Saturday, August 20, 2011

Chef Joel Robuchon's Le Grand Livre de Cuisine

A memoir, an epic cookbook with documentary DVD from "The Chef of the Century",  Joel Robuchon, definitely an incredible volume of one man's culinary passion.    I was invited to a special luncheon at Restaurant Joel Robuchon, Las Vegas and to my surprise I received this incredible gift.   The inscription translates "To my dear Alice, for her passion to fine cuisine for whom it is not just in the eyes".    Shocked and almost in tears, I graciously accepted.

This padded-cover book comes in slip jacket box, text in French, recipes in metric, 504 pages, gorgeous photos, published by chef and colleague Alain Ducasse.  Price tag 250 Euros/ $325 US.  Sold at his Las Vegas Restaurants (Joel Robuchon and L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon @MGM Grand Hotel).   If you don't read or understand French, culinary terms, metric measuring, mis en place, or classic French  cooking techniques you could just be looking at the pictures and drooling in your wine!   

A bonus DVD (in French) is a lovely documentary revealing JR's journey from young man of modest means dreaming a success story not most of us could comprehend.   The son of a Poitiers brick-layer, young Joel was first called to serve in the priesthood.  However fate directed him to help out in the nun's  kitchen.   He was hooked for another calling.   His journey from cook to chef de cuisine to Jamin Restaurant chef- owner proves his earned success and world recognition.   I love this book.   I love the story, I love the man, I love his integrity, creative passion and overwhelming generosity to share his love of food with the entire world.   Oh yes, the recipes are very detailed and work as written.

I predict this elegant culinary tome will be a cherished, collectible treasure in anyone's culinary library. 

Chef Joel Robuchon and Alice

This brings me to an earlier and more practical work by Chef Robuchon which is.........

The Complete Robuchon (in English, U.S. measurements) is affordable, understandable, doable and delicious!    A U.S rollout in Las Vegas, October 2009 to a first class party with panache, French pomp and circumstance fit for royalty!    I received an early review copy, read it cover to cover, tested recipes and am surprised how good it is coming from a French chef (so much information can be lost in translation).   I highly reccommend this book to anyone with some basic food knowledge and a passion to learn from Chef Joel Robuchon.   700 pages, no photos, $35.

Chef Joel, Alice, Bobby & Stephanie at book soiree