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Avec Eric Hardcover

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; 1 edition (November 9, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470889357
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470889350
  • Product Dimensions: 3 x 3.8 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #237,366 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Fall into Cooking Featured Recipe: Roasted Pork Loin with Wild Mushrooms, Garlic, and Sage Pan Jus from Eric Ripert’s Avec Eric

This recipe was inspired by my visit to Tuscany and the flavors of the autumn season that were so prevalent while I was there. Searing the pork loin to lock in the juices keeps the meat moist, and the rich pan sauce is made using the drippings from the roasted pork along with the earthy mushrooms. I like to put the garlic cloves in the pan with their skins still on so they sort of roast inside their case; the result is tender roasted garlic. --Eric Ripert

Serves 4


1 (2-pound) pork loin, trimmed
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 garlic head, cloves separated, unpeeled
3 sage sprigs
2 bay leaves, lightly crushed
¼ cup dry white wine
½ cup chicken stock
– fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

12 ounces assorted wild mushrooms, such as morels, porcini, chanterelles and/or oyster mushrooms
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 small shallot, finely minced
2 teaspoons finely minced garlic
2 thyme sprigs
– fine sea salt and freshly ground pepper


Using kitchen string, tie the pork loin once lengthwise and then crosswise, spacing each tie 1 inch apart. Season the pork generously with salt and pepper.

Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Carefully add the pork loin to the hot pan and sear on all sides until golden, about 6 to 8 minutes. Add the whole garlic cloves. Lower the heat, cover, and continue roasting until medium, about 25 to 30 minutes. Check the doneness of the pork loin by inserting a meat thermometer into the center of the loin; it should register 150°F (it will continue cooking while resting). Transfer the loin to a cutting board and let rest. Reserve the sauté pan.

Meanwhile, prepare the mushrooms: trim and clean all of the mushrooms. Heat the oil and butter in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the shallot, garlic and thyme, and cook until the shallot softens, about 3 minutes. Add the mushrooms and sauté until the mushrooms are tender and golden brown, about 5 minutes. Set aside.

Heat the pan (reserved from the pork) over medium heat. Add the sage and bay leaves, and deglaze the pan with the white wine. Simmer to reduce the wine by half, then add the chicken stock and bring to a simmer to lightly reduce again. Add the sautéed mushrooms to the sauce and remove from the heat; set the mushrooms and sauce aside for about 5 minutes to infuse.

Slice the pork loin crosswise into 1-inch-thick slices and lay 3 slices on each of 4 plates. Spoon the mushrooms over and around the pork loin, spoon the jus around, and serve immediately.

Gail Simmons Interviews Eric Ripert

Based on his popular PBS TV program Avec Eric, this cookbook follows culinary superstar Eric Ripert as he explores the culture and culinary traditions of regions around the world, then returns to his home kitchen to create dishes celebrating the bounty of each one. Here Gail Simmons--judge and critic for Bravo's award-winning Top Chef series and host of the latest culinary competition Just Desserts--chats with Chef Eric Ripert about his new book and series.

Gail Simmons: When did you decide that cooking was something that you wanted to pursue?

Eric Ripert: I always had a passion for eating and being in the kitchen and looking at cookbooks. I was a weak student, and my teachers told me that I needed to find a profession that would allow me to build on my strengths. I was fifteen at the time I decided to become a chef.

Gail Simmons: People come to Le Bernardin for the ultimate dining experience, but Avec Eric was created for the passionate home cook. Is there any advice you can give the home cook about how they should approach these recipes?

Eric Ripert: I was thinking like a home cook who invited friends to my home for a simple meal, following the seasons and using those ingredients to create one amazing experience that would allow me to mingle, eat and drink with my guests. The recipes and ingredients always reflect a place and the inspiration I took away from that place. On the show, we talk a lot about respecting the ingredients, the seasons, and the people who are providing those ingredients, from farmers and fisherman to hunters and butchers.

Gail Simmons: It’s one thing when a chef has the opportunity to go out and meet the farmers and place big orders and think locally and seasonally but if I’m cooking at home, how can I embrace those philosophies?

Eric Ripert: It depends on where you live! If you live in New York, we often find that we are disconnected from our food sources, but, even here, there are farmer’s markets available to us. We can establish relationships with these people, who make the effort to come with their harvests, and we can ask them to give us tips about using these ingredients in the kitchen. Even if you go to a big market, you can talk to the butcher and ask him questions that will help you at home. If you can share that special moment, it can be fun and inspiring, with the opportunity to cook with ingredients that you may otherwise have not dared to touch.

