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Chef, Interrupted: Delicious Chefs' Recipes That You Can Actually Make at Homeby Melissa Clark
Synopses & Reviews
For anyone who aspires to restaurant-chef-type food but not the long ingredient lists and interminable cooking directions, here’s the perfect book. Melissa Clark retains the spark of genius in the chefs’ original time-consuming recipes, but pares them down (interrupts the chefs) to their most essential, simple elements, allowing any cook to create four-star cuisine at home without a staff of sous-chefs, an unlimited budget, and an entire weekend to fritter away. Chef, Interrupted is like taking a cooking class from not one or two but more than fifty world-renowned chefs across a broad spectrum of expertise, including seafood with Eric Ripert and dessert with Claudia Fleming, American standouts like Tom Colicchio and Wylie Dufresne, and the international flavors of Norman Van Aken, Bobby Flay, and Marcus Samuelsson.
For the past decade, Melissa Clark has made a name for herself by doing one thing very adeptly: making chefs’ recipes accessible to home cooks, whether through coauthoring books with the likes of David Bouley and Daniel Boulud or writing “The Chef” columns and other articles in the New York Times. Melissa is a genius at discovering what’s really great about a chef’s recipe, then simplifying it—keeping the part where the recipe is inventive and delicious, and then interrupting the chef when it gets out of hand.
The result—this book—is a remarkable combination of creative cuisine and real-life practicalities, and Chef, Interrupted offers a fantastic panoply of mouthwatering dishes. From salads like Suzanne Goin’s Arugula-Mint Salad with Apricots and Cumin to fish like Christian Delouvrier’s Roasted Cod with Brandade Potatoes, from Jonathan Waxman’s Pollo al Forno with Panzanella to Tom Douglas’s Citrus-Braised Pork Shank with Bread-Crumb Gremolata, from Bill Telepan’s Heirloom Pea Pancakes with Smoked Salmon and Crème Fraîche to Claudia Fleming’s Goat Cheese Cake with Thyme-Macerated Raspberry Compote—this is restaurant food that you can really and truly make at home.
"A prolific cookbook coauthor and food writer, Clark revises the innovative recipes of top restaurant chefs, hoping to make them easier for nonpros. Her tweaks generally consist of replacing hard-to-find or difficult-to-manage ingredients with more available and user-friendly ones, then condensing steps to reduce preparation time and carefully clarifying more advanced techniques. By deconstructing each dish into its most necessary elements and bypassing fussy flourishes, Clark succeeds in keeping the essence of most of the famous chefs' foods. Home cooks will be delighted by Mushroom Risotto with Truffle Tea Foam based on Marcus Samuelsson's Aquavit recipe, or the Charlie Trotter — inspired Five-Spice-Crusted Tuna with Roasted Carrots and Rutabaga Pure, or a streamlined version of Eleven Madison Park's Chocolate — Peanut Butter Parfaits with Caramelized Bananas. Though simplified, these are sophisticated dishes that require planning ahead. Prep times are generally an hour or more, and that doesn't include the many ingredients that require chilling overnight, marinating a day ahead of time or a few extra hours of baking. Despite these obstacles, the promise of being able to prepare dishes made famous by the likes of Mario Batali and Alain Ducasse is indeed alluring. Photos. (On sale Sept. 20)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
About the Author
Melissa Clark is the author or coauthor of sixteen cookbooks, including The Last Course with Claudia Fleming, East of Paris with David Bouley, and The Modern Vegetarian Kitchen with Peter Berley, which won awards from both the James Beard Foundation and the International Association of Culinary Professionals. She has written about food in dozens of magazines and newspapers. She lives in Brooklyn.
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