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Bruce Aidells's Complete Book of Pork: A Guide to Buying, Storing, and Cooking the World's Favorite Meat (Englisch) Gebundene Ausgabe – 26. Oktober 2004

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With such past triumphs as Hot Links and Country Flavor, Real Beer and Good Eats and The Complete Meat Cookbook Bruce Aidells has established himself as a god-like carnivore among mere mortals. His taste buds know no bounds, his thirst for the next best recipe absolutely unquenchable. "I am a restless cook and adventurous eater," he says in the beginning of Bruce Aidells's Complete Book of Pork, perhaps his greatest cookbook yet.

Maybe the dog has been hooked up with humankind longer than the pig, and has wandered into regions pigs knowingly eschew, like the Arctic. But pigs and people share a long, delicious history the dog can only sniff at, and longingly at that; an intimacy, if you will, unmatched in any other cross-species relationship. Aidells celebrates this connection. He gives the reader a brief history of the pig, then delivers definitive instructions on how to select great pork, and, in a general overview, how the flavor it and cook it to best advantage. He honors his subject and elevates his reader.

The recipes that follow have only one thing in common: Bruce Aidells loves them. They come from all corners of the world, from friends and from professionals, and from deep personal experience. They cover breakfasts treats, hors d'oeuvres, appetizers, and salads (Chopped Grilled Vegetable Salad with Grilled Pork Medallions); chops and steaks, scallops and cutlets (Smoked Pork Chops with Sour Cherry Sauce); kebabs and ribs (North African Marinated Pork kebabs on Couscous with Apricot Sauce); roasts, ham, pot roasts, stews, baked pastas, and casseroles (Grill-Roasted Pork Shoulder Cuban Style).

In each shift among the pork primals Aidells discusses the fitting master recipe, the umbrella technique beneath which truth and beauty unfold. He's a champion of flavor brining and his instructions eliminate any possible confusion. But he saves his soul for the last section, which is given over to some of the best material in print on preserving pork, the making of sausages, pâtés and terrines, bacon and salamis. It's at this point in the book that poignancy kicks in. This final word has the feeling of last word as well. --Schuyler Ingle

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Bruce Aidells is the founder of Aidells Sausage Company and author of nine cookbooks, including The Complete Meat Cookbook, The Complete Sausage Book, the "Meat" and "Poultry" chapters of the revised Joy of Cooking, and the key meat tips in The All New Good Housekeeping Cookbook. He won the 1990 Julia Child Cookbook Award for Hot Links and Country Flavors. His articles appear in numerous publications, including Cooking Light, Bon Appétit, Gourmet, and Food & Wine.


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53 von 55 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Covers the oink to the tail. Very Highly recommended. 10. Dezember 2004
Von B. Marold - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
The author's name is not only above the title, but part of the title of `Bruce Aidells's Complete Book of Pork'. And, the book fully lives up to its title and subtitle, `A Guide to Buying, Storing, and Cooking the World's Favorite Meat'. The book includes absolutely every subject on pork I can think of, including several I did not even expect because I thought they may be too obscure for even a 320 page book on this single subject. Not only do the authors cover their territory; they do it very, very well.

As Aidells states early in the book, this work is for people who like to create their own recipes with pork. While pork may be the world's favorite meat, it may also be one of the most difficult, especially today in the United States, where so much fat has been bread out of our porkers that older James Beard and Joy of Cooking recipes for pork may simply not even work any more, in that there is not enough fat moisture in some cuts to support exposure to high heat for the time needed to get the inside of the meat up to the old standard temperature to insure that chance of trichinosis or botulism is removed. One of the greater ironies of meat cooking is that if you cook pork loin or pork tenderloin with wet heat over 160 degrees Fahrenheit for very long, you will end up with dry, stringy meat in spite of the cooking in water.

So, one of the first and most important parts of the book is how to select cuts of pork and match them to the appropriate cooking method. Regarding selecting meat, I must have been incredibly lucky or terribly inattentive, as I have never seen many of the pathologies against which Aidells warns us. Still, it is very rewarding to know of these things and feel much better prepared to select meat at unfamiliar location such as the new farmer's market or warehouse store.

