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The 4-Hour Chef: The Simple Path to Cooking Like a Pro, Learning Anything, and Living the Good Life Hardcover – Print, November 20, 2012
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Top Customer Reviews
Second disclaimer: I am NOT a Tim worshiper. The 4-Hour Workweek is a sometimes unethical pipe dream that a couple people writers imitating Tim have made money on. For most of us, it contains a couple tricks to be more efficient at our 9-5. The 4-Hour Body is a relatively interesting and fun book on fitness and diet experimentation. I learned a few tips and tricks from it and really enjoyed reading about his experiences. I have read most of Tim's blog and consider it a sometimes better alternative to "Life Hacker".
Those two disclaimers being said, this is a GREAT book if you come in with the right expectations. If you're looking for 600+ pages solely devoted to grocery shopping, prep, recipes, cooking and eating, you will not find it here. You'll find about 200-250 pages dedicated solely to such, and 200 more at least somewhat related--consisting of wilderness cooking and survival, great restaurants, 140 character recipes, and basic tools you need in the kitchen. At a macro level, the most useful cooking lessons are Tim's notes on equipment to have in your kitchen, his 10 easy recipes (most of which are really interesting/easy shortcuts), and the charts on spices that go with different countries. At a micro level, I picked up a few random tidbits from the 1/2-pagers on how to quickly defrost a steak, how to make the perfect cup of coffee, etc. The most important part of this section is that Tim teaches you HOW to cook, not just how to follow a recipe.Read more ›
What I enjoyed:
-- Ferriss's storytelling. He has a nice way with words: "Mangalitsa acorn-finished woolly boar tasted just like acorns. I was chewing on fall, clear as crystal, in a sliver of cured ham."
-- His emphasis on the slow food movement and local, organic farming. (But strangely, his "Clean 15" foods include sweet corn, which is mostly genetically modified.)
-- His language hacking tips, which are gold. I've always wanted to master several languages and found his methodology solid and logical.
-- The 140-character Twitter recipes from almost every country in the world: fun, simple, and intriguing.
What I didn't like:
-- Ferriss's tangential teaching style. At one point he goes from braising to English's 100 most common written words to kickboxing to chess to tango spins in order to emphasize the importance of selection and sequencing. It didn't work for me, because I often lost track of the original concept.
-- His foray in into survival and hunting skills, just so you can make your own venison burger. (If you want some cricket protein bars, however, you'll need to mail order the crickets.) This section could have been a separate book and might have been fascinating as a metaphor/methodology for learning entrepreneurial skills.Read more ›
- The book claims it's not a book about cooking yet 80% of the content is food related. He talks a lot about meta-learning but doesn't really dive into learning types and just gives generic learning tips.
- The book reads almost like a magazine and jumps all over the place as you progress through.
- Random mens magazine style tips (how shoot a jumpshot??, Knifes, guns, camping etc) I feel like I'm reading a GQ magazine.
- Really big book, the formatting is good but some of the pictures looked very amateur.
- You can tell he didn't write a lot of content of the book. Ferris is the master of outsourcing yet he makes it seems like he is the jack of all trades.
- Tons of pages of recipes (I thought this wasn't a cookbook?)
...more later as I progress through the book.
Overall I would say that it is a very entertaining book but I didn't find it more educational than any magazine you can pickup off the newsstands.
I highly doubt he wrote or edited much of this mess. I suspect he dictated it as he was performing one of his hundred adventures. Then it was codged together by an offshore team. The same team that wrote the thousand 5-star reviews.
I suspect there's some important message in this hodgepodge, but I couldn't find it.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a great book just as Ferris others are. Easy read, intelligent, and informative. This is the second of 3 of his books that I would recommend.Published 13 days ago by Brandon Dillard
SUPER useful and easy to read. Tim Ferriss cuts to the chase and provides the essentials for you to be successful. Read morePublished 20 days ago by Amazon Customer
I listened to the audio book first, but had to get the print copy. If you're interested in the learning process for anything - you gotta read this book. Read morePublished 24 days ago by B. Landers
Love Love Love this book! Bought it for my 12 yr old wanna-be-chef after a friend recommended it. It's a great gift - he loved it!Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer