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Amuse-Bouche: Little Bites of Delight Before the Meal Begins (Englisch) Gebundene Ausgabe – 22. Oktober 2002

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Many of the best restaurants tantalize diners' palates with charming, intensely flavored tastes that tickle the tongue and delight the eye. A tiny serving to whet the palate, an amuse-bouche (literally, "mouth amusement") sets diners up for what is to come. Rick Tramonto, executive chef of Chicago's widely acclaimed Tru restaurant, is well known for his passion for and commitment to these bite-size treats. In Amuse-Bouche: Little Bites That Delight Before the Meal Begins, he shares the art of creating these miniature delights. While most people won't find many occasions to serve amuse-bouche at home, the recipes are easily adapted to become passed hors d'oeuvres, first courses, or even main courses. From Chilled Fava Bean Soup with Seared Scallops, to Blue Cheese Foam with Port Wine Reduction, to Charred Lamb with Truffled Vinaigrette and Oven-Dried Tomatoes, this book offers something for every taste. Surprisingly, most of the dishes are exceedingly simple to prepare, often consisting of just four or five ingredients. As might be expected, the success of the recipes is dependent not so much on involved cooking techniques or complicated combinations of flavors but rather on the selection of a few high-quality ingredients. Creamy Corn Grits with Butternut Squash and Sweet Corn, for instance, starts with ever-so-humble beginnings to ultimately showcase the bright flavor of corn and the hearty sweetness of butternut squash. With more than a hundred clever and inspiring recipes, Amuse-Bouche will surely not fail to amuse. --Robin Donovan


"Rick Tramonto's Amuse-Bouche is a 'Tru' delight! Who said cooking had to be difficult? Rick will guide you in transforming a few ingredients into perfect little palate teasers. This book is destined to be an indispensable part of your cooking library."
--THOMAS KELLER, The French Laundry

"Rick Tramonto dazzled America with his groundbreaking food and audacious presentations at Tru. Now he brings his inventiveness and creative spirit to the uniquely exciting subject of marvelous miniature mouthfuls. Be
prepared to be amused."
--PATRICK O'CONNELL, The Inn at Little Washington

"The amuse-bouche is the best way for a great chef to express his big ideas in small bites."

"This book captures the whimsical and yet deeply satisfying soul of Rick Tramonto's complex food art, and yet makes it real for the ambitious home cook. Although the book is conceptually like James Joyce's Ulysses, on my palate the tastes are more like Tom Robbins's Even Cowgirls Get the Blues. I love both sides of the coin."

“Rick Tramonto is one of America’s most creative chefs at work today. The tiny tastes Rick teaches us to prepare will light up any table with the spark that every great dinner party needs. This book will help any cook to unleash his or her imagination and transform any meal into an experience. These amuse-bouche stimulate not only the palate, but the conversation as well.”
Michael Lomonaco, Noche


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93 von 95 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
What a dazzling way to start a meal 22. Oktober 2002
Von The Bee Bee - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
I expected the worst when I first bought this book. You know, the usual "just five minutes from raw ingredients to table" sort of promise that ends up being as hollow as a celery stalk. This book actually delivers on its rather bold premise. The recipes are technique-heavy, but ingredient light. If you have the items on hand (some are downright exotic), you have a poretty fair chance of getting these tasty openers in your guests' mouths in very little time. This is not a cookbook for beginners, but if you are comfortable with fairly involved techniques, then you'll have a GREAT time trying out these interesting and challenging recipes. A true must-have for the complete entertainer!
92 von 95 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Interesting, but lacks intensity 11. Januar 2004
Von Ein Kunde - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
I recieved this book as a gift, and so far have made the "Champagne Saffron Sorbet" which was expensive to make- it required a whole bottle of champagne for 1 quart of sorbet, but nonetheless it was the best sorbet I have ever had in my life. I also tried the "charred lamb with oven dried tomatoes" and the "fig with prosciutto and marscarpone foam". I found the amuse juice section unique- the "pomegranate juice with clove" is painstaking but rewarding (juicing 7 pomegranates) and the "carrot juice with ginger syrup" was refreshing.
The photography is beautiful, but the book requires some special equipment: a juicer, a terrine mold, an ice cream machine, and a foam charger. If you are a serious chef, as I am, you will enjoy this book immensely, although it is very focused, and is not going to produce a meal!
134 von 143 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Great book for professionals and serious foodies. 27. Mai 2005
Von B. Marold - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
`amuse-bouche' by Chicago Tru restaurant owner / chef Rick Tramonto is all about a newly trendy corner of French cuisine which arrive before the appetizer, are generally offered for free by the restaurant, and are `Little bites of food to amuse the mouth, invigorate the palate, whet the appetite...' as stated by author.

The value of this book is based largely on the fact that, to my knowledge, there is no other book on the subject available in English which even addresses this subject, let alone does it as well as Sr. Tramonto. The primary value of `amuse-bouche' to the average amateur cook / entertainer is that it gives one the chance to present a small amount of relatively expensive ingredients such as caviar, truffles, foie gras, or sushi grade tuna in a dramatic setting. The dish has the added virtue of challenging the host's ingenuity in presenting these `little bites'.

