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"The Family Meal: Home cooking with Ferran Adrià"


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* Being a Phaidon book, it's very visual--there are a couple of double page spreads showing all of the cooking utensils and appliances needed to complete the recipes in the book, ranging from a simple spatula to a soda siphon

Interesting that Phaidon's the publisher. I only have a couple of their cookbooks, but they're beautiful.

* A goddamn potato chip omelet

At least as a published recipe, Dorie Greenspan beat him to it. Around My French Table, Potato Chip Tortilla, p. 141.

* A lot of the main course dishes look simple but pretty good--there are a few I want to try

This is the bottom line for me. Do you want to cook/eat these recipes? I'd be very interested in hearing more about the kinds of recipes included in the book.

Currently discounted on Amazon (US) for $16.50: here


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* A goddamn potato chip omelet

At least as a published recipe, Dorie Greenspan beat him to it. Around My French Table, Potato Chip Tortilla, p. 141.

Going back even a little further, Jose Andres had a recipe for a potato chip torilla in his Tapas book, ~2005 I think!

Count me in as another person looking forward to seeing people actually cook from The Family Meal.

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* A lot of the main course dishes look simple but pretty good--there are a few I want to try

This is the bottom line for me. Do you want to cook/eat these recipes? I'd be very interested in hearing more about the kinds of recipes included in the book.

Currently discounted on Amazon (US) for $16.50: here

Some sample dishes

Entrees:

Gazpacho

Grilled lettuce hearts

Pasta bolognese

Miso soup with clams

Guacamole with tortilla chips

Lime-marinated fish

Mains:

Roast lamb necks with mustard and mint

Pork ribs with barbecue sauce

Sausages with tomato sauce

Baked sea bass

Mussels with paprika

Rice with duck

Veal with red wine and mustard

Crab and rice stew

Thai beef curry

Desserts:

Rice pudding

Caramel foam

Almond soup with icecream

White chocolate cream

Coconut flan

Strawberries in vinegar

Baked apples

Chocolate cookies

Look, if you can get it for next to nothing--$20, say--it's worthwhile. If you're the average eGulleter, tho', and already know most of the stuff from the book (which covers some techniques, sure, but hardly gets into the depth of a Blumenthal book or TV show) and have a collection of decent but basic recipes to draw upon for daily meals, you're probably better off saving your money for something else. It's not like there's a shortage of great books that have just come out or are about to come out--new Blumenthal, Mark Best, Peter Doyle, Neil Perry, Georgio Locatelli, Daniel Humm, Andrew McConnell, Nobu, etc.

Edited by ChrisTaylor (log)

Chris Taylor

Host, eG Forums - ctaylor@egstaff.org

 

I've never met an animal I didn't enjoy with salt and pepper.

Melbourne
Harare, Victoria Falls and some places in between

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Thai beef curry

How does this look?

It uses blade steak, fresh ginger, olive oil, store-bought yellow Thai curry paste, coriander/cilantro leaves, water and coconut milk. It's cooked for a long time (unless you happen to own a pressure cooker).

What's most interesting is that it's served with a German-style potato salad (meaning it includes sliced frankfurters, gherkins and a handful of capers) and strawberries in Cab Sauv vinegar.

Edited by ChrisTaylor (log)

Chris Taylor

Host, eG Forums - ctaylor@egstaff.org

 

I've never met an animal I didn't enjoy with salt and pepper.

Melbourne
Harare, Victoria Falls and some places in between

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I cooked one of the dishes for dinner--the chicken wings and mushrooms main course from meal 11 (there are 31 meals all up--each with an entree, main and dessert). I served it with rice and roast tomatoes.

DSC_0154.jpg

Essentially you saute chicken wings for a good half hour and then add (a lot) of garlic and some mushrooms (I used shiitakes, oysters and rehydrated porcinis). Then some bay, thyme, white wine and water (in place of water I used the 'instant mushroom stock' from the porcinis).

It was alright. I mean, I'm not going to be offended by anything that combines three of my favourite foodstuffs.

Edited by ChrisTaylor (log)

Chris Taylor

Host, eG Forums - ctaylor@egstaff.org

 

I've never met an animal I didn't enjoy with salt and pepper.

Melbourne
Harare, Victoria Falls and some places in between

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Thai beef curry

How does this look?

It uses blade steak, fresh ginger, olive oil, store-bought yellow Thai curry paste, coriander/cilantro leaves, water and coconut milk. It's cooked for a long time (unless you happen to own a pressure cooker).

What's most interesting is that it's served with a German-style potato salad (meaning it includes sliced frankfurters, gherkins and a handful of capers) and strawberries in Cab Sauv vinegar.

Not a huge fan of the store bought curry paste, but I'll give it a try. My copy should arrive this weekend.

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This book was an impulse buy instigated when Amazon.com issued a rebate of customs duties on another purchase.