One surprise in the matching of meat to method is Aidells's counting leg and shin meat among the more tender cuts. The usual rule is that the further from the hoof or the horn, the more tender the meat. Well, I guess this doesn't work for pigs, as they have no horns. But, the principle of cooking tender meat by dry methods (grilling, roasting, sautéing, frying and broiling) and tough meat by wet methods (braising, stewing, poaching and steaming) is as true for pork as it is for beef. One thing that is true of pork and other `white meat' and not true of beef is the efficacy of brining in making the final cooked product moister. Brining pork is a very popular subject which has been explored by all the usual authorities such as Shirley Corriher and Harold McGee. The virtue of Aidells's book is that the technique is discussed in great detail, in connection with all the appropriate recipes.

Aidells's range of recipes for pork is not only broad, it is also of a very high quality. One of the first recipes I examined was for a strata made from sausage meat. As I just finished making a strata recipe from Wolfgang Puck's new book, I was really unhappy that I had not seen Aidells's recipe first, as it appears to be a much more interesting preparation. I was also very pleasantly surprised to see a recipe for a Philippine pork adobo recipe that was better than the one in my Philippine cookbook. The book does not cover every conceivable recipe. There are several famous dishes such as Chinese pork Dim Sum style steamed dumplings that are not in the book, but then, this recipe is more about the technique involved in the dumpling than it is with the pork.

The very best thing I found with this book is that all recipes use relatively simple techniques and equipment. One can spend tens of thousands of dollars on expert smoking equipment, but Aidells shows us how to do it with nothing more than a $100 Weber dome grill. I definitely approve of this. Also, he gives us instructions on how to make fresh sausage using a manual meat grinder, a KitchenAid meat grinding attachment, or a food processor. While I would not want to go through the difficulties of this technique, he even describes how to stuff sausage using a piping bag. I draw the line here and I have no difficulty in investing in the proper KitchenAid apparatus.

In addition to fresh sausage, the authors cover virtually every other pork processing and preserving technique such as making bacon, hams, and cured sausage such as salami. I was especially pleased to see the authors open the chapter on terrines by associating this technique with meatloaf. This association should immediately make pate and Terrine techniques friendlier to a reader who may associate them with old school French cuisine, done by no one who is not wearing a toque. My favorite recipe in this chapter is for a Polpettone Napoletano. I have seen Mario Batali make a polpettone (Italian for large meatball), but it has never quite inspired me as well as Aidells' dish. As written, it serves 12 to 16, so it is a super entertaining dish for delivering protein economically to a buffet crowd of unknown size.

As pork curing products are not standard items even at good local butcher shops, the author provides an excellent list of suppliers including both familiar (Nieman ranch, Dean and Delucca, Penzey's) and unfamiliar sources for speciality meats and materials.

The best thing I can say about this book is that it is every bit as good as expected. And, as this is one of the most useful kinds of books for the creative chef or wannabe creative chef, I say buy it now. You will find what you need and a lot of pleasant surprises as well.
20 von 20 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
An excellent book, with a few minor flaws 17. August 2007
Von Darby - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
This is an excellent book, with a few minor shortcomings.


* This is a solid book, written by an expert on the topic - a butcher and an acclaimed expert sausage maker. He knows his stuff, and he does a passable job of passing along some very useful information ... such as the real story about trichinoa and how to protect yourself without ruining the meat by overcooking, how to spot substandard pork that wasn't slaughtered properly and/or which is getting a bit old/off, how to grind meat without ruining it, etc. That's important stuff which most authors neglect to cover in reasonable depth, if at all.

* Good explanations, and well written head notes for all recipes.

* Tasty, well honed recipes, from around the world, and using good techniques and varied seasoings. I also like the fact that the author borrowed Julia Child's "Master Recipes" system, for covering with one swell foop many recipes at once that differ only in their seasoning/ingredient profile ... the technique is the same, so describe the technique, so that all the related recipes are just variations on a theme. It's the culinary equivalent of give a man a fish vs teach a man to fish.


