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Essential Cuisine Hardcover – March 1, 2002

13 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Ici La Pr; 1st edition (March 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1931605076
  • ISBN-13: 978-1931605076
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 8.8 x 11.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #270,632 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By CarolinaZ on February 19, 2010
Format: Hardcover
This book as well as his DVD are incredible as others have noted. The concepts and artistry he incorporates into his dishes are mind-blowing. But if you can navigate it, buy the english-language version of this book on the Amazon.fr (French) website. The price, even with the exchange rate, is less than half the price shown here.
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24 of 28 people found the following review helpful By jumpy1 on September 18, 2002
Format: Hardcover
This man loves his cuisine and loves nature. The photos are simple and stylish but not contrived. There are also many well executed photos of the countryside in the back. The directions are as simple as if you are standing next to a cook who is explaining things to you as they cook. I can't help feeling his intense emotional love of working with food as I read and look through this book. Frankly, it makes the current popular chefs and cooking show hosts look like ... Sorry -- but I'm a chef, and books like this are hard to find.
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25 of 32 people found the following review helpful By B. Marold HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on October 22, 2004
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
`Essential Cuisine', nominally written by Michelin starred French chef Michel Bras and his brother, Sebastian, is translated from the French and is published by a very small house, `ici la Press' that I guess specializes in distributing such French material transplanted to these shores.

Like an earlier book `A Chef in Provence' by Edouard Loubet, this book is the perfect example of a foodie's coffee table decoration which will very likely never see the inside of a kitchen or suffer an olive oil stained fingerprint on any of its especially glossy pages. The main difference between Loubert and Bras' efforts are that Bras and company wastes less page space on nice pictures of Provencal gardens, hill, forests, and wildflowers among the recipes. The gallery of pretty pictures is relegated to the back of the book. This is little solace for the $50 price tag for highly impractical recipes.

This does not mean this is a bad book. It only means that it would be a real shame for someone to buy this book under a mistaken idea about its contents. If cookbooks were mapped to magazines on building, carpentry, crafts, and hobbies, Julia Child's `Mastering the Art of French Cooking' would become `Fine Woodworking', Tony Bourdain's `Les Halles Cookbook' would become `Handyman', and Michel Bras' `Essential Cooking' would become `Architectural Digest'. The first two are consulted for serious ideas on projects that an amateur can do at home. The latter is browsed for the pictures and the romance of very expensive venues.

The title, `Essential Cooking' gives the impression of being about basics. The book is about as far removed from being about basics as you can imagine.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By TC on February 14, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My husband is a chef and I purchased this as a gift for him. He loves it. This book is a muse not a technical cookbook for a foodie or average cook. Amazing photography to inspire.
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11 of 16 people found the following review helpful By gavin bradley on April 29, 2002
Format: Hardcover
if you're a disciple of charlie trotter, it's time you made the pilgrimage to michel bras. they both seem to have been born with very similar genes - their food derives from nature, from the seasons and from the region, and from a passion for perfection that borders on the insane. although this book may not be as 'handsome' as charlies', it's still divine in it's execution. the photography is superb and a very accurate representation of the way the food is presented at the restaurant. the recipes are crystal clear, and the food is, weirdly, as easy to create as charlie trotters. if you love honest but stylish food, you'll love this honest and stylish book. i've been waiting patiently for m.bras to write a book since i first discovered him, and i was not disappointed.
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Format: Hardcover
Beautiful. Absolutely incredible book. If you buy it just for the photography alone, it's worth it. It's not a "cookbook." These are not recipes for the home cook to attempt, so those who give negative reviews based on vagueness of the recipes. It's a chef's book. Written by someone who is not concerned with being accessible to the everyday cook. And not in a negative way. The book conveys Bras' romance with food and his home region in a really beautiful way, so for that reason alone, it's a worthwhile purchase for the food lover. The recipes are designed for someone with high degree of technical knowledge. If you don't have that, then it's best to enjoy the photos and consider it a textbook of flavor and ingredient combinations.
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By Jeffrey Stoneberger on February 22, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Simply the best and most artistic culinary publication ever produced. The entire book is a study in not only cooking technique, but in light, color, and the art of it all. The Bras brothers are quite possibly two of the most brilliant chefs to have ever emerged from France. In the mornings at the locations in Japan and France you can see the chefs foraging for new ingredients and that is when you know this chef has truly created art on a plate. Now if only he would let me in his kitchen...lol. If you can find a copy, buy it immediately.
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