Gail Simmons: How did you decide to make Avec Eric? Where did the original idea come from?

Eric Ripert: I wanted to do some television and demystify where inspiration comes from for a chef. When we produced the show with Anomaly, we decided that we would introduce the audience to the kitchen of Le Bernardin and show them the behind-the-scenes work; travel to inspiring locations and share the interaction with growers, farmers, fisherman, and hunters; and finally return to my home kitchen and cook a fresh, simple dish inspired by my travel.

Gail Simmons: How did you come to decide what pieces of your kitchen you would show everyone?

Eric Ripert: For me, the saucier lives in the most sacred place in the kitchen because the combination of knowledge and wisdom makes someone a true saucier. It’s all about displaying the craft, using strong knife skills, learning how to sauté a fish, and more. You don’t measure flavors. They are in the mind, and then they are transformed into a remarkable sauce by the combination of complex flavors. I wanted to show how the saucier is creating complex flavors with different ingredients and maintaining them in a dish with big flavor.

Gail Simmons: What is your favorite recipe in the book?

Eric Ripert: I always go back to ones that remind me of my grandmother and were inspired by her, Tarragon and Citrus-Honey Vinaigrette and Roasted Chicken with Za’Atar Stuffing, among many others.

Gail Simmons: Was it your hope for this book that, for example, if I never get to Chianti or have the opportunity to hunt wild boar, this book could provide a small window of inspiration?

Eric Ripert: If you cannot get to these places, you can dream about them. Someday, you might visit or you might have a similar experience that will remind you about the times that you have used and enjoyed this book in the kitchen. You can create excitement by going into your kitchen and cooking something from your own experience, whatever it is, even if it is not one from far away.

Gail Simmons: It sounds like this book is a template of your stories, along with the instructions for going into the kitchen and creating the stories on your own.

Eric Ripert: Yes, exactly. If you are a beginner cook, I encourage you to follow the recipes and menu suggestions. If you are a more experienced cook, you should feel free to substitute other fresh ingredients for those that I suggest in the recipes. This book should represent the beginning of your culinary adventures in your kitchen. The recipes are simple and can be modified if you don’t have certain ingredients. If you want to make salad and you don’t have Romaine lettuce, then you can use Boston lettuce. Be passionate in the kitchen and let my inspirations guide your own.

Gail Simmons: When you’re away from your home, what food do you crave the most?

Eric Ripert: If it’s on the weekend, I crave meat because I eat fish all week!

Gail Simmons: What’s your favorite way of eating meat? Eric Ripert: The Whole Roasted Beef Tenderloin with Red Wine Butter Sauce or Seared Skirt Steak and Spinach Salad with Red Wine-Shallot Vinaigrette are two great choices from Avec Eric.

More Recipe Excerpts from Avec Eric

Deviled Eggs with Smoked Salmon

Grape, Almond and Radicchio Salad with Black Olives

Seared Salmon with Sautéed Pea Shoots and Ginger-Soy Vinaigrette

From Publishers Weekly

Ripert, chef of the famed New York restaurant Le Bernardin and author of On the Line, takes readers on a culinary journey from Italy to California in this companion piece to his PBS series of the same name. Ripert aims to share how his cultural adventures spark the creative process. While he falls short of his overall goal, his recipes and the amazing photos that outnumber the dishes more than make up for this lapse. The roasted pork loin with wild mushrooms, garlic, and sage pan jus from Tuscany will tempt even the most faithful of vegans, while heirloom tomato salad with black garlic and white balsamic, and white asparagus with anchovy-herb butter, both from Los Gatos in California, proclaim the supremacy of vegetables. Marshall, California, showcases fruits from the sea, a subject Ripert knows more than a little about; oyster sangrita and whole roasted red snapper with Thai spices and coconut rice accent the freshness of the ingredients, and Ripert includes sidebars on oyster shucking and tasting, which complete the oyster encounter. Journeys to Italy's Livorno, Mugello, and Fonterutoli as well as the Sonoma region of California and the Cayman Islands round out Ripert's expedition. While the randomness of his destinations make the book seem like an afterthought, the array of appetizing dishes that Ripert offers is worth the price. (Nov.) (c)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

More About the Author

Eric Ripert is grateful for his early exposure to two cuisines--that of Antibes, France, where he was born, and to Andorra, a small country just over the Spanish border where moved as a young child. His family instilled their own passion for food in the young Ripert, and at the age of 15 he left home to attend culinary school in Perpignan. At 17, he moved to Paris and cooked at the legendary La Tour D'Argent before taking a position at the Michelin three-starred Jamin. After fulfilling his military service, Ripert returned to Jamin under Joel Robuchon to serve as chef poissonier.

