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Charlie Trotter's Hardcover – November 1, 1994
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From Library Journal
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
Since then, the book has grown on me, and I've grown with it. His approach to food has opened a new chapter in my efforts to become an excellent chef, and his vision has gripped me with a mania that borders on the religious. Coming up to speed with his culinary style takes a lot of work and a lot of money, but once I found sources for the necessary ingredients, and stocked up my freezer with preparations like fennel oil, pinot noir reduction, and cubes of sauteed black chanterelle mushrooms, I am able to whip up a three-course Trotteresque dinner in just a few hours. Notably, I have never followed one of his recipes literally; it is impossible. Instead, you must draw from his techniques and improvise, using whatever excellent ingredients are available in your area at that time.
In short, this is a landmark book that has completely changed the way I approach food. It is NOT for the casual chef, however. His cuisine should be approached with the kind of practice and discipline one might apply to, say, learning to play the piano. The path is long and hard, but the results are worth it.
If you care - REALLY care - about becoming a truly great chef, then buy this book. If not, it's still worth it just to drool over the pictures.
His dishes are laid out for course meals so the portions are small. I eat very small portions so if I cook the soup (the entire recipe, suggested serving is four) with some bread on side, it is enough for my friend and I.
I disagree with anyone who says that the recipes are hard to use. The time consuming part is roasting, baking, or cooling time (which does not require you spend the entire time in the kitchen, I generally spend that time to go do something else). I usually don't have the flavored oils that he calls for but I just substitute with one of the oils I have or just really good olive oil. I think if you have the time than go for the entire recipe but skipping the oils, or very small amount of sauce is not going to hurt the taste of the dish.
If you are intimidated by his book, I suggest your start with his soup recipe (for example, his Tomato soup recipe calls for taxi tomato...if you don't find taxi tomato, use big yellow tomato or even good quality red tomato).
The culinary masterpieces created in the mind of Charlie Trotter push the outer limits of creativity and innovation. This book focuses on every aspect of a gourmet meal: from visual presentation to taste, texture, and usage of seasonal fruits and vegetables. I am a big fan of this book. While I will not make every recipe in it, it has caused me to experiment more freely in my kitchen and opened my mind to new possibilities, food combinations, and presentation styles. There are several recipes that call for extremely exotic/hard-to-find items...don't bother with them...Improvise and use what you have.
This book is not for the novice chef. A solid understanding of several cooking techniques is required for each dish...but with some practice, you will be rewarded tenfold. If you have the means, I highly recommend his namesake restaurant in Chicago. It is an utterly overwhelming experience.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I get very dirty, torn cover and the box that contained very batteredPublished 12 months ago by Juan pablo Forciniti
I am a cook from Cleveland, I've been in the field since age 14, I am now 18 years old. I would recommend this book to any aspiring chef. Read morePublished 22 months ago by Bronson Petti
If your focus is "bringing vegetables to the center of your plate", this is a reference work you'll want in your library. Read morePublished on October 3, 2014 by Student Of Life