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Old 08-12-2010, 01:10 AM   #1
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Any good books for intermediate casual chefs?

I'm looking for not necessarily a book of recipes, but more along the lines of teaching proper techniques and methods, e.g., how to choose ingredients, how to store food, what to look for when your fish is frying in a pan.

I feel like I know my way around a kitchen, but I have developed a lot of bad habits because I have zero formal training.

Any suggestions?

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Old 08-12-2010, 01:22 AM   #2
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Yes I have one! Its called, The College Vegetarian Cookbook. You don't even have to be a vegetarian to own it! It has amazing recipes designed for people with similar skills as you! There is a great section in the beginning all about basic cooking fundamentals! Hope this helps!
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Old 08-12-2010, 01:47 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoGreyhounds View Post
I'm looking for not necessarily a book of recipes, but more along the lines of teaching proper techniques and methods, e.g., how to choose ingredients, how to store food, what to look for when your fish is frying in a pan.

I feel like I know my way around a kitchen, but I have developed a lot of bad habits because I have zero formal training.

Any suggestions?
Things Cooks Love Collection - Features - Sur La Table A very nice book that has techniques, recipes and tools. By, Sur la Table.
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Old 08-12-2010, 05:25 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoGreyhounds View Post
I'm looking for not necessarily a book of recipes, but more along the lines of teaching proper techniques and methods, e.g., how to choose ingredients, how to store food, what to look for when your fish is frying in a pan.

I feel like I know my way around a kitchen, but I have developed a lot of bad habits because I have zero formal training.

Any suggestions?
Larousse Gastronomique. Amazon often sell it at a reduced price. It will give everything you need to know and, excellently. :)
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Old 08-12-2010, 10:47 AM   #5
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I echo GoGreyhounds good Q. I think the difficulty of finding such a cookbook is that, we all have a tail end when we're beginners and a tail end in sight when we're master chefs, and this giant gap inbetween when we're "intermediate" cooks. Degrees of intermediate skill isn't well defined.

It's not the best, it leans a bit toward beginner end, some of the recipes are inedibly bad, but it is a useful reference for me -- "How to Cook Everything" by Mark Bittman. I expected a book that tries to cover everything to be edited down to a point where everything is insufficiently covered. But it actually does a pretty good job, of course, leaning toward the basic necessary info for cooking "everything."
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Old 08-12-2010, 10:57 AM   #6
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What Einstein Told His Cook is a great book, especially if you have a scientific mind, although that is not required to get a lot of of it.
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Old 08-12-2010, 11:03 AM   #7
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Here are some that will give you a good foundation on techniques from Julia and Jacques and science from McGee.

Amazon.com: The Way to Cook (9780679747659): Julia Child: Books

Amazon.com: On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen (9780684800011): Harold McGee: Books

Amazon.com: Jacques Pépin's Complete Techniques (0768821216597): Jacques Pépin…
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Old 08-12-2010, 11:29 AM   #8
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I have several of this genre, all picked up on bargain tables at bookstores. Two of my favorites are Le Cordon Bleu Complete Cooking Techniques, and Turgeon's Creative Cooking Course.
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Old 08-12-2010, 01:56 PM   #9
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I just saw several books at our used bookstore. I didn't write the titles down, but there appears to be a large selection of them. From "Cook's Illustrated" to "Williams-Sonoma."
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