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Crave: The Feast of the Five Senses Hardcover – April 26, 2005


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 268 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow; First Edition edition (April 26, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060012854
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060012854
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 0.9 x 11.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #836,783 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Lefebvre, an intense young chef who trained in France before coming to the U.S. to cook at L'Orangerie in L.A., is passionate about the sensual cooking experience. His enthusiasm is infectious, and this volume stands as a convincing argument that cooking can be as exhilarating as surfing (which, he explains, is his second love), awakening the senses and making the cook feel more alive. His recipes, which range from basic to complex, are categorized by sense; there are chapters on sight, touch, smell, hearing and taste. Of course, Lefebvre explains, "there's a lot of crossover... what's the point of creating the most beautiful dish in the world if it has no flavor?" A simple Cream of Broccoli Soup in the sight chapter is an "exercise in preserving the color of vegetables." The smell chapter celebrates all that's aromatic with such recipes as White Sea Bass with Roasted Figs and Four Spices. Côte de Boeuf with brown sugar, herb salad, and Pommes Soufflés, an entry in the hearing chapter, sizzles fiercely as it's cooked. The intriguing recipes are only part of what's appealing about this book, which could help bring a vivacious spark to the most mundane of cooking routines.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Review

“Compelling. . . . Each time I tried a recipe, I craved more.” (—L.A. Times)

2nd Place, Special Trade-Cookbook Category, New York Book Show (No Source)

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By B. Marold HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWER on June 22, 2005
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
`Crave' by the `award winning' executive chef of the Los Angles restaurant Bastide, Ludo Lefebvre elicits anticipation from its oversized format, its high price, and the very hip, tattooed pic of the author on the front cover. I am happy to say that the book delivers on it's expectations with a better than average restaurant cookbook.

Like Eric Rippert's book `Le Bernardin Cookbook', this is the kind of book which cries out for half stars, as I am quite happy to give it four and a half stars, yet there are some reasons the average cookbook purchaser may wish to pass on it. Fortunately, these reasons are few.

First, as with every good high-end restaurant cookbook, the recipes are simply not the kind you may be willing to make on a busy Tuesday or even on an average Sunday. This is because while there are relatively quick recipes in the book, there are just as many longish recipes requiring some arcane ingredients. So, you can't dip into this book the way you can a good book of Italian recipes such as Mario Batali's `Molto Italy' and come up with a good, relatively inexpensive, relatively quick AND interesting recipe.

Second, as I have already stated, the book is oversized and just a bit overpriced for the number of recipes.

Third, I sense that while Monsieur Lefebvre has very serious chops, with all the promise of an up and coming Jacques Pepin in the field of culinary education, he and his handlers may be just a little full of themselves in their presentation of the author. One example is my quoted fact that Ludo is an `award winning' chef, yet they give no information on what award it is he won. He was nominated for a lesser James Beard award, but he did not win.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Liamsmama on March 21, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I regret I bought this cookbook (and I did so based on the reviews here). I love cookbooks. But not only is Crave overpriced, many of the recipes call for exotic ingredients that I don't have the time to track down: dried hibiscus flowers, grains of Paradise (many of the recipes call for this particular salt), sea urchin roe, lots of fresh truffles (exquisite but SO expensive), verjus, acacia blossoms... and you have to have a whole vanilla pod for most of the dessert recipes, which of course will make anything taste divine but is also very pricey...

The book itself is large and beautifully produced, but Ludo obviously thinks much of his looks -large spreads of him barechested, hair in his eyes and photos of his tattoos on almost every page, I'm sorry but I kept thinking that hair MUST fall into the food.

I have no doubt everything would taste delicious but the recipes are def. not something you would whip up on a whim, and if you are a mom, I don't see you would have the time to make many of these recipes. I've got the Joy, Nigella, Bare Contessa, Art Smith, Anne Lindsay etc etc etc on my cookbook shelf and doubt that this one will ever make it off the shelf past them. Would gift it but the huge photos of this guy in it make me reluctant - the publishers obviously thought his sex appeal would drive women to shell out the money for a cookbook that will get little use.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Rose D'attilio on May 12, 2005
Format: Hardcover
I purchased this book for my love who is a shining star in the realm of culinary delights. So far, we have been nothing less than delighted! Finally a charming book that serenades the erotic senses with effortless and approchable charm. So stylish and delicious! Not a book that you will want to hide away in a cookbook drawer, it is worthy of the coffee table!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Dana H. on May 29, 2005
Format: Hardcover
I have had the great pleasure of eating Ludovic's one of a kind creations at both L'Orangarie and Bastide. This book is not only a treasure in that enables me to try to prepare some of his dishes at home, but it is also a great read for any "foodie" who appreciates the love and passion of food. Ludo is a master!!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Rebecca of Amazon HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 4, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
"Spiced with sultry nigella seed (sometimes confused with black cumin) and sumac, this bread tastes like a walk in the forest on a hot summer day." ~ pg. 243, Spiced White Bread

Ludo Lefebvre's CRAVE cookbook holds within its pages the most perfect puff pastry recipe you may ever try. I made the pastry yesterday and just drizzled icing over delicately crispy apple pastries. A sprinkling of nutmeg seemed perfect and I can truly say they are the best pastries I've ever made. The puff pastry cooks perfectly unlike many store bought versions that seem to cook unevenly and it is made with pure butter. The results were spectacular!

Many of the recipes in CRAVE are infused with the scent of cinnamon and nutmeg. The Spiced Bread is the first recipe I tried. The spice mixture is made from nutmeg, ginger, pepper and cloves and since I didn't have whole nutmegs, I used a ½ tablespoon nutmeg, 1/8 teaspoon dry ginger, 1/8 teaspoon pepper and ¼ teaspoon cloves. I crushed them all together with a mortar and pestle and then made the bread recipe using hot apple cider (infused with cinnamon, green cardamom, cloves and star anise) in place of the water, muscovado sugar for the granulated sugar, 2 ½ teaspoons instant yeast and 2 teaspoons lemon juice and 1 teaspoon zest for the "ground sumac" which I need to order.

The recipe can be adapted slightly if you don't have all the ingredients needed, but the spice mix seems essential. I also ground up the "nigella" which I've used before on Indian Naan to produce the faint memory of spicy onions. This is also called Charnushka and Kalonji.

The bread recipe worked especially well in my bread machine, although I only used the dough cycle the first time and tried to make the bread look like the picture on page 33.
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