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The Big Fat Duck Cookbook is the biggest (10 pounds with box), the most expensive ($250) and the most flamboyant (four brightly colored silk marker ribbons, uncountable full-page color illustrations and gatefolds, mainly caricatures of Mr. Blumenthal gliding through a dreamland of foods) cookbook in a bumper year. But like its author, who turns out to be a clear and even affecting writer, there is gravity holding the rocket in orbit. In the back, you will find deadly serious essays on such matters as the effect of heat on meat protein or "ice cream science," by himself and his entourage of university food scientists along with detailed rundowns on new kitchen tools such as refractometers. But all of this is stagesetting and infrastructure for the recipes with the wacko names, the sci-fi techniques and the eureka tastes and flavors... Makes you want to call Bray immediately to get a table at the earliest opportunity, which is two months from now. Meanwhile, there's the book. (Wall Street Journal)
The Big Fat Duck Cookbook is itself a work of art, combing a luxurious package with striking page layouts and artwork. Its recipes are almost the least of its appeal: Blumenthal's accompanying essays are the meat of the text and make for a fascinating 500 pages of reading. (Metroland (Albany, NY))
I have never been so captivated, visually, by a cookbook (my own books excluded, of course), primarily by the illustrations, the playfulness of them, the exuberance of spirit they convey. A brilliant move to include these. The food photography is stunning, I think, because it's so big and Blumenthal's food is so dramatic... Huge congratulations to Blumenthal and his team for this over the top, way over the top, effort. (Michael Ruhlman)
Chef Heston Blumenthal has been described as a culinary alchemist for his innovative style of cuisine. His work researches the molecular compounds of dishes so as to enable a greater understanding of taste and flavor. His restaurant The Fat Duck, in Bray, Berkshire, was awarded three Michelin stars in 2004, and voted the Best Restaurant in the World by an international panel of 500 culinary experts in Restaurant Magazine's list of the World's Best Restaurants 2005. Heston Blumenthal lives in Berkshire with his wife and three children.
Brilliant book, but a little big (and fat) for kitchen use. Beautifully produced, the book feels rich and the contents will boost your IQ by at least 5 points.Published 4 months ago by J. Hutchins
Heston Blumenthal is a genius and this cookbook is brilliant because it not only shares beautiful, exciting food recipes, but also the thought process behind them. Read morePublished 8 months ago by J. Jonak
Great book, definitely not for the home cook. One of my all time favoritesPublished 14 months ago by chefbrady12
A little disappointed that the interior production values did not match the packaging which was exceptional - perhaps this was the marketing tool employed by the publisher. Read morePublished 19 months ago by carol jarvis
The book was a little pricey, but well worth it. I brought it as a gift and the receiver was blown away. Read morePublished 21 months ago by Phuong Tran
Wanted to read this but sceptical about spending so much in this day and age on a book. Took the plunge and have to say would not go back. Read morePublished on November 12, 2012 by Aaron
This book isn't so much a collection of techniques and meals as it is an artistically amazing document that describes with humility, humor and enlightened personal insights the... Read morePublished on December 3, 2011 by JohnnyA
As many other reviewers have noted, this is not a typical recipe book. Chances are you'll never cook anything from it, or at least not without a lot of modification. Read morePublished on November 22, 2011 by JohnD