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Old 01-15-2008, 02:45 PM   #1
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Which book should I get?

hi everyone, i was thinking of purchasing either 'cooking with jaime' by jaime oliver or 'cooking' by james peterson. i heard they're both good and seem like they would help me improve on the fundamentals while learning new recipes too. what do you guys and gals think?

i'm also thinking of getting the following but for some other time:
i'm just here for the food by alton brown
the art of simple food by alice waters
rocco's real life recipes by rocco dispirito

i was also looking at 'the fundemental techniques of classic cuisine' by the french culinary institute and thought it would look great on the coffee table because of all the wonderful colorful pictures in it. :D

any suggestions?

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Old 01-15-2008, 03:23 PM   #2
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Hi Tuan.....I Can't advise you on which one would be the best bang for your buck, but someone will be along directly that can.

Welcome to DC....


Have Fun & Enjoy!
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Old 01-15-2008, 03:28 PM   #3
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Alton Brown's book is GREAT...my favorite by far. Talks about the science behind cooking, and explains the "why" behind recipes. Would definetely recommend it.
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Old 01-15-2008, 03:33 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tuan View Post
hi everyone, i was thinking of purchasing either 'cooking with jaime' by jaime oliver or 'cooking' by james peterson. i heard they're both good and seem like they would help me improve on the fundamentals while learning new recipes too. what do you guys and gals think??

Peterson without question if your goal is technique. He is an authority. Jamie Oliver is a gifted chef with interetsting recipes, (I have one of his books that I really like) but he's not in Peterson's league.

Other books you might be interested are

The New Making of a Cook
by Madeleine Kamman

How to Make Everything
by mark Bittman

Cookwise
by Shirley Corriher

The Professional Chef
by the Culinary Institute of America
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Old 01-16-2008, 05:20 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chave982 View Post
Alton Brown's book is GREAT...my favorite by far. Talks about the science behind cooking, and explains the "why" behind recipes. Would definetely recommend it.
I concur. It is a great read, even outside of the kitchen context, it's cool to learn the way things work. Also, it includes free magnetic, meat diagrams. Bonus!

No experience with the other books.
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Old 01-16-2008, 07:12 PM   #6
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James Peterson's "Cooking" seems like the best bet to me. I've never seen a negative review of this book, which, if not his best, is at least the one to have if there can be only one. Very well written, and exceptionally well organized (and large) volume.

I found a pretty good online sample of his work here, which I think would serve very well to illustrate just how helpful his writing can be.
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Old 01-29-2008, 08:20 PM   #7
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tuan,
If you are looking for a lot of fundamental information, I recommend Jacques Pepin's "Complete Techniques".
I am not familiar with Peterson, but I was at Borders last night and briefly saw a book by him, it is quite impressive and more entertaining than Pepin's.
Pepin explains each technique with text AND graphic information, he covers pretty much everything you will ever do in a kitchen. To me, it is pretty hard to beat on fundamentals. The book has lots of recipes, but not as many as you will expect in an 800 pages volume.
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Old 01-29-2008, 09:39 PM   #8
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cooking by petersen for sure
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Old 02-01-2008, 03:43 PM   #9
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Thumbs up Good Start

These are all good suggestions & great names. It's tough to choose what to start out with if someone was asking me. I've subscribed to magazines, bought books, watched the shows religiously at times, and attended a couple of lessons.

I think if you were particularly inspired by someone, you should start there if only to build on passion and enthusiasm. I recall an episode on American hamburgers & "chips" with Jaime Oliver from 4 or 5 years back, and I can still vividly remember details from the show today. It was truly interesting to see this 'American' culinary staple prepared in England w/ an English perspective.
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Old 02-02-2008, 10:20 AM   #10
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Pick em all up! LOL. The more the merrier, as long as you have the money and room for them all.
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