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52 of 52 people found the following review helpful
on November 18, 1999
Format: Hardcover
I've had this book for nearly a year now, and am not disappointed in
the least. I've made several of the dishes in this book, as well as
dishes from his show...and all have turned
out to be delicious. Try the Delmonico Chicken or Shrimp Creole. The
dishes take time and preparation, and some take practice and will be
better the second time you make it, but they are excellent. One
downside is that, for me in the Midwest, a lot of the fish/shellfish
ingredients aren't readily available.
I wholeheartedly recommend
this book for the cooks out there who are adventurous and willing to
experiment. You will enjoy it. Those who are more at home with
macaroni and cheese from a box, stay away.
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91 of 96 people found the following review helpful
on August 11, 1999
Format: Hardcover
I have just recently become a fan of Emeril's. I was not working for a few months and accidently surfed to the Food Network. Eventually, I saw Emeril Live. His show made me so hungry and made my mouth drool! I purchased two of his books: Emeril's TV Dinners and Louisiana Real & Rustic. I love them both. A few of the reviews I read criticize his use of heavy cream, butter, etc. But most people realize you have to use recipes like those in moderation. Most people don't eat like that every day. I like light cuisine, but I also like REAL GOOD food, too.
I have enjoyed cooking since I was 12, and I find it impressive that Emeril will give up his secrets. I have tried many of his recipes in both books, and none have disappointed me. Everything has come out delicious and very tasty.
As far as the so-called "commercialism" of the book, I believe this was done for the people who genuinely are fans of Emeril. I got a kick out of seeing the pictures that are behind the scenes. I can see why people who wouldn't know too much about him would think it was "too much".
Cooking is my hobby, as well as collecting cookbooks. I have a whole double bookcase of cookbooks, and I am proud to have Emeril's TV Dinners in it. I plan on collecting all his books.
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75 of 82 people found the following review helpful
on November 29, 1999
Format: Hardcover
I have followed Emeril for quite awhile now. A couple of years ago I bought Real and Rustic to try out his recipes, becuse they all looked so good. There were some accuracy problems with the quantities, but by and large the recipes turned out okay. I bought this book thinking it would provide newer recipes. Instead, a lot of them are just updated reprints of recipes that he has been using for years. The book also is like a coffe table book, because it is mainly pictures of him on his set. Save your money. If you want to see Emeril, turn on the TV. If you want the recipes, by one of his older books.
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45 of 50 people found the following review helpful
on March 30, 2000
Format: Hardcover
The idea behind this book is a nice commercial packaging ofEMERIl, a
fan book, and recipes. It's not a culinary institution textbook with
rigid rules and exact measurements, it's just like the TV SHOW, get
it? If you don't like the show, don't buy the book.
I bought the
book because I'm an OK cook, but I want to get better, I love Emeril's
approach to cooking, his personality on TV and the personable nature
of his restaurants. The book is designed to be a collection of the
better tapings from his show and the recipes that made the shows
click. How can you present a book about a TV SHOW and not have
pictures? .... Emeril is
correct on one thing, "It ain't rocket science" but he
forgot to remind people to use common sense in the kitchen. I highly
recommend this book if you are a fan of the show and want some recipes
and some background information on Emeril. Remember the title of the
book, it is designed to be just like any of the PBS companion books to
the shows with the same titles. It is a fun book, the recipes do work,
they do allow for improv work, modification, embellishments and they
will make you happy! END
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
Format: Hardcover
I think Emeril is a hoot; we use the term "Kick it up a notch" at home for just about anything and get a real laugh every time we say it. I think Emeril Lagasse makes it clear that cooking is fun, an art and a way to express yourself.
He doesn't give cup and tablespoon amounts on his show when he cooks, so this book is useful to see what might go into some of the dishes he's created. So you get his biscuit recipe here, where measurements are critical to success. And are they nice and light! This is now my favorite biscuit recipe because I never could get them fluffy rather than heavy and flakey.
You do have to read these recipes carefully; the goat cheese and leek cake attracted me because I love both these ingredients. However, it's listed as vegetarian but contains a LOT of bacon! Hahaha! Since when are pigs vegetables? (there are vegetarian substitutes for bacon, but I'll bet Emeril wouldn't touch them with a 10-foot pepper grinder!)
There's plenty of his unique wit in the book, so it's fun to read. This is not most useful cookbook I own, but for a few recipes, it is unsurpassed ....
