Two legendary cooks, Julia Child and Jacques Pépin, invite us into their kitchen and show us the basics of good home cooking.
What makes this book unique is the richness of information they offer on every page, as they demonstrate techniques (on which they don't always agree), discuss ingredients, improvise, balance flavors to round out a meal, and conjure up new dishes from leftovers. Center stage in these pages are carefully spelled-out recipes flanked by Julia's comments and Jacques's comments--the accumulated wisdom of a lifetime of honing their cooking skills. Nothing is written in stone, they imply. And that is one of the most important lessons for every good cook.
So sharpen your knives and join in the fun as you learn to make...Appetizers--from traditional and instant grav-lax to your own sausage in brioche and a country pâtéSoups--from New England chicken chowder and onion soup gratinée to Mediterranean seafood stew and that creamy essence of musselsEggs--omelets and "tortillas"; scrambled, poached, and coddled eggs; eggs as a liaison for sauces and as the puffing power for soufflésSalads and Sandwiches--basic green and near-Niçoise salads; a crusty round seafood-stuffed bread, a lobster roll, and a pan bagnatPotatoes--baked, mashed, hash-browned, scalloped, souffléd, and French-friedVegetables--the favorites from artichokes to tomatoes, blanched, steamed, sautéed, braised, glazed, and gratinéedFish--familiar varieties whole and filleted (with step-by-step instructions for preparing your own), steamed en papillote, grilled, seared, roasted, and poached, plus a classic sole meunière and the essentials of lobster cookeryPoultry--the perfect roast chicken (Julia's way and Jacques's way); holiday turkey, Julia's deconstructed and Jacques's galantine; their two novel approaches to duckMeat--the right technique for each cut of meat (along with lessons in cutting up), from steaks and hamburger to boeuf bourguignon and roast leg of lambDesserts--crème caramel, profiteroles, chocolate roulade, free-form apple tart--as you make them you'll learn all the important building blocks for handling dough, cooking custards, preparing fillings and frostingsAnd much, much more...
Throughout this richly illustrated book you'll see Julia's and Jacques's hands at work, and you'll sense the pleasure the two are having cooking together, tasting, exchanging ideas, joshing with each other, and raising a glass to savor the fruits of their labor. Again and again they demonstrate that cooking is endlessly fascinating and challenging and, while ultimately personal, it is a joy to be shared.