Fascinated as I am by the layout and the photographs I am stumped by the quantities called for to make a basic beef stock:

1 small onion

4 1/2 ozs of beef scraps

1 1/2 ozs of beef bone

2 1/4 lbs of carrot

6 lbs of celery

1 1/2 gallons of water

Huh-- really? Surely this can't be right.

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Thai beef curry

How does this look?

It uses blade steak, fresh ginger, olive oil, store-bought yellow Thai curry paste, coriander/cilantro leaves, water and coconut milk. It's cooked for a long time (unless you happen to own a pressure cooker).

What's most interesting is that it's served with a German-style potato salad (meaning it includes sliced frankfurters, gherkins and a handful of capers) and strawberries in Cab Sauv vinegar.

Not a huge fan of the store bought curry paste, but I'll give it a try. My copy should arrive this weekend.

Nothing stops you from using your own homemade paste from the freezer. I mean, a lot of other sauces and bases (i.e. sofrito) are DIY in the book ... so it's not like you're straying away from the intent of the book.

Chris Taylor

Host, eG Forums - ctaylor@egstaff.org

 

I've never met an animal I didn't enjoy with salt and pepper.

Melbourne
Harare, Victoria Falls and some places in between

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Thai beef curry

How does this look?

It uses blade steak, fresh ginger, olive oil, store-bought yellow Thai curry paste, coriander/cilantro leaves, water and coconut milk. It's cooked for a long time (unless you happen to own a pressure cooker).

What's most interesting is that it's served with a German-style potato salad (meaning it includes sliced frankfurters, gherkins and a handful of capers) and strawberries in Cab Sauv vinegar.

Not a huge fan of the store bought curry paste, but I'll give it a try. My copy should arrive this weekend.

Nothing stops you from using your own homemade paste from the freezer. I mean, a lot of other sauces and bases (i.e. sofrito) are DIY in the book ... so it's not like you're straying away from the intent of the book.

I know, but I wish he had developed a recipe for it with the option of going store bought.

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Thai beef curry

How does this look?

It uses blade steak, fresh ginger, olive oil, store-bought yellow Thai curry paste, coriander/cilantro leaves, water and coconut milk. It's cooked for a long time (unless you happen to own a pressure cooker).

What's most interesting is that it's served with a German-style potato salad (meaning it includes sliced frankfurters, gherkins and a handful of capers) and strawberries in Cab Sauv vinegar.

Not a huge fan of the store bought curry paste, but I'll give it a try. My copy should arrive this weekend.

Nothing stops you from using your own homemade paste from the freezer. I mean, a lot of other sauces and bases (i.e. sofrito) are DIY in the book ... so it's not like you're straying away from the intent of the book.

I know, but I wish he had developed a recipe for it with the option of going store bought.

I guess. I don't know if you're missing much, tho', the point of this book clearly isn't to provide the 'perfect' (with concessions for the home cook) version of anything (i.e. like Blumenthal's television show or a couple of Keller's books).

Chris Taylor

Host, eG Forums - ctaylor@egstaff.org

 

I've never met an animal I didn't enjoy with salt and pepper.

Melbourne
Harare, Victoria Falls and some places in between

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I saw this book at Strand last night and couldn't stop touching it and staring...came home and ordered it from Amazon for $20 in savings! LOL I haven't been on in a while but since I know it's fall cookbook season I knew you all would be rockin and rollin over here and actually COOKING from it! Chris has yet to let me down! :wub:

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* A goddamn potato chip omelet

At least as a published recipe, Dorie Greenspan beat him to it. Around My French Table, Potato Chip Tortilla, p. 141.

Going back even a little further, Jose Andres had a recipe for a potato chip torilla in his Tapas book, ~2005 I think!

The first time I had the potato chip omelet was at the recommendation of a friend when we had lunch at Fast Good, the mini chain Adria had in Madrid with NH Hotels. Though initially skeptical, I found the dish to be quite good.

I've since made it many times using the Andres recipe as a base. It's quick, simple, inexpensive, and has lots of room for improvisation and additions - roasted garlic, caramelized onions, diced chorizo, grated cheese, etc. If I recall correctly, Andres credits Adria as his inspiration for the dish from the days he worked at El Bulli.

As far as a published recipe for the dish is concerned, you have to go back further yet to an earlier book from Adria - Cocinar en Casa (2003).

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  • 2 weeks later...

This is a very good book -- But does anyone know which editions of the book use weight and not volume, and grams? There are pictures of thermometers in Celsius and then the text gives only Fahrenheit. Certainly the dishes were conceived in the metric system and to deprive American readers of the precision the original recipes provided is terrible. There is a French edition that is presumably better. The UK edition has a separate ISBN but it may still use Imperial measures.

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This is a very good book -- But does anyone know which editions of the book use weight and not volume, and grams? There are pictures of thermometers in Celsius and then the text gives only Fahrenheit. Certainly the dishes were conceived in the metric system and to deprive American readers of the precision the original recipes provided is terrible. There is a French edition that is presumably better. The UK edition has a separate ISBN but it may still use Imperial measures.

