Books: Cooking by Cuisine -> Cooking American
In the Hands of A Chef : Cooking with Jody Adams of Rialto Restaurant
Published: January 1, 2002
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Jody Adams, the award-winning chef-owner of Boston's Rialto restaurant, believes that anyone who loves to eat can cook delicious food. Her In the Hands of a Chef bolsters the claim with recipes that help readers follow their instincts to
produce great dishes. This is restaurant food that's also approachable by home cooks; the 200-plus recipes, derived from classic European regional cooking but featuring ingredients indigenous to America, should provide pleasure to those who make and
Beginning with chapters devoted to "starters and small bites," soups, salads, and sides, the book then gets down to basics with seafood, poultry, and meat fare, including game. Standout recipes among these include Chilled Smooth Corn
Soup with Tomatoes, Avocado, and Lime; Pan-Roasted Salmon with Warm Cucumber Salad; and Braised Chicken Thighs with Ancho Peppers and Andouille Sausage. Chapters devoted to pasta and polenta feature dishes such as Linguine with Salsa Cruda and Semolina
Gnocchi with Red Wine Mushroom Sauce and Roasted Marrowbones. The chapter "A Mile in a Chef's Shoes" includes her most beloved dishes, such as Roasted Marinated Long Island Duck with Green Olive and Balsamic Vinegar Sauce. There are also formulas for
sweets, such as Lemon-Almond Butter Cake and Heather's Cranberry Chocolate Pecan Tart--"ease of preparation" desserts more typical of the savory cooks than of pastry chefs, Adams notes. This is a delightful collection, full of heart as well as good
taste. --Arthur Boehm
How do great chefs make their food taste better? Is it the ingredients they use? Their cooking techniques and equipment? That's part of the answer. But the real secret is that truly great chefs
follow their instincts -- the kitchens in their heads. Now, in her first cookbook, Jody Adams, the award-winning chef/co-owner of Boston's Rialto, teaches you how to follow your own instincts and make the transition from passionate eater to passionate
In the Hands of a Chef shares Jody's favorite dishes, those she prepares for family and friends in her home kitchen. By teaching the basics of artisanal cooking, or making good food from scratch, she gives cooks a solid foundation for
cooking like a chef. She tells readers what to look for when buying ingredients, what equipment is essential, and how a dish should look and taste while being prepared.
Above all, Jody encourages readers to trust their instincts and follow them to
create a cooking style that feels right, using recipes as the building blocks for their own creations.
From starters, seasonal soups, salads, and main courses to desserts, Jody reinvents Mediterranean foods using unconventional ingredients, many
from New England. For a boost of summer flavor, grilled tomatoes add depth to gazpacho. To vary the flavor of simple salads -- from a Minted Romaine Salad with Grapes, Ricotta Salata, and Toasted Almonds to Arugula and Portobella Mushroom Salad-one or
two seasonal ingredients are added to the usual recipes. Drawing inspiration from Italian tradition, Jody offers up innovative pasta and grains dishes. Ravioli, pappardelle, gnocchi, and linguine are served up with Mediterranean flavors and ingredients
-- tomatoes, olives, figs, chestnuts, fresh greens, wild mushrooms, Parmesan cheese -- for home-style meals any time of the year. Yet much of Jody's cooking is pure American in flavor. Dessert classics are reinvented with new twists, such as Super-Creamy
Rice Pudding with Passion Fruit Sauce and Heather's Cranberry Chocolate Pecan Tart. Here, too, are Jody's signature dishes, including Roasted Marinated Long Island Duck with Green Olive and Balsamic Vinegar Sauce and Soupe de Poisson, which Jacques Pépin
calls the best version outside of France.
Intended to make you wish you had more time to spend in the kitchen, In the Hands of a Chef is an inspiration as well as an essential resource for every cook. Why be just a good cook when you can be a
great one? Put yourself in the hands of Jody Adams with In the Hands of a Chef.
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