shapes, colors, and sizes and, frankly, there are some that are more appropriate for ratatouille than others.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By David Littlefield on February 8, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I choose this book because I am a fan of Alain Ducasse. I like the book becasue it gives surprising insight into how a master chef and amzing restaurateur finds and prepares food for friends and family. This imore than a recipe book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a beautifully illustrated cookbook with equally wonderful recipes. I would highly recommend to anyone who loves to cook
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Format: Hardcover
We enjoyed a "Nature Menu" at Alain Ducasse's Adour in Manhattan three years ago, the meal inspired by the release of the English language version of Alain Ducasse "Nature: Simple, Healthy, and Good". Each dish was delightful, and each was enhanced by its own small glass of wine, carefully chosen to enchant. Our menu:

Cucumber and yoghurt gazpacho with fresh mint and a crisp garnish,
served with a N.V. Hartogne-Taillet Champagne

Vegetables a la Barigoule with vanilla
served with a 2010 Domaine Mittnacht Pinot Blanc

Steamed Red Snapper with seaweed and sauteed greens
served with 2009 Domaine de L'Arlot "La Gerbotte" Nuits Saint Geroges

Oeuf en Cocotte with wild mushrooms
served with 2004 Domaine Hauvette Les Baux de Provence

Apples and Pears gently stewed in a Romertopf
served with 2008 Domaine Gresser "Kritt" Gewurtzramniner

The dishes looked beautiful on the table, and we were able glance through a copy of "Nature" over coffee and some special mini desserts served compliments of the restaurant.

We are both very accomplished home cooks, my companion much better trained in French style foods, but I have 15 days of training from the Culinary Institute, which teaches French cuisine at the beginners level. We were struck by several points in this interesting approach -- a "natural" approach to French cooking, focused on 60% ingredients, 40% technique. We both felt comfortable with the techniques described; in many respects Julia Child and Jacques Pepin have instilled those techniques in many of the home cooks we know and admire.
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