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The Way to Cook Hardcover – September 18, 1989
All Books, All the Time
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With The Way to Cook, Julia Child creates a second culinary classic. Her first, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, introduced a generation of those used to preparing simple fare to what was then considered gourmet food, demystified classic techniques, and raised our culinary consciousness. In The Way to Cook, she also demystifies cooking techniques and does some consciousness-raising. This time, though, she speaks to everyone with little or no experience in the kitchen, which is most people these days. Always in tune with the moment, and ever the gracious realist, Child (although calling her Julia seems reasonable since she treats us with such open informality) explains in The Way to Cook how to boil an egg and stuff it, as well as how to make a perfect omelet and an elegant soufflé.
To help out readers who lack the most basic knowledge, she organizes the book by techniques rather than by ingredients. Soups are first, a relatively unintimidating choice to build confidence through delicious results such as true French Onion Soup and a contemporary Black Bean Gazpacho. Next come breads, updated to use a food processor to cut the kneading time. The fish chapter covers broiling a salmon steak and creating a sophisticated Crown Mousse of Trout. Chapters on poultry, meats, vegetables, and desserts are equally ample and wide-ranging.
When The Way to Cook was published in 1989, it accompanied a television series. A related set of videotapes, the first to teach cooking comprehensively, was offered simultaneously. However, more than 600 color photos in this book make it fully complete on its own.
The Way to Cook is a good reference volume, a useful gift, and a handsome way to follow Julia's career as she transformed from a French classicist to the ever-evolving, always clear and reliable teacher we have come to adore. --Dana Jacobi
From Publishers Weekly
Child's new magnum opus reminds us that she has almost single-handedly inspired the superb quality of modern larders. Without her unflagging commitment to good eating, it is doubtful that fresh duck foie gras would have been available for the saute included here. However, this wonderful book is hardly a paean to elitist fare, maintaining Child's unique perspective while reflecting attitudes about food that "have changed through these last years" and sharing much new knowledge. Recipes, divided into a master formula and variations, are grouped by technique; French classics stand fin-to-wing with American offerings (roast turkey). Dietary concerns are addressed with low-fat soups and a cottage cheese-enriched chicken liver mousse. Nevertheless, the author of Mastering the Art of French Cooking, who would "rather swoon over . . . one small serving of chocolate mousse . . . than indulge one . . . fat-free gelatin puddings," has not gone light. Six hundred handsome photographs underscore Child's technical genius. 110,000 first printing; BOMC main selection.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Top customer reviews
I have no real experience in the kitchen and have no real technique as a cook. The great thing about Julia is the way she turns a recipe into a step-by-step process that anyone can follow. You just have to have a little patience. Once you understand a few basic master recipes, like the one for white sauces, or beef bourguignonne, preparing the variations is a no brainer. Before I got this book, I had no idea how to prepare vegetables other than to boil or microwave. Her instructions and processes for preparing vegetables are easy to learn and repeat. After a few times, its like riding a bicycle. Having grown up in the south, foods were fried, and vegetables were cooked in some sort of casserole with cheese or pork fat. The idea of cooking with wine never even crossed my mind. I am still learning, and this book covers so many kinds of dishes I never run out of things to try.
She takes the time to explain what to do when things go wrong, and how to correct common mistakes. The only thing better than having this cookbook is watching the DVDs of her TV shows. If you are willing to spend time in the kitchen, this is a great resource. I didn't know cooking could be so enjoyable.
Buy this with confidence. Julia Child was (I still have difficulty referring to her in the past-tense) a great chef, a great teacher, and she never was condescending to the reader or to her audience. This is not just a "cook book", it is a full cooking course.
I freaked out! Just inwardly, of course, but I was thinking, I can't make Julia Child!
So let me impart this wisdom to you--pick one meal, one dish you really eat several times a week. Let's say--bacon and eggs for breakfast. Learn how to make the quiche.
No really! Skip the pie crust, the pie crust is always a headache--make a bacon and egg quiche. Now do it again and again until it's really good and you know all the shortcuts. Now do the same with the Tuna Salad you eat every day for lunch.
You may never venture to the pastries--but you will eventually get further into gourmet cooking than you ever thought you could. And you will learn what food is really supposed to taste like (throw away that margarine!)
Most recent customer reviews
"The Way to Cook" should be in everyone's kitchen. Julia Child at her best! Great cookbook!Read more
this should be your one and only starting point as a cook and baker.Read more