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All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking Hardcover – October, 2004
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Throughout, Stevens's offers sensible, rewarding counsel. "If it comes down to a matter of cooking or not cooking dinner for your family," she says, "I recommend buying commercially raised chicken [as opposed to locally produced or other naturally raised poultry]. Make a satisfying home cooked meal, and sit down and enjoy it with your family." In other words, Stevens is wise. "The act of cooking on a regular basis will make you a better cook," she concludes, "and will improve the quality of your life and of those around you." --Arthur Boehm
From Publishers Weekly
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Top Customer Reviews
The recipes are easy. The author explains not only how, but why each step is taken. The recipes we've tried have turned out GREAT and our guests have been very impressed with the dinners we've served from this book.
I especially appreciated the explanations of the different types of cookware at the beginning of the book. A lot of topics I had questions about she answers -- types of meat cuts, braising vs. crock pot/slow cookers (she has about the same opinion of slow cookers as my Mom, who is another great cook - that it can be easy but generally has inferior results) and she has a nice resource section for purchasing items. I also liked the wine suggestions.
The photography is beautiful. This is a good book for both beginners and experienced cooks because it explains things in great detail and has the standard favorite recipes, but it also has a great selection of more unusual recipes that I've not seen in other cookbooks.
I'll be giving lots of these as gifts at Christmas.
Some of my favorite recipes include:
World's Best Braised Green Cabbage - it takes about 5 minutes (not counting cooking time) and almost no money to prepare but is far superior to any stewed cabbage I've ever eaten.
Braised Potatoes with Garlic and Bay Leaves - it is the best preparation of Potatoes EVER and is easy to throw together. They are like hot, savory candy when they come out of the oven.
Creamy Braised Brussel Sprouts - a completely different and superior way to cook brussel sprouts.
Quick Lemony Chicken with Prunes and Green Olives - Yes, it has prunes in it, but it comes together like voodoo and is fantastic with twice baked potatoes and a green salad.
Chicken Do-Piaza - I often combine this with the recipe for Caulifower, Potatoes and Peas Indian-Style for a one-pot meal with amazing Indian flavors.
Pork Loin Braised in Milk - This recipe, which like many in the book has very few ingredients, turns a pork roast (it doesn't have to be a loin) into something that tastes like a giant piece of creamy, mild Italian sausage.
The recommendations for side dishes and wine pairings are excellent. I am just beginning to explore wines and this book has helped me make some excellent discoveries.Read more ›
The name `braising', based on `brazier' and heating on hot coals mislead me for years when I knew more about French than I did about cooking and before I started reading about cooking in earnest. I imagined it was a type of grilling when it's only real connection to hot coals is the very old technique of placing coals on the top of Dutch Ovens cast with rimmed lids to accommodate the coals.
It is also easy to confuse braising with stewing. Braising is a very well-defined method characterized by browning a relatively large cut of protein or vegetable, followed by cooking over a low, all-around heat with liquid extending about 1/3 the way up the height of the primary ingredient. The braising container is tightly lidded so that vapor does not escape the cooking pot and designed to encourage condensation to drip back down on the braised food. Some braising vessels are also designed to leave little very little headroom between the primary ingredient and the lid. Stewing is a much less well defined technique which does not require a lid and is generally done with much more liquid and smaller pieces of food than a braise.
The list of classic `comfort food' braised dishes is long and familiar to Western foodies, headed up by coq au vin, sauerbraten, braised lamb shanks, and osso bucco.Read more ›
On top of all this, the wonderful aromas generated over the hours of sumptuous, slow cooking provide additional blessings of braising meals. Her inspiration came from all over the globe, from informal to classic recipes.
Find, experiment and find wonderful culinary community experiences in this collection. I have already with the following: Pork Riblets in Vietnamese Caramel Sauce; Country-Style Pork Ribs Braised with Mango, Lime & Coconut; Osso Buco all Milanese; Short Ribs Braised in Porter Ale with Maple-Rosemary Glaze; Chicken Do-Piaza (Indian Spiced Chicken Smothered in Onions); Tuna Pot Roast with Tomato, Basil & Capers; Creamy Braised Brussels Sprouts; The Simplest Potato & Leeks Braise.
With each delectable recipe comes great, thorough instructions, as well as wine/drink recommendations. Additionaly, there is frequent sidebar discussion on technique, ingredient, e.g. "using banana leaves." An excellent source listing as well as fantastic "An Opinionated Pantry."
This is large (421 pg.) resource that is easy and fun to use and will bring great response from your diners.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
First off I never heard of Molly Stevens. I found a recipe that called for braising and I went online to see just how to do this and saw the reviews on her "All About... Read morePublished 13 days ago by Eve M
Most cookbooks teach you what to cook.
This book teaches you *how* to cook.
And it's not that fine of a line. Read more
Some really great, delicious recipes.Many of them are even healthy!Published 6 months ago by Doug Sanders "dnsd30"
As the saying goes, "Give a man a fish, you feed him for a day. Teach him how to fish, you feed him for a lifetime." Molly Stevens sure taught me how to fish ... Read morePublished 6 months ago by Kristina
The recipes are good. But honestly why doesn't it indicate the temperature with the correct unit? Celsius? Fahrenheit? Very frustrating.Published 6 months ago by Amazon Customer
My only hesitation about this book was what size dutch oven to buy. She explains how you need a pot that fits what you are cooking and if it's too tall (7qt for fish fillets) it... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Nate H