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Cooking Hardcover – October 1, 2007


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Cooking + Sauces: Classical and Contemporary Sauce Making, 3rd Edition + Meat: A Kitchen Education
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 560 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press; First Edition; First Printing edition (October 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1580087892
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580087896
  • Product Dimensions: 1.5 x 9.6 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (76 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #142,171 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Put simply, Cooking is a revelation. No other cookbook so deftly illustrates as broad a scope of classic culinary methods and flavors as you'll find here. As a veteran chef and award-winning cookbook author, James Peterson is uniquely qualified to take food lovers into the modern kitchen and turn them into passionate, precise, intuitive cooks. What's most impressive about a book of this breadth and size (540 pages and 600 recipes, brought to life with 1500 vivid color photographs) is how accessible and fun it is to read. Every recipe in Cooking sings with a deep knowledge of the ingredients at hand, encouraging cooks not just to follow the recipe but to really understand and relish in the process, and the result is a terrific turn-to reference for any cook seeking inspired instruction. --Anne Bartholomew


From Publishers Weekly

Peterson's masterful survey of kitchen skills is a refreshing dose of tradition for anyone weary of quick-and-simple recipe books. The substantial volume is replete with step-by-step color photos, often 10 to 15 per recipe or process, that show the stages of a steak's doneness or how to make napoleons. The immense store of recipes to learn by is arranged partly by course and partly by main ingredient, with each section proceeding through many of his 10 basic techniques. Peterson is careful to include a range of dishes for every skill level, and cooks with any amount of experience will appreciate the numerous boxes that highlight preparation tips and tricks. Dominated by recipes like Fish Meunière and Boeuf à la Bourguignonne and with a prodigious chapter on sauces, the book feels like an old-fashioned French culinary education slightly updated with some nominally international dishes (Lamb Korma, Chiles Rellenos with Tomatillo Sauce), an attribute that may turn off some modern-minded cooks, but will reward those keen to absorb Peterson's deep knowledge of food and well-honed explanations for how best to prepare it. Color photos not seen by PW. (Oct.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

More About the Author

James Peterson is an award-winning food writer, cookbook author, photographer, and cooking teacher who started his career as a restaurant cook in Paris in the 1970s. He is the author of fifteen titles, including "Sauces," his first book and a 1991 James Beard Cookbook of the Year winner, and "Cooking," a 2008 James Beard Award winner. He has been one of the country's preeminent cooking instructors for more than 20 years and currently teaches at the Institute of Culinary Education (formerly Peter Kump's) in New York. He is revered within the industry and highly regarded as a professional resource. James Peterson cooks, writes, and photographs from Brooklyn, New York.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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If you love cooking and you want to learn a lot of things, THIS IS YOUR BOOK!.
Maragus
The recipes are very straightforward and clearly written, making it extremely easy to follow.
Pam
I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to improve their cooking skills.
F. Martin

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

219 of 227 people found the following review helpful By B. Marold HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWER on November 19, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
`Cooking' by culinary teacher extraordinaire, James Peterson has every symptom of being this veteran writer's magnum opus. Since Peterson has written many other excellent cookbooks, he may have created the problem for this book of living up to his earlier works. In fact, he has written the definitive book on `Sauces' plus `Fish and Shellfish', `Splendid Soups', `Essentials of Cooking', `Glorious French Food', and `What's a Cook to Do', which are among the best on their subject. This last volume is possibly the best book of the `Tips and Tricks' genre.
If you have none of Peterson's other books, your decision easy. Like most of his other books in their genres, this is among the best textbooks on cooking techniques for amateur cooks. Other books in this class are Madeleine Kamman's `The New Making of a Cook' and Darina Allen's `Ballymaloe Cooking School Cookbook'. It is better than the CIA's `The New Professional Chef', which is oriented toward restaurant cooking. The only cooking textbook I would recommend to supplement this book for most people is Jacques Pepin's classic `Complete Techniques'.
Peterson sees and says things which most other culinary writers miss or take for granted. High among this list of insights is that for the dedicated amateur cook, specific recipes are far less important than the mastering of general principals, so that one can reach that desirable plateau of culinary skill where you can cook without a cookbook. Two of my favorites I found in this book are the observation that olive oil is NOT a good oil for vinaigrettes (it becomes bitter) and when sautéing fish in aluminum pans, they must be heated quite hot or the fish will certainly stick.
To be sure, the objective of dedicating time exclusively to learning how to cook may not be for everyone.
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81 of 84 people found the following review helpful By Ronald Lerman on December 31, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I cannot overstate how good a book this is for the maniacially dedicated amateur. While I have dozens of classics to choose from, my favorite go to books for real "stretching" over the past twenty years have been Pepin's Technique/Methode and Kamman's New Making of a Cook. Peterson's 'Cooking' is far broader than Pepin's and comes with much better instructions and pictures than Kamman's, whose incessant scientific editorial comments can be bothersome.

Peterson's approach is no nonsense, modern and worldy; many of us view Hot and Sour Soup, Chile Rillenos or Indian Chutney as everyday eating out staples, and if we like the presentation or want to "shoot" the chef in action, our cell phones are on the ready. This then is the sheer genius of the work. Peterson teaches, with simple instructions and copius "how to" color photos (1500), both basic and advanced principles and then gives us recipes (600) tips and techniques that employ these skills for an evolving everyday mastery of more than just basic french cuisine. Beginners can easily master fluffy omelettes, linguine with clam sauce or thai curry. More advanced cooks can go for terrine of foie gras or croissants from scratch. Even the holiday only cook can find out how to roast turkey and get a carmelized crust for the gravy- how many once in while cooks get treated to those kinds of tips? Everything seems so accessible!

To be sure other texts offer more in depth text and picture coverage of specific areas (Rinehart's 'Bread Bakers Apprentice' or Pepin's 'Technique/Methode' with instructions for the arduous but rewarding 48hr. meat glaze are good examples). And there are more genuinely encyclopedic books of great value- James Beard's 'American Cookery' comes to mind.
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29 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Glen Powell on September 18, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Length: 3:33 Mins
If you want to learn the basics, or brush up on your technique, this is a great book for you.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Ronni Katz on January 18, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
James Peterson is a master chef and in his book gives the foodie the chance to learn from his experiences and gain some of his wisdom and insights in the kitchen. I am a cooking school grad (and former pastry chef) and as a "pro" in the field I found his explanations to be clear and concise. The book could be read by someone new to cooking and someone experienced and EACH would take away something of value! I recommend this to any foodie who LOVES to cook and wants to learn how to do it right!
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27 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Naomi Manygoats on December 7, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I love all of James Peterson's books and recipes that I have tried....this one is the best so far... the book is well worth twice the price! It is exceptional for any level of cook- wish that I had this as my FIRST cookbook... it may have been the only one I truly needed to learn from!

The section on lamb is stunning....
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Grill Head on March 4, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I purchased this on a whim because it looked good. I must say, I learned more from this than just about anything else I have done. The recepies are basic classics, but absolutely done to perfection. At the end of the work you understand why you did something, the effect it has on the food and how to apply this to other dishes. If you are serious about improving your game, you have to get this. Not cheap, but you will never regret it. If you are looking for the classic routine of locating the best ingredients and preparing them simply for maxium impact, this is for you.
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