For the past six decades, Gourmet magazine has shaped the tastes of America, publishing the best work of the foremost names in the world of food. To create this landmark cookbook, editor in chief and celebrated authority Ruth Reichl and her staff sifted through more than 50,000 recipes. Many were developed exclusively for Gourmet's test kitchens. Others came from renowned food writers and chefs and from the magazine's far-flung readers. Then the editors embarked on an extraordinary series of cook-offs to find the most unforgettable dishes, testing and retesting each one to ensure impeccable results.
This collection, the only one of its kind, spans a vast range of cultures and cuisines. With it, you can go back to the time when Beef Wellington ruled the table or prepare something as contemporary as Crispy Artichoke "Flowers" with Salsa Verde. And whether you're cooking a simple supper for two or throwing a cocktail party for fifty, you'll make every dish with more flavor and more flair using The Gourmet Cookbook. It includes
* 102 hors d'oeuvres, dips, chips, pâtés, and first courses * exciting vegetable dishes -- more than 120 in all -- using everything from artichokes to yuca * versatile recipes for every available kind of seafood, with many suggested substitutes * hundreds of simple but exceptional dinners * festive dishes for every occasion, including a perfect roast turkey with stuffings, the ultimate standing rib roast, and even a gorgeous (but easy) wedding cake * definitive versions of all the classics, from Chicken Kiev to Crcme Brulée and from Bouillabaisse to Pad Thai * more than 50 pastas and risottos, from quick everyday meals to party dishes * scores of soups, salads, breakfast dishes, and sandwiches, including the editors' all-time favorite pizza * a wealth of sauces and salsas, to transform ordinary meals into spectacular ones * more than 300 desserts: cookies, pies, tarts, pastries, buckles, crumbles, ice creams, puddings, mousses, and cakes galore, including cheesecakes and the nine best chocolate cake recipes Gourmet has ever published
With engaging introductions to each chapter by Ruth Reichl, entertaining headnotes, indispensable information about ingredients and techniques, hundreds of tips from Gourmet's test kitchens, and an extensive glossary, The Gourmet Cookbook is the essential kitchen companion for anyone who wants one-of-a-kind recipes and spectacular results every time.
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When Gourmet magazine opened shop in 1941, it addressed a small epicurean audience. In those days, fine dining was French, seafood specialties always seemed to include cream and sherry, and game made the meal--or so the magazine preached. The bill of fare has changed since then, and fine dining now includes dishes from the world's four corners, commanded by a broad, food-aware audience. Over the years, Gourmet has chronicled all this, changing to reflect a wider, more democratized food scene that has also, paradoxically, raised the bar on what's expected of the average, too-busy cook. The Gourmet Cookbook is the most comprehensive of the magazine's recipe anthologies--a mega-tome offering more than 1,000 formulas drawn from Gourmet since its birth.
The statistics are indeed impressive: more than 100 hors d'oeuvre recipes; an equal number of vegetable dishes; 200 desserts--21 chapters in all, touching all courses and including stops at breakfast and brunch specialties; breads and crackers; plus sauces, salsas, and preserves. Included are recipes from Gourmet contributors like James Beard and Jean-Georges Vongericten, and hundreds of sidebars like "Salad Greens Primer" and "Blind Baking," all useful and informative. There are classic dishes like onion soup gratiné, gefilte fish, corn fritters, and peanut butter cookies; "new classics" such as fried calamari and spaghetti alla carbonara; and the "modern," including oatmeal brûlée with macerated berries and grilled lobster with orange chipotle vinaigrette--"every recipe you'd ever want," says the text, something of an understatement.
Cooks should know, however, that this is not a basic cookbook, despite its Noah's ark of formulas. Rather, it's a Gourmet cookbook, which means that, notwithstanding some rudimentary recipes, the focus is on the stylishly up-to-date (which is not to deny the excellence of the formulas), resulting, often, in refinements. Thus its recipe for mac and cheese calls for dijon mustard and panko; its beef stroganoff requires cremini mushrooms; its grilled chicken calls for brining; and so on. Recipes can also run to over 450 words, and require unusual ingredients. (A list of sources is provided.) Of all its chapters, those for sweets are the most immediately attractive.
For all the praise, though, there's one major goof. The recipe titles are printed in a light butter-yellow color, making them almost illegible. For many readers, this will be a deal-breaker; others will find it merely annoying. Should you own the book? For dedicated cooks and foodies the answer will be, How can I not? --Arthur BoehmFrom the Publisher :
Some of the reviews here mention the light type of the recipe titles. This problem applies only to the first printing. We darkened the type in subsequent printings, and the titles are now easy to read. Please see Search Inside.
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