Kristen Kish Cooking: Recipe and Techniques is more than just a cookbook. Kish wrote a heartfelt book by opening up about her personal life, sharing stories of her professional life as a chef, and her time while competing on Top Chef. The winner of season 10 of Bravo’s popular cooking show hopes that this cookbook shows you how to express yourself through cooking like it has for her.
The book starts out with a lengthy introduction by Kish. She shares stories about being adopted by a family in Michigan; how she took to cooking and how she has evolved over the years. Before Kish shares some of her favorite recipes, she teaches you different techniques and terms that I found to be the most beneficial part of this book. She explains topics on plating and presentation; blanching, braising, and brining ingredients; frying foods; making fresh pasta; pickling, searings, smoking, and much more. It was like a mini-cooking class over the span of about 10 pages.
The recipes are split up into several chapters: Snacks, Beginnings, From the Sea, Pasta and Grains, Meat, and finally Sweets. There are over recipes 80 within the cookbook. The photographs are nice and simple. The recipes are not for the beginner home cook. A lot of the steps and ingredients are not easy to do or find. For each recipe, you get a quick one or two paragraph story on the recipe, there is a listing of the techniques that will need to be used for the recipe (the techniques are covered in the beginning of the book), the breakdown of steps to cook the meal, and in some instances, notes of cooking.
Like the beginning introduction, you’re getting brief stories or memories about the recipe in the blurb. I like that in a cookbook when a recipe tells a story and it’s not just an ingredient listing with directions. That’s where this book works for me – the stories. Where it doesn’t work for is that there are no recipes in this book that I can cook for my entire family. If you, or someone you know, likes to cook a little more exotic, I think that you would really love this cookbook.
I was given a copy of Kristen Kish Cooking: Recipes and Techniques in exchange for an honest review. As someone who looks for recipes to feed his three kids, there isn’t a recipe I could find that they would enjoy; as a foodie who likes to cook, I found this to be an advance cooking book that pushes you to learn new techniques. It’s beautifully written, and the photos are nice. If you’re a fan of Kish you’ll love reading her stories.
Would I buy this if I saw it at the store? No. I don’t find this to be an everyday cookbook.
Do you own a copy of this cookbook? What do you think of it? Let us know in the comment section below!
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