My UK edition book just arrived from Amazon UK with grams, litres, Celsius, etc. ISBN 978-0-7418-6239-2.

This book was an impulse buy instigated when Amazon.com issued a rebate of customs duties on another purchase.

Fascinated as I am by the layout and the photographs I am stumped by the quantities called for to make a basic beef stock:

1 small onion

4 1/2 ozs of beef scraps

1 1/2 ozs of beef bone

2 1/4 lbs of carrot

6 lbs of celery

1 1/2 gallons of water

Huh-- really? Surely this can't be right.

This must have been a weight translation error as this version has, respectively: 130g, 1kg, 2.7kg, 80g, 40g, 5 litres. I'll let you do the math for conversion.

Edited by nickrey (log)

Nick Reynolds, aka "nickrey"

"The Internet is full of false information." Plato
My eG Foodblog

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I'd have to say that the brilliance of this book is that the recipes themselves are nothing special. There is no dish meant to wow or impress in the entire book. However, the best part about the book is that it is a lesson in applying restaurant style organization and *thrift* in the home kitchen. I emphasize the thrift, since conventional wisdom in home kitchens is to make judicious use of convenience, store bought products. And while this book hardly shies away from store-bought finished foods...it does make some purposeful choices about what is worth your while to make from scratch. I think that it's a pretty great tool for actually getting hesitant home cooks to cook on a regular basis...and to cook well. The compromises suggested aren't borne out of the desire to pander to a wider audience...but an attempt to explain how elBulli can nourish their staff on a limited budget of time and money.

As Chef himself is fond of telling...it's not about who made the first omelette (or mini-skirt) it's about the person who can conceptualize it and take it somewhere interesting.

Like many of you here, my shelves are full of more "adventurous" or "advanced" cookbooks, but I'd have to say that I've never seen a home cookbook like this one. I'm definitely feeling it.

Edited by Renn (log)
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This is a very good book -- But does anyone know which editions of the book use weight and not volume, and grams? There are pictures of thermometers in Celsius and then the text gives only Fahrenheit. Certainly the dishes were conceived in the metric system and to deprive American readers of the precision the original recipes provided is terrible. There is a French edition that is presumably better. The UK edition has a separate ISBN but it may still use Imperial measures.

My UK edition book just arrived from Amazon UK with grams, litres, Celsius, etc. ISBN 978-0-7418-6239-2.

This book was an impulse buy instigated when Amazon.com issued a rebate of customs duties on another purchase.

Fascinated as I am by the layout and the photographs I am stumped by the quantities called for to make a basic beef stock:

1 small onion

4 1/2 ozs of beef scraps

1 1/2 ozs of beef bone

2 1/4 lbs of carrot

6 lbs of celery

1 1/2 gallons of water

Huh-- really? Surely this can't be right.

This must have been a weight translation error as this version has, respectively: 130g, 1kg, 2.7kg, 80g, 40g, 5 litres. I'll let you do the math for conversion.

Thanks so very much.

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Thanks for the UK edition information! It is very sad that for the US edition the publisher obliterated the weight measurements carefully done at El Bulli in favor of cups, etc., and where it did retain weight did conversions inaccurately. I guess I will now need to purchase either the UK or French editions and try to figure out what to do with my US edition.

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I was actually able to see three recipes from the British edition on the video and it is facinating that there are so many differences: same pictures, but more vinegar on the fried fish and a note on the history of using iSi at El Bulli in British edition, different directions on the level of heat and the size of the basil leaves to use in the US edition . . . these were meticulous changes that somebody made -- working from what -- a Catalan original, with two different translators? Both English editions were released on Oct. 3.

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The UK version uses the original metric measures. Less translation, less chance of error. Translating into an idiosyncratic and less accurate system for the US edition. Make your own conclusion as to which is likely to be more accurate.

Nick Reynolds, aka "nickrey"

"The Internet is full of false information." Plato
My eG Foodblog

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nickrey is certainly right as to the measurements. Aside from measurements, I also noticed a lot of "translation" of text, and substitution of different text, among the snippets where I could see the UK, US and French editions, but I don't know which of these, if any, is the Urtext. Most of Phaidon's cookbooks do not have a separate UK and US edition. I sent two inquiries to the publisher asking which of the four editions (there is also one in Italian) is the Urtext or closest to it, but have received no reply.

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I just ordered the UK version you made me curious!

Me, too.

This is a really basic cookbook. I think it would be the perfect choice for a beginning cook that has expressed an interest in someday becoming a great cook, rather than a neophyte that only wants to learn enough in the kitchen to just get by.

I'll admit I was a bit disappointed when it first arrived. At first glance, there didn't seem to be much new; much that I haven't done before.

But I've already gotten several tips as to how to make dishes that I've been preparing all my life a little bit better. So I'm a fan.

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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