Books: Cooking by Cuisine -> Cooking American
Secrets of Success Cookbook: Signature Recipes and Insider Tips from San Francisco's Best Restaurants
Published: April 15, 2000
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The Book of Kells, one of the great illuminated manuscripts, sits in the library of Trinity College in Dublin, a new page daily revealed to the public. You could do much the same with Michael Bauer's The Secrets of Success Cookbook in your
kitchen, displaying a new and wonderful signature recipe from a San Francisco restaurant each day for 300 days. Imagine. You would start with Parmesan Budinis with Warm Asparagus and Pea Shoots from Acquerello, learning the secrets of baking a successful
custard, and end with an Apple Galette from Zax wherein the secret of success consists of unsalted butter and chilled dough.
As a food and restaurant critic for the San Francisco Chronicle, Michael Bauer has had ample opportunity to take a note or
two about the kinds of dishes that make one restaurant stand out from another, the so-called signature dish. It would be one thing to cajole Bay Area chefs into sharing their recipes and making certain those commercial recipes actually work in a home
kitchen. But Bauer takes it one step farther: He ferrets out the successful technique behind each dish. Who in their right mind would go to all the time and trouble to preserve lemons for a dish like Moroccan Game Hens with Preserved Lemons and Olives as
served at Kasbah? Well, it turns out that what normally takes a month can take a week if you freeze the lemons and add salt--so why not give it a try?
Bauer introduces each recipe with detailed notes about the chef and restaurant as well as
baseline information about the actual dish. Recipe instructions have been pared down to the essentials. A Secrets of Success sidebar accompanies each recipe. The difficulty comes with page after page after page of deliciousness. Where to start? What to
try next? Will you start with the Grand Café recipe for Polenta Soufflé with Mushroom Sauce? Or what about Bradley Ogden's Potato Skins with Smoked Salmon and Horseradish Crème Fraiche from the Lark Creek Inn? Baronda's Mixed Green Salad with Grapefruit
and Warm Shrimp certainly looks good. So does the Seared Black Pepper Lavender Fillet of Beef from Café la Haye. The list is 300 recipes deep. One a day would take you through the better part of a year. And what a year that would be. --Schuyler
The San Francisco Bay Area and neighboring Wine Country are home to some of the world's finest restaurants. Ever wished you could recreate one of these fabulous restaurants' dishes in your own kitchen? Michael Bauer,
esteemed food critic for the San Francisco Chronicle, has spent years twisting the arms of the Bay Area's best chef's for the secrets to their signature dishes. Now they're all collected in The Secrets of Success Cookbook. Filled with anecdotes, insider
tips and techniques, plus over 300 great recipes from all over the Bay Area, this must-have book will help you dazzle your dinner guests from the first course to the last. Where it's a spoonful of cocoa powder in Bistro Jeanty's Coq au Vin or the
double-baking technique for Zax's Goat Cheese Souffle, The Secrets of Success Cookbook offers the inside scoop on bringing the taste of Northern California's most-prized culinary delights home to your own table.
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