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on April 23, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Others have described the 'cult' of Emeril and I suppose I'm in it because I do like him on TV. The book lacks for me for a couple of reasons. First the positives - I liked the ongoing commentary throughout the book by Emeril. I think food is enhanced by the love people have for it, and that made me want to make the recipes. Second, most of the recipes look fairly good. The negatives - I made 3 recipes in the last 8 days and I was unhappy with all of them for various reasons. Now, I know I'm not Emeril, and I shouldn't expect my food to be restaurant quality - and that's not my beef. I realized that several of his recipes lacked specifics that would actually be required to correctly know how to make something. I also realized that I thought, in all 3 of the things i made, that some of the quantities were way off. Perhaps I can't make the food as well as Emeril, but using the amount of cheese he recommends in one recipe ends up with a dish that is overwhelmed by it, to the detriment of some great ingredients. When I prepared my cheese I thought it looked like too much, but I also figured I would go ahead and do it his way so that I could see if I was being timid. I was not.
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
on May 16, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I think that this is the weak link in the series of books that Emeril has put out. It's great that he wants to share with all of his fans the behind the scenes pics of his show. However, the quality of the recipes suffers because of it. There are just too many pictures and not enough food. I felt cheated after I spent some time digging through it. I still love Emeril, but I really was dissappointed with the results of this book. It's just not worth the money spent.
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26 of 31 people found the following review helpful
on February 2, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I love cooking. It is a true hobby for me. Nothing is more fun than getting together a few friends and putting on a dinner party. As a result, I have bought a lot of cookbooks. Knowing this, some friends have given me some of Emerils books. I have seen him on TV, but never really caught on to what was so special about him. I have tried his recipes from his books. some have turned out okay, but none were 'out of this world'. What I have found is that Emeril does like to have fun with his cooking. That is great. But I have to disagree that his cooking 'aint rocket science here'. His recipes can be very time consuming and expensive. They are not for the average or novice cook. For people who love cooking, I would recommend other cookbooks that have easier to follow recipes, more pictures of the food itself, and far less self-promotion.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on October 21, 1998
Format: Hardcover
Cool b&w pix (look a bit like a Calvin Klein ad) and good coverage of basic cooking techniques, along w/ Emeril's trademark of de-mystifying 'fancy cooking terms' make this book a great read (and a small window into his life) for his many fans. There's a wide variety of recipes, mostly basic, simple to do but heavy on the 'wow' factor for novice cooks. Emeril's great strengths include his strong, accessible personality and his ability to instill confidence, and both of these come through strongly. But if you're looking for fancy dishes or nifty new techniques with really innovative presentations, this is not the book for you. Buy this book for 2 reasons: either you are into the Cult of Emeril and just can't get enough of the guy on TV, or you are new to cooking (or never learned the basics) and want an easy & painless way to learn them. Overall, it was light entertainment, with the (out-of-focus) pictures of Emeril & Co. overwhelming the recipes.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on January 2, 1999
Format: Hardcover
I have read and appreciate evaulations of this book on both sides of the spectrum--either people LOVE Emeril and this book or they HATE it. I have to say I don't love or hate it. Emeril is definately a chef in his own right, and there is nothing wrong with the reciepes here. However, you would not want to cook like this everyday. The use of heavy cream, butter and cheese in everything is just not a healthy way to live. Emeril does have his own style that comes through on his TV shows as well as this book. He is a GREAT entertainer, and he is very charismatic. I enjoy his show very much, and liked the book somewhat also. However, I would really like to see more explanation of the "whys" and "hows" of cooking. Even though I have cooked professionally for some years, there is still a lot that I don't know that I'm sure he does--and wish he would be more detailed and share more of his knowledge. I would also like to see more food here, and less pictures or promotions. It is very commercialized. I agree that Emeril is not and never will be one of the truly great cooking teachers, such as Julia Child, but he does allow a certain group of people who need a little "push" of confidance to start cooking. I recommend his fried chicken receipe, because it is a builder receipe that one can use to make many variations with--I wish he would have made this point in the book. People who are new to cooking will not like this book, as it does lack the wisdom and insights of a more detailed work like the Better Homes and Gardens cook book (though it dosen't entertain and is not fun to use) or certainly one of Julia Child's masterpieces, which as both insightful and fun to use. This is not his best book by any means, but if you enjoy his show and just LOVE his ability to entertain and most importantly to HAVE FUN in the kitchen. What he lacks in technique and insight is compensated for with his wonderful charisma, charm , and style.
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