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Emeril's Potluck: Comfort Food with a Kicked-Up Attitude Hardcover – October 12, 2004

4 out of 5 stars 36 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Emeril Lagasse needs no introduction. TV chef par excellence, and author of eight other cookbooks, he's become something of a one-man industry. Emeril's Potluck, concerned with "comfort food with a kicked-up attitude," follows the MO of his other books--easy, attractive recipes (in this case 150-plus of them) presented in a voce that will be reassuring to some, while all-too-familiar to others. If Potluck seems even more mechanically formulaic than the other books, it nonetheless contains many valuable recipes for a full range of dishes and drinks. Among these, Cajun Quiche, Oven-Poached Salmon with a Pink Grapefruit and Tarragon Sauce, and Slow-Cooked Pork Roast with Barbecue Sauce are representative and worthy. The drink section shouldn't be overlooked and contains recipes for the likes of Milk Shakes for grownups, which include kalúa, and the nonalcoholic mango lassai. Two casserole chapters offer easy treats like Mexican Breakfast Casserole and Risotto and Mushroom Casserole. Desserts like Deep-Dish Banana Pudding with Chocolate Sauce are satisfyingly no-frills. The guiding--perhaps, nominal--idea is that the dishes are perfect for gatherings, picnics, and tailgate parties, but they're also suitable for everyday enjoyment. Readers should also note that many of the recipes require Emeril's food products--for which online sources are given, but no descriptions. --Arthur Boehm

From Publishers Weekly

The 10th addition to the Emeril Lagasse cookbook franchise is as uneven as a real potluck dinner: the occasional delicious dish is lost amid all too familiar and unsurprising foods. Admirers will welcome the energetic voice of their favorite TV chef as he "bams!" his way through homey dishes such as Chicken Jambalaya, Macaroni with Four Cheeses, and Tuna Tetrazzini. But it's hard to find anything new, as Emeril retreads ground covered in his earlier books on Louisiana cuisine, party food and cooking for holidays. The "potluck" theme doesn't succeed in tying the book together: though casserole dishes such as Beef Stroganoff and Emerilized Green Beans are ideal potluck offerings, some of the book's most interesting recipes, such as Oysters Rockefeller Soup, Osso Buco with Orzo Risotto, and Olive-Stuffed Leg of Lamb, would be a stretch, especially since there isn't much guidance in helping cooks match such dishes to events. The book's attractive layout and clear instructions are geared to beginners, though there are lapses (a piecrust recipe offers no tips on how to roll out dough; the deviled egg section doesn't even hint how long to hard-boil an egg); and a few recipes, such as Antipasto Pasta Salad, aren't worthy of a chef of Emeril's caliber.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow Cookbooks (October 12, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0688164315
  • ISBN-13: 978-0688164317
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 1.1 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #720,281 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Emeril Lagasse is the chef-proprietor of 12 restaurants across the country. He has received numerous Best Restaurant, Best Chef, and Best Service awards, and in 2013 received the Humanitarian of the Year Award from the James Beard Foundation for his work through the Emeril Lagasse Foundation, which supports children's educational programs. The author of 18 cookbooks, his phenomenally successful Food Network show Emeril Live! launched a new era in culinary TV. In 2014, Lagasse participated in his third consecutive season as a main guest chef on Bravo's hit food series, "Top Chef," and joined TNT as co-host for their cooking series, On the Menu. Most recently, "Emeril's Florida" entered its third season in January 2015 on the Cooking Channel. Born and raised in Fall River, Massachusetts, he is a graduate of Johnson & Wales.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book contains a considerable number of tasty recipes of the southern comfort food variety. My one complaint about this book is the quantity of recipes that calls for Emeril's proprietary products such as Emeril's Original Essenence, Emeril's Southwest Essence, etc. Now here's the kicker: I went to the web site that contains a good number of Emeril's recipes and found among the various recipes there the recipes for these proprietary "Essences." So I now have taped in my own cookbook the recipes for Original Essence, Creole Essence, Soutwest Essence, etc. These steps, however, should not have been necessary. This cookbook should have contained all these recipes right off the bat.
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Format: Hardcover
I've always hated potluck occasions because I never knew what to bring. I've been to too many such occasions where the menu ended up being mostly deserts. So being a fan of Emeril's, I decided to give this book a try, and man, I'm glad I did. Everything I've made from it has been wonderful and well-praised. My husband's and my favorite recipe has to be the antipasto pasta salad. It whips up quick, so we often eat it for dinner. I spent several hours on Christmas Eve putting together a Breakfast caserolle for Christmas morning, and despite the prep time, I was still glad I made it because it was wonderful, and I learned to do something new.

