French Cookbook

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French Cookbook

Postby Ed Vermillion » Thu Jul 20, 2006 1:10 pm

Need your opinions on a basic French cookbook for getting started down that path. I have never been attracted to France in spite of my last name. I would prefer a less pedantic style than Olney and am leaning towards Susan Loomis' "French Farmhouse Cookbook" with its particular style. What are your favorites?
In my kitchen "Fire Extinguisher" is listed as an ingredient.
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Re: French Cookbook

Postby Howie Hart » Thu Jul 20, 2006 1:50 pm

"Hows and Whys of French Cooking" by Alma S. Lach - I've had this book for about 30 years and love it. Classical and provincial recipes and menus, wine pairings, interesting anecdotes, everything from sauces, soups and bread to fish, veal, lamb and eggs.


http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/078580 ... e&n=283155
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Re: French Cookbook

Postby Carl Eppig » Thu Jul 20, 2006 2:17 pm

Anything and everything by Julia Child and/or her companions.
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Re: French Cookbook

Postby Robin Garr » Thu Jul 20, 2006 3:44 pm

Ed Vermillion wrote:What are your favorites?


I'm afraid they're long out of print, Ed, but I think Amazon can still get used copies of Mireille Johnston's <I>Cuisine of the Rose</i> (Burgundy) and <I>Cuisine of the Sun</I> (Provence). I love both books.

Julia Child's books are classics of our generation, sure, but as much as I admire her, I haven't warmed up to the books as much as some. To me, a lot of the recipes are very long and finicky even when they don't have to be. Although that being said, <I>Mastering the Art of French Cooking</i> is certainly a good book to have.

Patricia Wells is another good name to look for, both <I>Bistro Cooking</I> and <I>The Provence Cookbook</i>.

I'm not aware of any French cookbook that does for France what Marcella Hazan does for Italy, sadly. But if you could pick up either or both of Johnston's books mentioned above for a reasonable used-book price, I don't think you'd be sorry.

Have you tried searching the Louisville Free Public Library Website? You can order any book in the system and have it delivered to any branch for pickup. I very often use this to audition a cookbook before deciding if I want it enough to buy it. Save me a bunch o' bucks.
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Re: French Cookbook

Postby Carl Eppig » Thu Jul 20, 2006 7:17 pm

Though I still rank JC first, agree with Robin on Mireille Johnston's Cuisine of the Rose (Burgundy) and Cuisine of the Sun (Provence). We have been using both for decades.

Another excellent one written in America by an American originally from Lorraine is "Charles Virion's French Country Cookbook." Lots of good stuff in that one.
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Re: French Cookbook

Postby Mike Filigenzi » Thu Jul 20, 2006 7:31 pm

We like James Peterson's Glorious French Food an awful lot. There's good info on both classic recipes and some newer takes on them as well as technique. It's a big book, but I find the recipes relatively easy to follow and the results have been very good.



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Re: French Cookbook

Postby Ed Vermillion » Thu Jul 20, 2006 9:08 pm

I should have written I am intimidated by the mystique of french cooking. :oops: France itself is a glorious place from Normandy to Chamonix. I even find Paris charming for a huge city. It seems to be cloaked in some mysterious layer of witchcraft in my mind. Certainly there are other regions of the world that have complex recipes that I have made well (well enough to eat and enjoy :roll: ) yet something has held me back. I have found the cookbooks Robin mentioned on Amazon for a pittance. I'll start with Cuisine of the Sun, Bistro cooking and French Farmhouse cooking and see what happens. I'll let you know. Thanks to all for the input. Allez!!!!
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Re: French Cookbook

Postby John F » Sat Jul 22, 2006 12:23 pm

Bistro Cooking by wells is outstanding
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One that is not intimidating at all

Postby Sonia Hambleton » Sat Jul 22, 2006 3:06 pm

I have "Recipes from a French herb Garden" by Geraldene Holt. I cannot comment on how it stacks up to the others, but for my inexperienced hand find that the recipes are easy to follow and not difficult at all.
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