Top positive review
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Detailed Review of Contents...Book Contains Pictures for Every Single Step, Meal Plans, Timelines, etc.
on October 14, 2011
I've never eaten at El Bulli, and I know Chef Adria only via some guest appearances on TV. I can't say enough good things about this cookbook. It will work for novices and experts alike. There are tons of tips, and many of the sauces have freezing instructions as well. Pretty much every step has a full-color photo, so it's hard to make a mistake. There are no strange ingredients either. My only complaint (if I can say that) is nearly every meal contains a fish course--and I'm not a fan of fish. My husband is, however, so thinks it's the best cookbook I own. :)
When I bought it, Amazon did not have any way to preview it. So, I'll try and tell you what's in it.
First, there are the basic recipes. Each one of these has step by step close-up pictures.
Picada, Tomato sauce, Sofrito, Bolognese sauce, Romesco sauce, Pesto sauce, Barbecue sauce, Teriyaki sauce, Chimichurri sauce, Croutons, and Aiolo. Most have two different quantities you can make depending on your needs.
Stocks: One nice tip he gives is that they reboil the stuff they made a stock with, calling it second stock....and then use that as the water the next time they make stock.
Fish stock, chicken stock, beef stock, and ham stock.
Now the meals. There are 31. Each one contains ingredients for 2, 6, 20, and 75 people. Each one contains step by step pictures and a timeline.
Meal 1: Caesar salad, Cheeseburger & potato chips, Santiago cake
Meal 2: Pasta bolognese, mackerel & potato stew, chocolate cookies
Meal 3: Vichyssoise, lamb w/mustard & mint, chocolate truffles
Meal 4: Beans w/clams, salt cod & vegetable stew, baked apples
Meal 5: Polenta & parmesan gratin, sesame sardines w/carrot salad, mango w/white chocolate yogurt
Meal 6: Potato chip omelet, pork loin w/ peppers, coconut macaroons
Meal 7: Saffron risotto w/mushrooms, Catalan style turkey, Yogurt foam w/strawberries
Meal 8: Roasted eggplant w/miso dressing, sausages w/tomato sauce, creme Catalane
Meal 9: Lime-marinated fish, osso buco, pina colada
Meal 10: Miso soup w/clams, Mackarel w/vinaigrette, almond cookies
Meal 11: Fried egg w/asparagus, chicken wings w/ mushrooms, sangria w/ fruit
Meal 12: Potato salad, Thai beef curry, strawberries w/vinegar
Meal 13: Farfalle w/ pesto, Japanese-style bream, Mandarin oranges w/Cointreau
Meal 14: Tomato & basil salad, crab & rice stew, coconut flan
Meal 15: Bread & garlic soup, Mexican-style slow-cooked pork, Figs w/cream & Kirsch
Meal 16: Noodles w/shitake & ginger, duck w/ chimichurri sauce, pistachio custard
Meal 17: Baked potatoes w/romesco sauce, whiting in salsa verde , rice pudding
Meal 18: Guacamole w/tortilla chips, Mexican style chicken w/ rice, Watermelon w/ menthol candies
Meal 19: Spaghetti w/tomato & basil, Fried fish w/garlic, Caramel foam
Meal 20: Cauliflower w/bechamel, pork ribs w/bbq sauce, Banana w/lime
Meal 21: Gazpacho, black rice w/squid, bread with chocolate and olive oil
Meal 22: Peas & ham, roasted chicken w/potato straws, pineapple w/molasses & lime
Meal 23: Tagliatelle carbonara, cod & green pepper sandwich, almond soup w/ice cream
Meal 24: Garbanzo beans w/spinach & egg, glazed teriyaki pork belly, sweet potato w/ honey & cream
Meal 25: Potatoes and green beans w/Chantilly, quail w/couscous, caramelized pears
Meal 26: Fish soup, sausages w/mushrooms, oranges w/honey, olive oil, and salt
Meal 27: Mussels w/paprika, baked sea bass, caramel pudding
Meal 28: Melon w/cured ham, rice w/duck, chocolate cake
Meal 29: Roasted vegetables w/olive oil, salmon stewed w/lentils, white chocolate cream
Meal 30: grilled lettuce hearts, veal w/red wine and mustard, chocolate mousse
Meal 31: Waldorf salad, noodle soup w/mussels, melon & mint soup w/pink grapefruit
There are not that many vegetarian options--and none of these are bargain meals. Still, Chef Adria gives good tips like on what to do with leftover almond pulp after making almond milk, tomato pulp, etc. Sounds like nothing is ever wasted.
This is a beautiful book. Even if you don't think you'll make an entire meal as written, I'm sure you'll enjoy the detailed instructions and fabulous recipes for many of the different courses.