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Taming the Flame: Secrets for Hot-and-Quick Grilling and Low-and-Slow BBQ Hardcover – May 6, 2005

4.4 out of 5 stars 38 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Karmel brings a feminine flair to a masculine domain with this A-to-Z roadmap to grill-based cuisine—from fast, high-heat methods to slower roasts and barbecue that rely on an indirect flame. Some may disagree with Karmel's assertion that there's no taste difference between gas and charcoal, although she does give tips on using old-fashioned briquettes. Her extensive introduction to techniques, tools and pantry basics make up the meat of the book; the 350 recipes that follow, organized by ingredient, rely so heavily on the methods set earlier that novices will frequently find themselves flipping back and forth. Karmel aims to be encyclopedic, offering a guide to cuts and a cooking timetable in every section, and she's at her best with natural variations on grilling, from simple Chicken Paillard to ambitious Hung-Your-Momma Braised Short Ribs. Karmel has never met a dish she can't make on the grill, and her attempts at grilled versions of Pot Roast and Veal Scaloppini are unnecessary. Her chatty, "girlfriend" point of view leads to a few lapses: for example, the beef section omits "rare" from its cooking timetable, and Grilled Lobster 101 devotes more time to avoiding killing the lobster (getting someone else to do it being the top choice) than it does to cooking it. Overall, though, this is a welcome guide for members of either sex. Photos. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

armel brings a feminine flair to a masculine domain with this A-to-Z roadmap to grill-based cuisine—from fast, high-heat methods to slower roasts and barbecue that rely on an indirect flame. Some may disagree with Karmel's assertion that there's no taste difference between gas and charcoal, although she does give tips on using old-fashioned briquettes. Her extensive introduction to techniques, tools and pantry basics make up the meat of the book; the 350 recipes that follow, organized by ingredient, rely so heavily on the methods set earlier that novices will frequently find themselves flipping back and forth. Karmel aims to be encyclopedic, offering a guide to cuts and a cooking timetable in every section, and she's at her best with natural variations on grilling, from simple Chicken Paillard to ambitious Hung-Your-Momma Braised Short Ribs. Karmel has never met a dish she can't make on the grill, and her attempts at grilled versions of Pot Roast and Veal Scaloppini are unnecessary. Her chatty, "girlfriend" point of view leads to a few lapses: for example, the beef section omits "rare" from its cooking timetable, and Grilled Lobster 101 devotes more time to avoiding killing the lobster (getting someone else to do it being the top choice) than it does to cooking it. Overall, though, this is a welcome guide for members of either sex. Photos. (May) (Publishers Weekly, April 11, 2005)
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; 1 edition (April 22, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0764568825
  • ISBN-13: 978-0764568824
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 1.2 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #651,820 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By B. W. Maness on May 6, 2005
Format: Hardcover
When I purchased this book, I was expecting to find information on grilling techniques and recipes to demonstrate them. I did not expect how comprehensive this book would be. It is the bible of grilling! It covers every aspect of grilling and barbequing and gives the reader the insight gained through years of research.

The first 30 pages or so take you through all the basic information that you need before you grill. From choosing a grill to a detailed explanation of the difference between direct and indirect grilling, this section will educate the novice and cause the pro to question long held beliefs. The remainder of the book takes you through step by step instructions on how to grill most anything. The book is highly organized and easy to use. There is a chapter for every meat or food type and each chapter begins with all the practical information you need to grill the right way. It takes an enormous amount of information and presents it in the most readable format imaginable.

But one thing has impressed me beyond all others- this book has been able to balance the authoritative with the personal. All too often, the most comprehensive cookbooks lack personality and warmth. While this book has all the important technical information you would expect from a textbook, it is filled with the warmth and personality of someone who obviously loves what she does. Every recipe begins with a story that gives the reader insight into how the recipe was discovered or created. This combination is so rare.

I remember the first time I read Bill Neal's Southern Cooking and how I was struck by his combination of cooking knowledge and cultural history. Taming the Flame strikes me in a similar way.
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Format: Hardcover
Having sizeable Grill/BBQ cookbook collection already, it takes something to catch my eye and add at this point. Browsing through this one did it.

She is definitely into it, and conveys this energy and expertise in this over 350 page offering. It will provide basics for initiate and wealth of great recipes and tips for all up to expert.

Begins each unit with a 101 intro, as well there is great intro to types of grills and smokers, and glossary and sources along with a menu suggestion section. Nice style with about 20 4 color photos of some dishes makes for an attractive cookbook. Further, great grilling time charts in every section which are very useful!

What caught my perusing eye was such creative entrys as "Beer Can Turkey" (already into the Chicken on the Can); Sweet Pork Sausages in a Dijon-White Wine Sauce; French Onion Dip burgers; Jack and Coke Soaked Pork chops; Portobello Mushroom Dip with Pita Points; Italian Grilled Cheese Skewers; and a terrific twenty source rub and sauce recipe section.

This adds much to the spectrum already out there, including Bobby Flay, James Purviance, Chris Schlessinger, Steven Raichlein, et al. Neat to see the ladies really into great grillin and BBQ, e.g. Karen Adler and Judith Fertig.

Fun book to read and use.
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Format: Hardcover
I bought this book on a whim and have been amazed at how comprehensive, easy to read and execute, and just fun the book is. My husband has really gotten into grilling in the last year, and we have a small library of top grilling titles, and this is always our go-to. When, for example, we wanted to grill Cornish game hens, this book was the only one with a recipe (and a delicious one at that). If you like grilling, you must own this book!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am very selective/picky about cookbooks. I don't just want recipes. I want pictures and I want tips and I want HELP on how to make it great. I'm already a pretty good home cook and pretty good at the grill, but learning TECHNIQUES makes a good cook a great cook - cookbooks with just recipes are fun to read and grab at the library for an idea, but why buy it when you can google a recipe? But when you already know how to create good food, it's not the recipes that make a better cook, it's the skills behind the recipes. A book you want to keep close at hand, is one that you know you will learn from and will grab again and again - "How should I set up the grill again for bone in chicken?" "What's the best way to make that pork loin?"... It's the basics, spelled out.

Of my 75 or so of constantly being tweeked/edited out cookbooks, I have ONE grilling cookbook. I got it because everyone said it's the best and while yes, I grab it here and there, it's uninspiring and not overly useful. So, I decided to grab a couple grilling books from the library to learn a few more things now that we live in a house where grilling is easier to do (versus in townhouse living where I had to cross the house and go down a flight of stairs to get to the patio). After reading through all the 101 part, and perusing the recipes, I told my husband I need this cookbook because I'll be grabbing it over and over. The other cookbooks I checked out from the library were 'eh'. Even though money is super tight right now with remodeling and buying a new house, this book is going to be the treat to myself! GREAT book!!!

The ONLY thing I wish it had, but it's not anything to dock points from the book about, is stuff on rotisserie grilling. And I'm with the author - I think gas and charcoal are the same - ONCE your gas grill is well seasoned.
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