The disadvantages are that for a single bite of food, these dishes can be a lot of work. As Tramonto prepares them, there is a relatively large amount of pureeing, straining, blanching, grinding, mixing, and reducing going on to distill the ingredients into a powerful taste which has but one chance to make an impression. Compare to this the utterly simple composition of many antipasti, often based on nothing more than a joining of bread or cured ham or olives or fruit or cheese with one another, possibly with the addition of olive oil, a tapenade, or a pesto. The problem lies in the fact that the flavors and the presentation of the amuse-bouche must be exceptionally strong and unusual. The great tripod of antipasto flavors of salty plus oily plus bitter just doesn't cut it, if only because they are so familiar to experienced eaters already.

For the professional chef, this book is probably one of the most interesting and useful they can get if they are interested in boosting the cachet of their restaurant. The book presents nine different types of dishes. These are:

Soup. This is a type of bite where you get lots of bang for the effort you put into the preparation. On the one hand, almost all these soups are creamed, requiring lots of pureeing and straining, especially of ingredients that were not necessarily created to go easily through a strainer, such as the fibrous parts of asparagus. On the other hand, you get lots of economies of scale. With a single run through, you can make enough for eight or sixteen with the same effort as it takes to make one.

Vegetables. These give more work per serving, as you have the job of creating both a sauce and a finely cut or grilled vegetable to lay on top of the sauce. Many are based on terrines which are easy for a trained chef, but which may be a bit much for the amateur.

Pasta and Grain. The heavy lifting here comes from skills needed to pipe sauces into hollow pasta shapes. There almost seems like a special effort is being made to turn a frittata, a very easy dish, into something difficult, which, due to its small size, creates very few servings from a style of dish which is famous for creating easy tapas and antipastos.

Fish and Seafood. This is probably a category where the strong tastes of the fresh ingredients will do most of the work for you. For most people, a single bite of raw tuna, nicely dressed for the evening, is about all they will want. But, even these get their share of aspics, flavored oils, and sauces, which are a breeze to whip up when you have a battalion of sous chefs.

Meat and Poultry: The realm of forcemeats, mousses, foie gras, and cured hams. Many dishes familiar to fans of hors d'ourves everywhere.

Forks and Spoons. More of a method of presentation than a class of ingredients. These recipes involve combining purees or soups with a spoon and long stringy things with a fork, or integrating the utensil into the presentation as the obvious means to eat the food.

Juice. This may be the simplest variety, as all you really need is a good juicer, the primary fruit or vegetable, and the appropriate spices.

Foam. This is the land of the famous Spanish chef Ferran Adria of Barcelona. Having never actually used a foamer, I have no idea how hard it is. I saw Masaharu Morimoto use one on `Iron Chef America', but then he has probably done it a thousand times over, so he will make it look easy. I can tell from the recipes that in order to foam, you must first puree. No free lunch here!

Sorbet. More specialized machines, as in order to create a decent sorbet, you need some kind of ice cream machine. Take my word for it, sticking sugary fruit juice in the freezer doesn't do it!

The last chapter contains basic pantry recipes for intermediate ingredients such as stocks and flavored oils or tuiles and crackers to build presentations.

I generally put little value on photographs in a cookbook, but in this case, they are essential. Half the value of spending all this time on a single bite is to load it up with all the bang you can muster, including dramatic presentations. These do not have to be expensive. I was particularly impressed by the one done using little paper cups commonly available at fast food outlets for condiments. I was also especially fond of the miniatures made to look like something else. Thomas Keller has based much of his reputation on such clever presentations. It is easy to miss, as it is done with light pastel lettering, but each dish is labeled by the best season for it's principal ingredients.

I think this book is a must for chefs and foodies. This is not a subject you get on the Food Network, except as dishes on `Iron Chef'.

Highly recommended for all `haute cuisine' lovers.
21 von 21 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Eye candy with excellent recipes 13. April 2006
Von Amalfi Coast Girl - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
To put this review into perspective for you, it is written by a serious student of cooking that has been actively studying food on their own for 25 years. I have been focusing on Italian food for the last 10 years. My favorite cookbook is "The Professional Chef" by the Culinary Institute of America.

If you are a serious home cook you will love this book.

The photography in this book is nice and the food styling is beautiful. If you love to entertain and/or you want the meals you serve your family and friends to be gorgeous you will get so many ideas reading this book.

The directions for the recipes are very thorough and well written. I believe that a serious beginner could follow these recipes without a problem.

I have tried many of the recipes in this book all to rave reviews. I particularly enjoyed the chapter on foams. The "cream whippers" are expensive, but they are extremely fun to use.

This book does not need to be used just for small bites. It is as simple as just making fewer portions from the same recipe.

This book is highly recommended for anyone that is serious about cooking.
29 von 32 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Wonderful and Doable! 21. März 2003
Von Sydney's Mom - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
So many celebrity recipies are impossible to recreate at home. But these can really be done! If you want to spend an hour putting together a one-bite amuse-bouche, which will set the stage for everything to come after, this is the book for you. And it looks terrific, the photography is beautiful, and it is a wonderful addition to a gourmet library.
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