Some reviewers might have a problem with Emeril using his spice blends in his recipes, but I find that a rather ridiculous conceit on their part. He developed these recipes, he uses these spice-blends in his cooking often, and it shouldn't come as a surprise to the buyer that they may appear in his books.

Anyway, this is my most frequently used cookbook and I can't recommend it highly enough.
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Format: Hardcover
He always wants to help those who like food and cooking and want to kick it up notches. He provides us foodies with an excellent source for that dish one wants to contribute to a feast of cuisine with family, friends and dining functions.

There is a considerable variety of all the components of a great potluck feast: drinks, appetizers, salads, soups, casseroles, gumbos, sides, breads, desserts. There is nice section are starters like stocks and mayonnaise,etc., plus sources and restaurants.

As he relates it so well, food is about sharing and so Emeril shares some of his favorites here in the category of what he calls: comfort food kicked up as Emeril does. Many he just gives us classics and others he kicks up. Sampling the several hundred of recipes yield all kinds of ones to try and share: Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie; Oysters Rockefeller Soup; Kicked-Up Spinach and Artichoke Dip; Milk Shakes For Grown Ups; Courtney's Kicked-Up Fiesta Loaf; Paul's Make the Whole Crew Happy Sausage Meatballs with Red Gravy; Chicken Chili With Cornbread Topping; Cowboy Chicken Casserole; Retro Ambrosia.

There is something great for everyone's tastes and culinary skills to make and serve and share at all kinds of eating events. This is great potluck collection, not difficult at all in techniques or ingredients. Many will be blessed using this.
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Format: Hardcover
Reading this cookbook from cover to cover was a pleasure. It reads like a family history. For any Emeril fan, his descriptions and tips read just as he talks. As to be expected, he also uses onions, bell pepper, and garlic in nearly all his recipes. Many of these we have seen before in various cookbooks, but Emeril updates them, adding his own flair, thus making the new versions seem fresh.

What works for me about this particular cookbook:

*All the handy tips that are given about various food items

*If an item is difficult to find, a substitute is given - and there aren't many of these.

*The majority of the recipes are ones that can be used in my own kitchen

*All seasons are covered

What doesn't work for me is one thing only. As much as I like Emeril, I would really have liked to have seen more pictures of the finished dishes rather than all of them be him.

As a collector of cookbooks, this is my first one by Emeril, but it certainly won't be my last! Great job.
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Format: Hardcover
This is one of my all time favorite cookbooks, I am an avid cookbook collector and I don't make too many recipes more than once. This book is wonderful, I use it over and over again ( I have a large family). I make everything ahead of time, and get the most compliments from these recipes...the macaroni and four cheeses, spinach and artichole dip and the brisket are some of my favorites. I cannot say enought about this wonderful book!!!
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Format: Hardcover
I'm a little confused by some of the lesser comments about Emeril's Potluck cookbook. I find it to be a treasure of really wonderful, delicious, intriguing, and downright comforting fare. I've cooked from my book many times and each recipe has turned out better than expected. Beef Stroganoff anyone?

Sure, Emeril is known for his long ingredients list and even longer instructions, but I have yet to make ANY of Emeril's recipes that hasn't delivered on taste and enjoyment in a big way and been worth the effort. He never disappoints. And I have no problem using his brand products - the store bought spice blends are excellent, but with a little ingenuity, can be made at home by simply searching for the recipes online.

These are not low calorie recipes, but for the times when nothing less than a show-stopping dish is required, THIS is a true go-to book!
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