From a random review:

Get new posts by email:

Note: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Navigate the site:
Click here for a complete list of books reviewed or select below:
Search the site:
The ratings:
5 stars  excellent
4 stars  very good
3 stars  good
2 stars  fair
1 stars  poor

Blog stats:

About the blogger:
Debra Hamel is the mother of two preternaturally attractive girls and the author of a number of books about ancient Greece. She writes and blogs from her subterranean lair in North Haven, CT. Read more.


Books by Debra Hamel:

THE BATTLE OF ARGINUSAE :
VICTORY AT SEA AND ITS TRAGIC AFTERMATH IN THE FINAL YEARS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

KILLING ERATOSTHENES:
A TRUE CRIME STORY
FROM ANCIENT ATHENS
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

READING HERODOTUS:
A GUIDED TOUR THROUGH THE WILD BOARS, DANCING SUITORS, AND CRAZY TYRANTS OF THE HISTORY
By Debra Hamel


paperback | Kindle | hardcover (US)
paperback | hardcover (UK)

THE MUTILATION OF THE HERMS:
UNPACKING AN ANCIENT MYSTERY
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

TRYING NEAIRA:
THE TRUE STORY OF A COURTESAN'S SCANDALOUS LIFE IN ANCIENT GREECE
By Debra Hamel


paperback | hardcover (US)
paperback | hardcover (UK)

SOCRATES AT WAR:
THE MILITARY HEROICS OF AN ICONIC INTELLECTUAL
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)

ANCIENT GREEKS IN DRAG:
THE LIBERATION OF THEBES AND OTHER ACTS OF HEROIC TRANSVESTISM
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)

IT WAS A DARK AND STORMY TWEET:
FIVE HUNDRED 1ST LINES IN 140 CHARACTERS OR LESS
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

PRISONERS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)





Book-blog.com by Debra Hamel is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution - Noncommercial - No Derivative Works 3.0 License.


  Previous post:   Cusk, Rachel: A Life's Work  
  Next post:   Maxwell, William: So Long, See You Tomorrow  


Pépin, Jacques: The Apprentice: My Life in the Kitchen

  Amazon  

3 stars

Jacques Pépin isn't like the rest of us. When he encounters some thousands of snails slime-trailing their way around the wet terraces of his vacation bungalow, Pépin doesn't just register their appearance as a curiosity and move on, as we might. He thinks "Dinner!" and runs around excitedly collecting the creatures in a wastepaper basket. When a friend complains that his boat's outboard motor regularly hits something hard in a particular shallow channel, Pépin investigates and once again finds a free lunch--the obstruction is a shoal of mussels from which he happily gathers a feast.

These stories hint at the most striking revelation of Pépin's autobiography, The Apprentice: My Life in the Kitchen: the man is obsessed with food. This ought not come as a surprise, I suppose. Pépin is, after all, a renowned professional chef. But not every professional is so taken with the subject of his expertise. Love of food and its preparation--foraging or fishing for it, prying it from the walls of a vacation resort, simmering it on his own stovetop or stirring up consommés in thousand-gallon vats--pervade Pépin's life.

In straightforward, readable prose, The Apprentice tells the story of Pépin's life in food, from his childhood in war-rationed France--where his father, a member of the Resistance, smuggled the occasional banana to his wife and sons; to his apprenticeship in the kitchens of his mother's restaurants and under a series of respected French chefs; to his increasingly successful career in America. Throughout, one marvels at the author's apparently flawless memory for cooking. Remarkably, Pépin describes in detail dishes he made decades earlier, their ingredients and preparation, how the meal was received. These sections of the book do not make for the most scintillating reading for those of us who are not food aficionados, but they are impressive even so. For those who are inclined to take to the stove, Pépin includes more than twenty recipes in the book.

Comments

Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear on this weblog until the author has approved them.

If you have a TypeKey or TypePad account, please Sign In