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Happy in the Kitchen Hardcover – August 30, 2006
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To pull off his particular sleight-of-hand, Richard has devised novel techniques--like using plastic film to shape and poach food, and gelatin to bind fatlessly--that all cooks should know about. Whether readers will tackle the often-exacting recipes will depend on their willingness to engage in kitchen workouts that also regularly require special equipment like a Japanese mandoline and electric meat slicer. Though there are a number of simpler, homier recipes like Tomato Soup with Fresh Mozzarella and Thyme-Glazed Baby Back Ribs--and the formulas themselves couldn't be more lucid--this handsome book will probably be best appreciated as an artful record of a great and wonderfully playful cooking intelligence. Replete with stunning photos, used generously to illustrate techniques, it's hard to imagine any serious cook who wouldn't want to join Richard, dig in, and learn. --Arthur Boehm
From Publishers Weekly
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Top Customer Reviews
This is as if a master chef, genie like, comes to your home and dispensed countless pearls of cookery knowledge..elevating a simple recipe to one that has you say "Oh my Gawd, why didn't I think of that...it's SO good".
He tells how to get certain foods "crunchy" to excite the experiences of taste..making vegetables and meats alike crunchy with flavor, yet not overdoing it. At the same time, he tells how to heat vegetables so they are soft and tasty, without overdoing it and giving that overcooked taste to them. Try his All-Crust Potato Gratin to see.
He "works" a vegetable to bring out it's best...with carrots, he braises whole carrots in chicken stock and orange juice, to give body, brightness and intense flavor, then finished off with touches of unusual spice combinations, and sprinkles the end product with orange zest. Heck, outside of glazing carrots, or eating baby ones raw, I didn't realize the fun I could have with the crispy critters. And onions..what magic he conjures up with cooked onions, as their soft sweetness, sometimes heightened with caramelization, are used as stuffed shells, a pasta-less pasta, a tart, and as a delicious component of a burger!
Have you read about trendy sous-vide cooking and the $2000 thermal circulator set-ups? Get a Foodsaver* to vacuum pack your food in plastic bags, or just wrap it in Saran-wrap* or other cellophane to keep in the flavors while cooking it at ~ 160 F. A steady burner/range, thermometer and some ice cubes will get you through most any sous-vide recipe in your home.Read more ›
Mentioning Christmas reminds us that Monsieur Richard looks remarkably like old St. Nick himself, and this book is simply chocked full of goodies for the adventuresome chef. I immediately place this among the few exceptional books by leading American restaurant chefs, such as Thomas Keller's `The French Laundry Cookbook', Judy Rodgers' `The Zuni Café Cookbook', Eric Ripert's `A Return to Cooking' and Paul Bertolli's `Cooking by Hand'. I've read several `good' restaurant books, all with their fair share of useful recipes for the home kitchen. But, I've also read many restaurant cookbooks which have very little value for the average home cook, even for the serious amateur cook, since they teach relatively little which adds to our basic understanding of cooking and less to our arsenal of useful techniques. Monsieur Richard does all of these things, and he does them well.
I may even go so far as to say that Michel Richard may be America's answer to Spain's inventive Ferran Adria, if it were not for the equally inventive Thomas Keller. The thing is, however, that Richard has done better than Keller of communicating his techniques to us mere mortals in the kitchen. At the very least, he has done a much better job (witness the title of the book) of communicating the joy of inventive cooking in the kitchen.Read more ›
interesting and not so complicated, that just reading them makes you want to run right out and get the ingrediants to try them. You can tell from reading the book that Chef Michel Richard loves cooking and his enthusiasm
is infectious! His anecdotes and stories are very funny and you can see he has a great sense of humor which come out in his recipes. I have over 700 cookbooks, but this is one I actually use, especially for inspiration and some new techniques that the chef teaches in this fab cookbook.
The photos are stunning also.
I have attended culinary school, and am starting my first restaurant job on Monday... so while I am not a home cook per se... this book is very inspirational and very doable for the earnest and experienced home cook.
A word about the photograpy: Gorgeous.
Buy this cookbook, as it is definately one of the years, if not past five years best. You will treasure it.
Start this book from the beginning --I jumped to the recipes before reading through the book and was quickly overwhelmed. A few days later, I started at page one and was quickly enchanted by the author and his philosophy. Food at its best is a sensual pleasure--an aromatic merger of taste, texture, temperature and appearance. When fully engaged, the craft of cooking raises eating to an art.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Absolutely love this book. Even more pleased to get a confirmation from the seller that it is in fact a signed copy from the renowned chef. Read morePublished 22 months ago by Mary Ann Kuizon
This book has very delicious recipes
They are detailed and easy to follow
The recipes are many times very complicated and aimed more to the professional cook
Techniques! Really impressed with this book. Only to page 48 and already planning on making lots of Richard's recipes. Just sent a copy to a friend.Published on July 15, 2012 by J. Jacobs
I love this book. Even when my spiralized potatoes break apart, the recipe takes all day, or I get tired of chopping I still love this book. Read morePublished on October 15, 2011 by vegan chef
As someone who's lucky enough to have eaten in Michel's flagship restaurant Citronelle, and eats regularly at his bistro Central Michel Richard, I can tell you that this is pretty... Read morePublished on December 11, 2010 by Will Y
If you love to cook, watch cooking shows, or collect cookbooks, this book is a must have. I really wish I could give this book more than five stars because it deserves to be... Read morePublished on August 17, 2009 by R. Fields
This book makes you feel as the title "Happy in the Kitchen"!! Great ideas, great picture, beautiful recipes! Totally recommend it!!Published on July 27, 2009 by Caro Diaz