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French Bistro: Seasonal Recipes Hardcover – February 7, 2012


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 216 pages
  • Publisher: Flammarion (February 7, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 2080200887
  • ISBN-13: 978-2080200884
  • Product Dimensions: 9.7 x 7.8 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #485,906 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Beautiful and beautifully conceived." ~France Magazine

“If you’ve never had the pleasure of being there – and I think it’s always a pleasure – then this new book, French Bistro: Seasonal Recipes, will make you feel as though you’re there. Yes, yes, I know that reading about a restaurant and cooking its recipes is not the same as really being there, but hey, it’s not bad. Not bad at all. Especially when the book is as good – and as evocative – as this one.” ~Dorie Greenspan

About the Author

Bertrand Auboyneau is owner of Bistrot Paul Bert in Paris. François Simon is a food critic for Le Figaro. Christian Sarramon is a lifestyle photographer.

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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It makes a wonderful coffee table book.
T. R. Hall
This is the traditional food of the classic bistro, which is celebrated in this magnificent new book.
William R. Franklin
Because if you want to indulge in armchair travel fantasy, this is a great book.
Esther Schindler

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By William R. Franklin VINE VOICE on April 21, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Like most sensible people, when I'm hungry, I do not dream of the elements of what has been ridiculously termed "molecular gastronomy". My mind is not filled with images of spheres of polymerised squid ink, suspended in lavender foam and resting in a pool of raw rabbit brains and freeze dried tree moss. (Sorry Ferran.) Instead, I crave a thick veal chop accompanied by truffled pureed potatoes or a succulent roast chicken with crisp pommes frites or maybe just a simple boeuf bourguignon. This is the traditional food of the classic bistro, which is celebrated in this magnificent new book.

The recipes here will not awe or astonish you. And that is precisely the point. The intent is to create simple, wonderful food rather than feats of technical wizardry.

The text is also a joy, explaining the essential elements of the bistro - such as the chef (of course), the servers, the décor and even the aromas. A good bistro will always welcome guests with the scintillating scents of fresh cooked food, conspicuously absent in more "refined" establishments.

A excellent collection of photographs of the wonderful dishes and interiors of the author's own bistro as well as a number of other Parisian favourites provide a wonderful tour from which you will leave inspired and hungry.
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21 of 26 people found the following review helpful By George Erdosh on February 10, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Should you be looking for a new cookbook, French Bistro is only mediocre at best. But as an outstanding coffee table and reading book, this certainly excels. The full-page photo illustrations are magnificent and chances are you are eyes are going to linger over each. The writing is equally superb; in fact, I suggest prolonging the pleasure of reading over days and weeks, taking small nibbles at a time. The recipes are good, mostly for accomplished cooks. For many you will be shopping around for some time to find ingredients (e.g. piquillo peppers, Ukrainians heirloom tomatoes or gelatin sheets). In many recipes the authors insist on weighing but the average home cook will have difficulty with 7 oz egg yolks or 4½ oz egg whites.

Yet this book is so intriguing that some of you may consider a reservation to Paris to visit the elegant, upscale bistro Paul Bert (take a stack of Euros). Suggested wine pairing will also be a problem unless you live in Paris. Little tidbits under Dash of Advice are great. Inconveniently for the reader, many page numbers are missing (aesthetic reasons?). Reading this book, you feel your presence in a Paris bistro. (As appears in Portland Book Review.)
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on April 5, 2012
Format: Hardcover
I could only give this book four stars for the total effort, which is mainly for the photos and the information on the various Parisian bistros. But unfortunately this book suffers from a problem that a number of cookbooks these days do: ingredients that are next-to-impossible to find.

Now, I'm currently living in Portland, Oregon, which many people consider to be a "foodie" city. Maybe in regards to the restaurants, but esoteric grocery shopping - no. Like squab, sweetbreads, pheasant, rabbit, duck breast? Good luck finding them here. Maybe the last two, but I've seen them for $32 and $16 respectively. I'd love to cook them, but, forget-about-it at those prices. Sure, I could special order them - if I wanted 20 pound quantities of each. But I don't have enough freezer space.

Undoubtedly the situation here is likely everywhere in the US except bigger cities like New York, Chicago, LA, San Francisco. Since this cookbook is likely aimed at the UK also, good luck finding ingredients there, too. I spent six months there last year and about the only place you can find the stuff I listed before is in the London markets. (Although I was lucky to score poussin at Waitrose.)

All my gripes aside, this is a worthwhile book and if you've eaten at any of the restaurants (I have), it's a nice souvenir of Parisian bistros. I must give credit to the author for the hard work he's done over the years to establish his restaurants and to keep alive the tradition of the French bistro. Five stars to Bertrand Auboyneau for that!
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Format: Hardcover
I'm planning a vacation in France this summer, so I've been getting myself into the mood. Novels that take place in France, guidebooks, the Marling Menu-Master for France, and -- what else for a foodie? -- lots of restaurant reviews. So on my last foray through the library, I found this cookbook, thinking I'd do a bit more French cooking. I probably won't cook any of the 50-or-so recipes from French Bistro: Seasonal Recipes, but it doesn't bother me in the least. Because this book is more about bistro ambiance than it is about "What to make for dinner tonight."

Instead, what you get are 200 pages of text about the essence of a French bistro -- all the elements from the owner to the wine list -- accompanied by _gorgeous_ photos of 14 bistros and delicious food. The writing draws you in, reminding you why Paris is such a foodie destination and celebrating what a bistro offers: "It is a cuisine free of complexes, making a meal of offal or turning out value-for-money dishes from forgotten or under-valued cuts of meat -- or even leftovers, like the Parmentier. The bistro is opportunistic, making the most of seasonal produce and market stands." But it is the photos that make me wriggle like a happy puppy: chalkboards listing today's specials, a basket of truffles, photos of the completed dishes. I wallow in the notion of a resource listing that includes a "salted herring specialist." It brings me wholly into the mood to rush to Paris _right now_ and eat these dishes.
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