In 1989, Ripert seized the opportunity to work under Jean-Louis Palladin as sous-chef at Jean Louis at the Watergate Hotel in Washington, D.C. Ripert moved to New York in 1991, working briefly as David Bouley's sous-chef before Maguy and Gilbert Le Coze recruited him as chef for Le Bernardin. Ripert has since firmly established himself as one of New York's--and the world's--great chefs.

In 1995, at just 29 years old, Ripert earned a four-star rating from the New York Times. Ten years later and for the fourth consecutive time, Le Bernardin again earned the New York Times' highest rating of four stars, becoming the only restaurant to maintain this superior status for this length of time, without ever dropping a star.

In 1997, GQ named Le Bernardin the best restaurant in America, and in 2007, the magazine named Le Bernardin one of "Seven Food Temples of the World." In 2005, New York magazine declared Le Bernardin the #1 restaurant in the city, awarding it five stars in the inaugural restaurant rating issue - a position it holds today. Also in 2005, Bon Appetit declared Ripert's Butter-Poached Lobster with Tarragon and Champagne its "Dish of the Year."

Le Bernardin continues to receive universal critical acclaim for its food and service. The Michelin Guide, which made its New York debut in 2005, honored Chef Ripert and Le Bernardin with its highest rating of three stars in 2005 and each year thereafter. The Zagat Guide has recognized the restaurant as the "Best Food" in New York City for the last eight consecutive years. In 1998, the James Beard Foundation named Le Bernardin "Outstanding Restaurant of the Year" and Eric Ripert "Top Chef in New York City." In 1999, the restaurant received the "Outstanding Service" award from the Beard Foundation, and in 2003, the Foundation named Ripert "Outstanding Chef in the United States." In his year-end dining feature, Frank Bruni of The New York Times selected Le Bernardin as the "Best Meal of 2008." In 2009, Le Bernardin ranked 15 on The S. Pellegrino World's 50 Best Restaurants list and upheld this honor the following year.

In addition, Ripert has partnered with The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company to open restaurants at various destinations including Blue in Grand Cayman, Westend Bistro in Washington D.C., and 10 Arts Bistro in Philadelphia.

Ripert has served as a guest judge on four seasons of Bravo's "Top Chef" and can be seen a judge on six episodes of the seventh season, which premieres in June 2010. He has also appeared on the Late Show with David Letterman, The Charlie Rose Show, Ellen DeGeneres, TODAY, Regis & Kelly, and Martha Stewart. In fall 2008, Ripert published "On the Line," his second cookbook with Artisan. In 2002, Artisan published A Return to Cooking, a collaboration between Ripert, photographers Shimon and Tammar Rothstein, artist Valentino Cortazar, and writer Michael Ruhlman that was selected by Newsweek as one of its best books of the season. In September 2009, AVEC ERIC, Ripert's first TV show, debuted on PBS stations and the second season is scheduled to premiere in the fall of 2010.

Ripert is the Chair of City Harvest's Food Council, working to bring together New York's top chefs and restaurateurs to raise funds and increase the quality and quantity of food donations to New York's neediest. When not in the kitchen, Ripert enjoys good tequila and peace and quiet. He lives on the Upper East Side and Sag Harbor with his wife and young son.

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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See all 18 customer reviews
The book was a gift for a dear friend and she was 'tickled pink'.
Nancy A. Thompson-jones
That said, I think I find this cookbook so compelling because reading it is like taking a mini vacation.
The recipes are explained well and there are plenty of pictures to help visual the dish.
E. Vento

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

34 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Jane Smith on December 1, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Avec Eric: A Culinary Journey with Eric Ripert , by Eric Ripert, $34.95, Hardcover (Wiley)

original post: [...]

