Revolutionary! Mar 25, 2009
Chez Panisse in Berkeley was a revolutionary force in American cooking, spearheading the movement toward fresh, seasonal, regional ingredients as the basis for all menu decisions. In this book Chef Paul Bertolli shares hundreds of Chez Panisse recipes, for fish, shellfish, vegetables, risotto, pasta, bread, meats, poultry, desserts, preserves, and ?basics? - stocks, broths, oils,creams, and nitrates.
I have raved in another review about the book ?Chez Panisse Pastries?, which is of course my area of expertise; I was so impressed by that book I picked up this one as well. Like their pastry book, there are not a lot of photos or illustrations here - it could be intimidating, or less useful, for a novice - and it is jam-packed with California-influenced recipes. Their ideas and combinations are amazing, and wonderful, with many useful suggestions, including how to make a good menu (even cooler - they have sample seasonal menus from Chez Panisse).
I haven?t made a lot of these recipes, so I can?t really rate this book on usability, like their pastry book. I can recommend it, though - it is stuffed with a lot of great information; if you are a cook and truly interested in learning different approaches to food you will want to pick up this book.