91 of 92 people found the following review helpful
A real pleasure, both to read and to bake from...,
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This review is from: Bittersweet: Recipes and Tales from a Life in Chocolate (Hardcover)
Alice Medrich opened her first Cocolat shop when I was an impoverished undergraduate at Berkeley in the mid-1970s. I learned an important lesson from her: Since even the poorest student could buy a single Cocolat truffle, just that one truffle, made with care from superior ingredients, would delight, satiate, and inspire in a way that a bag of M&Ms never could.
"Bittersweet" offers bakers (at any level of expertise) enticing new ingredients and technique that go into the creation of memorable chocolate desserts. She revisits old favorites, such as brownies, and offers variations; in my opinion, the Lacy Coconut-Topped Brownies alone are worth the price of the book. Mousse also gets the Medrich treatment, including a very successful variation that can be whipped up completely dairy-free, if desired.
Medrich also suggests some surprising ways to incorporate unsweetened chocolate into savory dishes, such as an astonishingly delicious Italian dolce-forte ("sweet and strong") meat sauce for pasta.
This is a fun book to read, which can't always be said of a cookbook, and the photographs are stunning. Memoirs are currently all the rage in the publishing industry, but here's one that doesn't leave the reader with a raging case of indigestion. Though many people consider Alice Medrich to be America's reigning chocolate queen, she isn't the one telling you so. In this unpretentious, informative book, her desire to share the joy of a bittersweet-chocolate moment shines through on every page.
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Initial post: Feb 27, 2012 4:35:58 AM PST
Victoria M. Wall says:
What a joy that you have first hand experience . . . or . . . mouth experience in the author's early days - thanks!
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