The New Making of a Cook: The Art, Techniques, And Science Of Good Cooking
 
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The New Making of a Cook: The Art, Techniques, And Science Of Good Cooking [Hardcover]

Madeleine Kamman
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)


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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Professional cooking schools have used Madeleine Kamman's The Making of a Cook since it first appeared in 1971. She has now revised it to reflect newer techniques, the availability of a wider range of ingredients, and the recent American aversion to fat. She suggests eating fats in moderation, and includes recipes for cholesterol-free gingerbread and more. Fundamentally, Kamman teaches classic French technique as applied to American ingredients. For example, she carefully explains how to make a classic espagnole sauce as chefs have made it for centuries and also provides, as an alternative, a brown stock made in the microwave.

A good chef must understand food chemistry; any good cook is fascinated by the hows and whys of the kitchen. Kamman gives the information that a professional requires, with clarity anyone can understand.

The main drawback to The New Making of a Cook is that its size makes it awkward to have in the kitchen, though you will want it handy for recipes such as Stuffed Pork Butt with Apples and Pistachios; the Pilgouri at Delphi, a bulgur pilaf studded with Feta cheese; Chocolate Puff Pastry; and Kamman's brilliant quartets of recipes for vegetable stir-frys and steamed chicken breasts.

From Library Journal

Although this massive book began as a revision of Kamman's classic The Making of a Cook (1971), it's really an entirely new work; the text has been rewritten and greatly expanded, and few of the recipes are the same. The organization is similar, based generally on techniques and "building blocks" rather than courses of a meal (not surprisingly, the chapter titled "The True Way to That Man's Heart" has been dropped). While classic French dishes are still important, there are many lighter recipes, and Kamman, aware of the realities of the modern work week, incorporates time-saving suggestions and variations into more complicated recipes. Kamman's masterwork contains an incredible amount of information not only on techniques and ingredients but also on food science, cultural and culinary history, and myriad other topics. Although the book's size may seem intimidating, home cooks will find many creative everyday recipes here, and more ambitious cooks will turn to it for both inspiration and reference. Highly recommended.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

Anyone looking to assess the state of American cooking at the end of the twentieth century need search no further than Kamman's new two-volume opus. Kamman, updating her 1971 Making of a Cook, has integrated all the latest data from food science and nutrition with culinary artistry into an exhaustive compendium. Kamman's teaching experience embraces the cream of contemporary American chefs as well as home cooks, and here she addresses both groups. Her total mastery of cooking techniques may overwhelm the novice, but Kamman's professionally rigorous attention to detail suffuses the book, extending to such minutiae as distinguishing which particular models of a mixer make cohesive quenelles. In Kamman's kitchen, classic French cuisine and sauces combine fluidly and intelligently with Asian stir frying and South American grilling. Every grain, every meat, every spice, has a place in her repertoire. Wherever possible, Kamman has revised classic to reflect contemporary anxieties about fat consumption. Very highly recommended for instructional cookbook collections. Mark Knoblauch

Review

Kamman has written her book for the budding professional or the serious amateur who wants to achieve pre-professional expertise. She covers nonglamorous fundamentals like pots and pans, the chemistry of basic ingredients and the fine points of the cooking techniques that chefs must master.... If you can tough it out, you emerge with a new store of knowledge and a firm command of the basics.... Kamman's tome stands a monolith, issuing a challenge to every cook with ambition, determination and the biceps to lift it off the shelf. -- The New York Times Book Review, William Grimes

About the Author

Madeleine Kamman has been a four-star restaurateur, a PBS cooking show host, and co-founder and director of The School for American Chefs, a graduate program for professional chefs. She is the author of numerous cookbooks, and lives in St. Helena, California.
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