Customer Reviews: Crescent City Cooking: Unforgettable Recipes from Susan Spicer's New Orleans
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Customer Reviews

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on March 22, 2008
I received this book about three weeks ago, and have cooked almost exclusively from it since it arrived. Not one thing has disappointed. I sent my daughter a copy, since she spent most of a visit copying recipes from mine. We did the shrimp boil while she was here (delicious) with the epiphany lemon tart for dessert. Since then, my husband and I have enjoyed the shrimp with green chile cheese grits, and the Madeira mushrooms over goat cheese croutons. I've been reading it like a novel in bed at night, anxiously awaiting the next meal I can make from it. The photographs are beautiful, the writing approachable. Buy it.
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on November 12, 2007
I had the pleasure of working for Susan Spicer many years ago, so I might not be the best judge of `crescent city cooking'. However, and on the other hand, I know that she is a one hundred percent perfectionist. Spicer will not let one plate out of her kitchen that does not pass her absolute hard-core standards. And I think that `Crescent City Cooking' is one of those cook-books that anyone who has spent even a little time in the kitchen will appreciate due to both its simplicity and shrewd advice.

One thing that I would like to point out is that these recipes are in my opinion guidelines. Maybe you try a dish one time exactly the way it is spelled out here, but then half the fun is in playing slightly with the ingredients the next time. What is talked about here is how to get the most out of a dish... how to go about it the right way.

In my mind, Spicer is a culinary god. I always compare every single restaurant to Bayona. Some have come close, but ultimately none match the quality over-all of dining experience. Lastly, if you have never eaten at bayona, if they still seat out on the patio, and you are in New Orleans in the spring or fall, book a table.
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on December 17, 2007
Bayona's has always been my favorite New Orleans restaurant since I discovered it about 10 years ago. And it is my favorite because of Susan Spicer. Her recipes evoke happy memories, and are easy to follow. I need another cookbook like I need a hole in the head, but I am really glad I added this one to my collection.
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on May 17, 2010
Love Susan Spicer, love Bayona.

My husband and I have made some of the best dishes in our life by following this no-nonsense, easy to understand cookbook - I know the Goat Cheese Croutons with Wild Mushrooms in Madeira Cream is the best thing I have ever made in my life. My husband has made the Oyster, Eggplant, and Tasso Gratin, which was absolutely divine, the Shrimp and Tomato Bisque, which was so phenomenal words can't describe it, and the Herb-roasted Lamb Loin with Goat Cheese and Zinfandel Sauce, which was also 100% delicious. All of these dishes blew me away; most recently, however, we made the Shrimp Clemenceau, and we were both unimpressed - while it was certainly GOOD, it was in no way as amazing as the other dishes we had made from the cookbook. It makes me sad because the other recipes from here are so good, and I do want to try more of them....I just wish we hadn't been tainted by the lackluster Clemenceau recipe (and maybe I just don't like the dish?)....

Anyways, we are extraordinarily harsh judges on food, but I highly, highly recommend this cookbook to anyone who likes food and likes cooking (especially cooking of the southern persuasion, though Spicer is by no means just cooking Southern food).....just don't cook the Clemenceau (and next time you are in New Orleans, go to Bayona!)....
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on January 2, 2008
I've been hankering for this since 1996, when I first ate at Susan Spicer's enchanting Bayona. I love everything about it--the close-up, evocative photos, the author's candid, informative text and her inspiring, accessible recipes for the home cook. Over the years, I've told anyone visiting Nawlins not to miss a smoked duck PBJ with cashew butter, pepper jelly and apple-celery salad for lunch, and now, thanks to pages 166-167, I can replicate former sous chef Scott Freer's work of genius, which Ms. Spicer is honest and generous enough to credit. I also admire her international background, starting with her Danish mother, and the melange of cultures represented in her ingredients, recreations and inventions. Throughout are my favorite fare--creatures who live in the sea, bay, river and creek, once abundant, now farmed. Give a copy to every foodie on your list.
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on September 12, 2008
I grew up in New Orleans but never had the pleasure of eating at any of Susan Spicer's restaurants. How unfortunate that is! I can only imagine what that dining experience must be like now that I've been using this cookbook regularly. My husband and I cook a lot..out of Food & Wine, Cook's Illustrated, Bon Appetit. We've both been duly impressed by the meals and desserts we've prepared from Crescent City Cooking and look forward to cooking our way through the entire book. Did I mention that the book is as beautiful as the food is delicious? This is one of my favorite gift for the newly married couple. Well done!
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on June 7, 2015
As a New Orleans native, and a well traveled foodie, Susan Spicer is a goddess! Her restaurants Bayona, and the newer one in City Park are just amazing. With an incredible variety if outstanding restaurants at our doorsteps, this is always a top choice among locals. This is my third copy of this book as I've had to gift the other two to close friends who've experienced this joy on special occasions. I should just buy them in bulk! Meanwhile, the recipes are easy to follow and always bring such pleasure for my guests at home, or in my travels.
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on May 23, 2010
The recipe for bisque is perfection. I used sauce instead canned whole tomatoes and even threw in a few left over bloody mary aspics so they wouldn't go to waste in the restaurant I work in. As a chef I look to other chefs for inspiration and I highly recommend this book. The rosemary dijon dressing is also fantastic! I still have many recipes left to try!
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on February 19, 2012
What a beautiful book! I was so taken, I bought additional ones for Christmas gifts. The photography is beautiful, and the recipes
so enticing but well within the range of a home cook and with most ingredients (if not all) available at your average chain grocery.
Ms. Spicer is such a delight its easy to see why she is a top Chef in a city known for its food - New Orleans. You can't go wrong. And, if you ever find yourself in this intriguing city, visit her restaurant, Bayona, you will be equally delighted.
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on November 28, 2007
To give you an idea of the impact one meal can have on a person, my husband and I almost named our first child "Bayona". I have been waiting with baited breath for this cookbook! It's finally here! I have lived in (San Francisco, Paris) and dined in (same and then some) some of the finest restaurants in the world, and none ever came close to Bayona. I can't quite explain it, but it was somehow the most "perfect" experience. The flavors, textures, and even the portions...left us perfectly fulfilled....not hungry but not uncomfortably full. Divine is the only word I can come up with. My husband was fortunate enough to visit New Orleans on several occassions on business and would call me each time he was there enjoying every morsel (torture, of course, though he didn't mean it) I agree with a previous reviewer, and I too compare every restaurant with Bayona. None can ever live up to it's perfection. Everyone we've ever steered toward Bayona's agrees. Susan Spicer's recipes are perfection.
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