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Canal House Cooking Volume No. 6: The Grocery Store Flexibound – October 25, 2011

4.0 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews
Book 6 of 8 in the Canal House Cooking Series

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About the Author

 Melissa Hamilton is a renowned food stylist and cofounder of Canal House. She previously worked at Saveur, which she joined in 1998, as the test kitchen director, and was its food editor for many years. Hamilton also worked in the kitchens of Martha Stewart Living and Cook's Illustrated, and she was the cofounder and first executive chef of Hamilton's Grill Room in Lambertville, New Jersey. She has developed and tested recipes and styled food for both magazines and cookbooks, including those by acclaimed chefs John Besh, Michael Psilakis, Roberto Santibanez, and David Tanis. She works with Christopher Hirsheimer on Canal House Cooking, for which the two do all of the writing, recipes, photography, design, and production.

 Christopher Hirsheimer is an award-winning photographer and cofounder of Canal House. Her experience includes establishing a publishing venture, running a culinary and design studio, and publishing an annual series of three seasonal cookbooks titled Canal House Cooking. Prior to starting Canal House in 2007, in Lambertville, New Jersey, Hirsheimer was the executive editor of Saveur, which she cofounded in 1994, and the food and design editor of Metropolitan Home. She cowrote the award-winning Saveur Cooks series and The San Francisco Ferry Plaza Farmers' Market Cookbook. Her photographs have appeared in more than 50 cookbooks for such notables as Lidia Bastianich, Mario Batali, Julia Child, Jacques Pepin, and Alice Waters, and in numerous magazines, including Bon Appetit, Food & Wine, InStyle, and Town&Country. She works with Melissa Hamilton on Canal House Cooking, for which the two do all of the writing, recipes, photography, design, and production.

 Melissa Hamilton is a renowned food stylist and cofounder of Canal House. She previously worked at Saveur, which she joined in 1998, as the test kitchen director, and was its food editor for many years. Hamilton also worked in the kitchens of Martha Stewart Living and Cook's Illustrated, and she was the cofounder and first executive chef of Hamilton's Grill Room in Lambertville, New Jersey. She has developed and tested recipes and styled food for both magazines and cookbooks, including those by acclaimed chefs John Besh, Michael Psilakis, Roberto Santibanez, and David Tanis.

 Christopher Hirsheimer is an award-winning photographer and cofounder of Canal House. Her experience includes establishing a publishing venture, running a culinary and design studio, and publishing an annual series of three seasonal cookbooks titled Canal House Cooking. Prior to starting Canal House in 2007, in Lambertville, New Jersey, Hirsheimer was the executive editor of Saveur, which she cofounded in 1994, and the food and design editor of Metropolitan Home. She cowrote the award-winning Saveur Cooks series and The San Francisco Ferry Plaza Farmers' Market Cookbook. Her photographs have appeared in more than 50 cookbooks for such notables as Lidia Bastianich, Mario Batali, Julia Child, Jacques Pépin, and Alice Waters, and in numerous magazines, including Bon Appetit, Food & Wine, InStyle, and Town&Country.
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Product Details

  • Flexibound: 124 pages
  • Publisher: Canal House; Original ed. edition (October 25, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0982739426
  • ISBN-13: 978-0982739426
  • ASIN: 0982739427
  • Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #745,364 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Jesse Kornbluth on May 4, 2011
Format: Flexibound
Everything's "authentic" now. That is, we're seeing more and more "real" people in advertising. Men who look like Sam Shepard. Women with the grit of Edie Falco.

Not hard to understand why --- we're sick of fakes.

But here comes the irony: There's too much "authentic." It's not accurately defined --- most of what is now labeled "authentic" is just a new form of "fake."

Melissa Hamilton and Christopher Hirsheimer --- the women who create the seasonally-published Canal House cookbooks --- really are authentic. This is their description of their workspace in Lambertville, New Jersey, just across the river from New Hope, Pennsylvania:

"Our loft studio is in an old red brick warehouse. A beautiful lazy canal runs alongside the building. We have a simple galley kitchen. Two small apartment-size stoves sit snugly side by side against a white tiled wall. We have a dishwasher, but prefer to hand wash the dishes so we can look out of the tall window next to the sink and see the ducks swimming in the canal or watch the raindrops splashing into the water."

Why do I believe them? I've been there. Seen them in action. Real people, real food. I'd admired them before; now I adore them.

"Authentic" --- real authentic --- means listening to yourself. That's what Hamilton and Hirsheimer did in Volume 5. Those recipes were totally unexpected, and, in a recession, shocking: Fried oysters. Escargots. Four kinds of goose liver. Scrambled eggs with truffles. Lobster with browned cream. Truffled lobster with gnocci. What was the point? Who did they think their readers were? Why, thee and me. They just wanted us, in a grim time, to be extra-good to our friends and family --- and ourselves --- on special occasions.
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I started out with the first in their series of book/magazines and was instantly in love. I adored the workspace studio they occupy, their friendship (the two authors Christopher & Melissa, two BFF's)and their practical approach to cooking, eating, shopping, photography and writing about food.

Unfortunately the last three issues have been more and more pretentious. I do not eat this way and nor does anyone I know (even the foodiest foodies), living on filet mignon like its beef jerky and putting shaved black truffles into everything. I mean good heavens - they call themselves "home cooks" - what home? Beyonce & Jay-Z?

This is not my home certainly and I do pretty well for myself but my truffle, filet mignon and lobster budget is not really a factor.

The authors did not start out like this and I have rated the other books higher. Also since I got their new cookbook Canal House Cooks Everyday, I was disappointed to find that most of the recipes in it are in the previous volumes of their subscription effort.

The books are BEAUTIFUL however (especially the compendium version just released though I wish they had called it that)and I love the smaller size, that makes them readable and manageable in the kitchen. The new cookbook is huge and heavy and would break a toe if you dropped it on your foot.

The recipes are good for the most part, I've made quite a few dishes in the previous volumes. I have found a few recipes that had too little or too much salt and they tend to like lots of fat in everything, so you may need to adjust certain recipes to your own style of eating.

In this volume however there wasn't much that tickled my fancy. I have yet to finish the seventh issue, which was written about their stay in Tuscany which continues the theme of pretension because you know we can all jet off to Tuscany just to experience actually COOKING Italian food in Italy. Ugh.
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This is my second copy of this great cookbook. I figured we would need a backup so we don't wear out our current copy. The used books delivered it timely, and it was as described as to condition. For contents the recipes in CH #6 are just excellent, it has the most recipes we like of all the volumes so far...
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Very disappointed in this volume. A book titled "The Grocery Store" should fufill its promise, not simply provide an essay about one specific high-end store, adding some details about how the authors shop for each other. There was no insight for the vast majority of shoppers who must deal with "regular" grocery stores. I was let down by The Canal House authors.
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This was a bargain book, but there was never a mention that it would be stained with ink and dirty, like it was played with by a small child with a permanent marker and then dragged down an asphalt road and run over a few times for good measure. I look forward to my replacement copy and drooling and dreaming over the beautiful pictures and kitchen inspiring recipes. I especially look forward to having an abundance of tomatoes and trying the tomato jam recipe in Vol. 4 and the World's best waffles in this volume.
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