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The Complete Robuchon Hardcover

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 832 pages
  • Publisher: Knopf; 1 edition (November 4, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307267199
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307267191
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 7.5 x 1.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #74,639 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Robuchon might be a three Michelin-starred chef-owner of an empire of restaurants, but in this back-to-basics compendium of classic French recipes, he shows that he still knows how to cook at home. He also knows how to teach: though the book has no illustration and his instructions tend to be terse, a cook with basic skills should make great progress just by cooking through the book's pages, from stock to meats and fish, every kind of vegetable and pastries. Robuchon features each ingredient (e.g., turbot or cauliflower) or food category (e.g., cold cream soups or fruit-based desserts) in several treatments to show its versatility, building on his introductory tips for sections and certain recipes. Most dishes are as French as can be, including worldwide standbys like sole meunière and beef bourguignon and regional treasures like John Dory with almonds and tomato confit or Hare Royale. But reflecting the passage of time and the influx of immigrants into France, Robuchon also includes some unusual recipes such as Tunisian-inspired langoustines in brik packets with basil. Cooking from this book certainly makes the full breadth of refined French cooking seem more within reach for the nonprofessional. (Nov.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Superchef Robuchon has fashioned a massive record of his cuisine that will appeal to fellow chefs and to highly skilled amateurs. His worldwide empire of acclaimed restaurants has brought him fame and established him as one of the leading exponents of contemporary French gastronomy. As this cookbook testifies, Robuchon adheres to current taste with lightness and an emphasis on superior, fresh, and seasonal ingredients. He keeps sauces on his dishes simple, not eschewing flour to thicken sauces but using such thickeners with restraint. Few unusual ingredients appear, the most exotic being pineapple. He loves to work with game, especially birds such as partridge and pheasant. Chefs replicating recipes for meat cookery will need close cooperation from a skilled and accessible butcher. Robuchon’s many ways of preparing potatoes offer enough familiarity to home cooks to encourage them to step up to the challenge of the master’s recipes. --Mark Knoblauch

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Customer Reviews

Learn from the best Chef in the world Joel Robuchon.
Tamela J. Wolff
Split into sections after a great introduction and overview of cooking techniques and kitchen equipment.
I. Darren
It appears that as book was translated from the French text.
Ralph B. Wood

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

80 of 82 people found the following review helpful By James Ellsworth VINE VOICE on November 5, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My grandfather had a restaurant and cooked Sunday dinners for our family. As soon as I was "on my own" I began to cook, relying on James Beard, Julia Child's "Mastering..." and the great French Chef and New York Times columnist Pierre Franey. Then I discovered "Simply French", Patricia Wells classic presentation of "the cuisine of Joel Robuchon" to English-speaking audiences. That book has some fantastic recipes and I still use it often. I have been looking forward to meeting this latest addition to the Robuchon oeuvre.

First, the book is not a "coffee table" beautiful presentation such as Patricia Wells created. There are no photographs or illustrations. Second, we will not learn any Robuchon "secrets" for making fabulous foods. In the early going the recipes do not show anything new to any cook who is familiar with the basic idiom of French cuisine. However, this book does shine: the dessert section is a spectacular feast of ideas, for example the almond flour pastry crust recipes, paired with a variety of fruit fillings. I like to make waffles and there are two fine recipes for different types and techniques of waffles that I will make again. His strawberry Bavarian mousse is a recipe I am very much looking forward to creating. Robuchon also offers great recipes for using different meats such as rabbit (which is widely available in meat markets here in Texas). Robuchon offers fine recipes featuring various parts of the bunny with peppers, with prunes, with a muscadet sauce and with mustard sauces.

Without the aid of Ms.
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46 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Sam Ryan on November 14, 2008
Format: Hardcover
In a holiday season stuffed with extremely glossy, gorgeous books on cooking - more fetish objects or coffee table books than cookbooks - The Complete Robuchon is an outlier. I pre-ordered my book months in advance, expecting a lavish, opulent package of arty photos, personal anecdotes, and the other trimmings of a major, cellophane-sealed Chef's opus.

Instead, what arrived at my door was a sturdy and stout cookbook, with colorless pages (and prose, for that matter) and not a single photo.

At first, I was disappointed. But then, when faced with such a massive cookbook, I sat down and began reading it, front to back. Robuchon, for a chef who we all may associate with innovation and opulence, tasked himself in this book with creating something for the home chef, and for the chef beginning their journey into the complicated world of French cuisine. So what he focuses on, above all else, in this book is technique. You leave a section on vegetables not even questioning why you would take the time to blanch. It's that authoritative, clear, and informative.

This isn't a coffee table book, and it isn't a book for a well-read French chef. It's a solid work, though, and an inspiring compendium of culinary knowledge - perhaps a little more basic than some might wish, but full of wisdom for everyone from beginners to... well, maybe intermediates.
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52 of 55 people found the following review helpful By dave on November 7, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This book is astonishing. It is indeed, as the New York Times declared, The Joy of Cooking for French cuisine--an ultimate authority you can count on for any occasion. There are all kinds of new preparations and delicacies which have entered French cooking through immigrant cultures. But there is a also the most refined take on technique you will ever find. Classic dishes, like pot-au-feu, that you may have learned from Julia Child or Paula Wolfert are here, but the steps, though simple to follow, are much more precise, and following them teaches you a lot about how subtle differences in method make a decisive difference in results. You will instantly see this when you make dishes that actually taste like the real thing you would have in France, not some Americanized version. This is far more than a cookbook; it's an education. Follow it and learn how a great chef works. Hint: it's not about blending weird, hard-to-find ingredients, or swirling sauce spirals on plates. It's all about subtle tweaks of basic techniques, the exacting understanding of a true master.
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Format: Hardcover
With all due respect to Julia Child, who worked to teach cooking itself to Americans as well as French recipes to cook with, and with all due awareness of the almost infinite number of other cookbooks on French home and bistro cooking, "The Complete Robuchon" by Joel Robuchon is probably the single best cookbook of essential French cooking, traditional dishes and classic recipes available for the home cook.

The attention to detail, organization and completeness of the book and the succinct and readable way all the topics and recipes are written makes this book a pleasure to own, to read and to draw endless inspiration and ideas from. This is NOT a Thomas Keller style coffee table cook book (such as "The French Laundry Cookbook", for example) filled with lush pictures, sprawling magazine style layouts and ornate texts. It's a thick, heavy handful of high quality, succinct knowledge and recipes for traditional French cooking.

Some reviewers in France have complained that this is just a book of old tried and true French cuisine. What is too close to home and old fashioned to some may be a trove of great knowledge to other readers in other cultures and countries. Some felt, evidently, that if the great Robuchon's name was attached, especially with a title like "The Complete Robuchon", that the book should include only haute cuisine and cutting edge innovations. But, just as being a solid draftsman with a command of classical visual vocabulary is perhaps essential to being a painter, even if one is working to subvert or evolve that art, having a firm and complete command of classical and French home cuisine is an immeasurable asset in understating how to innovate and draw on that tradition to create new and exciting things. This book is a great bargain, and will always be a source of solid information and recipes.
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