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Old 05-18-2007, 03:58 PM   #11
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Yes - that's terrific advice KatieE. Browsing in bookstores of all kinds is one of my (& my husband's) favorite hobbies.

My criteria for purchasing cookbooks - used or new - is that if I flick thru them & can find at least 6 recipes that make me want to try them, the book is mine - lol!!!
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Old 05-19-2007, 12:20 PM   #12
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Thanks a lot guys "LOL". I've been wanting to order a nice magazine and I'm now trying to look up reviews between cuisine at home and cooks illustrated. They look like magazines I'd like. I ended up ordering a free trial of each to check them out.
I should really only choose one subscription to purchase for the year though.
should is the word...........
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Old 06-18-2007, 10:41 PM   #13
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Thank you all for your suggestions! Much appreciated.
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Old 07-07-2007, 11:26 AM   #14
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I know this is a belated post but I just saw this topic today. Honestly, there isn't a book that can teach you as well as watching someone do it. I am just like you in this respect, I don't learn from performing a recipe. I need to know why I'm performing it a certain way.

I agree with the poster listing Cook's Illustrated. There are a lot of information and science why they perform a particular technique and add a certain ingredient to their dish of topic. Maybe you can read their mags and watch their show on PBS Saturdays. Their website, TV shows, and mags are pretty good. I also think the Fine Cooking magazine is a great read, with pictures of techniques, when it comes to making you a better cook. By the time I finish one of the issues, I'll know how to make a great dish and why it is so great. My spanish omelette from Fine Cooking is the reason why I make it better than the top hotel in Madrid (according to my gourmet husband). Check out their website but I think the magazines are a great collection to have.

Magazines aside, I learned some techniques using various books but I can't pinpoint a single book that has really helped me. From the books I've thumbed through, Le Cordon Bleu and Anne Willan seem to be good teachers.

For learning through television, I hate to admit that I learned a lot from watching Emeril. Yes, he can be a pain with all of his "bams" and the humming he does to his food but he is a great instructor and tells you the whats and whys while he is cooking. I feel like I'm in class when I watch him. Tyler Florence is another good instructor on the FN. If you have a chance, Jacques Pepin is awesome for French cuisine techniques. Between him and Le Cordon Bleu, you can be a force to be reckoned with.
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Old 07-30-2007, 03:57 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KathyJ
I'm surprised no one has answered you yet....welcome to the forum!

I'm not an expert, but I have heard the following books recommended:

La Technique - Jacques Pepin
Essentials of Cooking - James Peterson
The Best Recipe - Cook's Illustrated

I second the nomination of Essentials of Cooking by James Peterson. This book has shown me how to do many new things in the kitchen. Also, my first cookbook was the Good Housekeeping Illustrated cookbook. I would recommend that also.
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Old 10-22-2007, 12:35 PM   #16
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Good thread. I need to get this book. Looks like a trip to Books-a-million is in order.
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Old 11-14-2007, 08:44 AM   #17
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I'll take whatever you have.
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Old 11-14-2007, 09:16 AM   #18
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the larder chef by mario jack leto is a brilliant book and i refer to it alot. it has all the basic cookery processes and many of the more complicated ones too!
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Old 12-16-2007, 05:32 PM   #19
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I just bought this book too. Its great so far!
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Old 12-16-2007, 06:51 PM   #20
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I agree that books are good references but nothing beats getting your hands dirty cooking. You might look around where you live for adult education classes. My city's Parks and Recreation department has some beginner cooking classes. Many schools no longer offer Home Economics which is where I learned a lot about cooking. That and helping my mom and grandma cook were the basis of my learning. Now I can look at a book but most techniques I've at least watched someone else do it first. I do have a Better Homes and Gardens cookbook that teaches techniques with pictures and follows each technique with lots of recipes that use that skill. I received it as a wedding gift 25 years ago so don't know if it is still available or not. I have used it some for the substitutions listed in the back. You know the kind that says if you don't have this, use this instead.
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