I have put off writing this review for almost a month now. Out of fear. The minute I received this book, I was mesmerized. The "culinary journey" begins with a foreword by Anthony Bourdain. In the beginning, one may possibly assume that this is going to be another mediocre book thrown together and sold based on a name. Far from it.

The book takes you from the kitchen of Le Bernardin, to Love Apple Farm in California, to Tomales Bay, Tuscany, Caymen Islands, and back again. With the journey comes over 100 recipes ranging from seaweed to beef tartar, and everything in between. The recipes and the trip that you are taken on is proof of how, and why, Chef Ripert has managed to maintain a four star review for over 20 years.

About the Book:
In my initial opinion, the recipes were geared to a middle or advanced cook. I felt lost. In hind sight, it is geared to everyone, including beginners....I just felt insecure about cooking some of the dishes. The mix of the recipes is fantastic. Drinks, seafood, beef, salads, etc. Most people cook only 5-10 recipes from any given cookbook. This one is a "full cooker". I have tagged an additional 30 or so, after the 3 I cooked for this review. The only drawback, and I use that term loosely, is that a handful of ingredients may not be easy to find in some areas. Not impossible; just not easy.

The photography gives you the feeling that you are looking through a personal vacation album. Chef Ripert is smiling in every picture and it is certainly not a wonder why.
Read more ›
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Staxie on December 9, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I am far from an advanced cook. I am, however, a fan of reality TV and
French men. Ergo, I received not one, but TWO copies of Avec Eric for
my birthday. I'm not as culinarily articulate as the reviewer who
preceded me, but I do share her enthusiasm for this book.

While I do enjoy food, if forced to choose, I'd probably take a fancy
vacation over a fancy meal. That said, I think I find this cookbook so
compelling because reading it is like taking a mini vacation. The
photos are INCREDIBLE. I've attempted only two of the recipes so far -
the deviled eggs with smoked salmon (p 249) and the pasta carbonara (p 159). I was proud of both dishes. (Point of reference: I once took a cooking class in Mexico, and when I came back to the states I wanted to show off my mole sauce skills. I ended up destroying my best friend's most beloved pot, bursting into tears, and ordering Mexican food from the place around the corner. Just sayin. You don't have to be an expert to attempt these recipes.)

If you (or someone in your life) is a foodie, or a traveler who enjoys cooking even a little bit, pull the trigger and buy this cookbook!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By wogan TOP 100 REVIEWER on December 17, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Eric Ripert presents a nice cookbook with a colorful cover of his travels, the food he encounters and the people he meets. Pictures and descriptions are given in an interesting manner which also includes descriptions and something about the approximately 115 recipes he includes. Most are seafood and meat, salads and sides. There are some desserts and drinks also and for many he gives wine pairings.

For some the print might be on the small side, especially as you are trying to follow along as you cook. The book also is hard to hold down flat as you are trying to use it.
Most recipes have a picture of the dish and they do look wonderful. The Bistecca Alla Fiorentina (Florentine style steak), chestnut cake, walnut brittle and roasted beef tenderloin with red wine butter sauce are all especially appetizing.
These are probably not recipes for a beginning cook, but are not that difficult to prepare, just needing some determination, time and willingness to do more than a simple throw in a pan and cook. Some of the ingredients are not the typical grocery store fare, like wild boar shoulder, black truffles, duck breasts, peekytoe crabmeat, black garlic, wakame.

Those who wish to try some different dishes than they can find in an `ordinary' cookbook would enjoy these recipes and especially reading of Eric's travels and looking at his enticing pictures.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By J. Espinoza on August 20, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
First of all, I haven't went through this book completely. I'm reading it. This is the kind of book able to provide you with knowledge beyond the simple, everyday experience of cooking. When you know about the wild boar hunting in Tuscany or about a restauranteur who pays respect everyday to the pacific ocean by riding some waves and then, prepared and in peace goes to his restaurant to prepare the food and share love, then you know cooking is love, sharing and living. Eric shares loves and his many years in the cooking business. I'm light years away from Mr. Ripert knowledge and experience but one thing it's true, I want to cook with the same love and pleasure for life as Eric Ripert does!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By DKUSA on January 22, 2011
Format: Hardcover
This is one of those wonderful cookbooks that stays off the book shelf and IN the kitchen!! I'm a huge fan of Chef Ripert. His recipes are superb. His stories of his experiences are passionate. This cookbook really speaks how deeply Chef is in love with cooking. Nothing less than excellence here!!
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