* Once again, here is a book that's broken down by chapter, but within those individual chapters all recipes appear to be in random order ... and there's no recipe index to help you shop for, much less find in a hurry, a given recipe, even if you know what you're looking for. I mean come on ... how hard can it be to rename recipes like (this is a fictional example) "Billy-Bob's Foot Stompin Tamarind Tenderloin" into say "Tenderloin, Tamarind Marinated", and then sort the whole chapter alphabetically so that everything appear by order of cut and key ingredient/flavor ? If you wanna include a "Billy-Bob Foot Stompin ..." credit somewhere, the place for such things is in the head notes of the applicable recipe, NOT the title. In general I'm not really concerned with who "Billy-Bob" (or whoever) is ... if I want a recipe for, say, tenderloin, I want to be able to do it easily, without having to flip page by page through entire randomly ordered chapters to find it. It's a recurring peeve of mine with a lot of culinary books.

* The author includes a credit for a graphic artist / food stylist. HOWEVER, aside from a diagram of a pig (and it's basic primal cuts) in the in-leaf, there are NO PHOTOS and NO GRAPHICS anywhere in this book. I mean come on ... for a hardcover that includes a overview of meat butchery, and provides recipies for things like ribs, pates, terrines, roulades, and the like (all of which CRY OUT for full color photos) ... for a book like that not to have a single picture is ... well, words fail me. Why even bother mentioning a food stylist / graphic artist if there are no graphics in the book?

* I also wish the author had devoted much more space to basic butchery in his opening chapter, in which he covers only the basic primal cuts of pork. He could have, and should have, given information on how to do things like the following (this is just one example):

> How to buy a whole bone-in loin roast primal, ask the butcher to shave off the chine bone, and then do any number of things to it when you get it home ... such as transform it into a standing rib roast or crown roast (photos please !), break it down into nice thick chops (hence the removal of the chine bone earlier), or how to debone it entirely into a boneless loin (and butterfly and stuff it ... photos please) and make other uses of the bones. I know how to do all those things, but most readers dont - and a book claiming to be "The Complete Book of Pork" should cover such things. I also dont see any recipes for offal yet ... but {as of this writing} I'm still reading.

BOTTOM LINE: This is a great book, with solid techniques and flavors. I'm looking forward to cooking my way though it. Recommended.
23 von 25 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Required for a cook's library 7. Februar 2005
Von Jadepearl - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Bruce Aidell is one of my favorite cookbook writers. Every book he has written has been solid gold in its use and depth of knowledge. For people who are fans of his _complete meat cookbook_ this is the volume to have. the first book is a masterwork for those who need to not only cook meat but to understand its background and want to have substantive knowledge on every aspect of it.

Taking off and enhancing the information found in the pork section he goes truly in depth on the subject of pork. The section on brining today's industrial pork is well worth the price of the book. I am pleased to say that he does not repeat anything from his earlier book so you are definitely getting new material.

Aidell is renowned as one of the early members of the northern California cooking scene and is known to some as the chicken sausage king - yes, it is THAT Aidell who sparked the gourmet sausage movement so, trust the man on his meat.

Everyone can cook from this book since it does not use complicated cooking methods and the spices and ingredients are readily available through the supermarket or from a trusted butcher (uncommon cuts like shin or cheek) it is accessable to anyone.

Highest recommendations for the cooking library and for cooks who prepare a great meal.
6 von 6 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Good Book But You Need Good Pork 14. Juni 2008
Von William K. Halliwell - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
There is a lot to admire in Bruce's large tome on the preparation and cooking of pork; along with chicken, the world's most popular meats. I salute his dedication to detail and his philosophy on the 'flavour brining' of pork, which does work, IF YOU HAVE DECENT PORK TO BEGIN WITH. Something that is NOT Bruce's fault, however, is the world's seeming obsession, and pig producers' obsession with breeding animals without enough fat. Yes, animal fat, is a 'dirty word' in many, health-conscious minds these days but they, as Bruce knows, have got it all wrong. FAT = FLAVOUR. You don't have to EAT the pork fat, but at least, for heaven's sake, have it there during the cooking process. Here, in Australia, we used to breed big, fat, HEALTHY pigs with good coverings of fat. Now, the poor things are more like Twiggy than Miss Piggy! Bruce's book would be of far more benefit to the dining, cooking world, if pig producers stopped listening to the cardiologists and started to take notice of good chefs and cooks, like Bruce.
Let's face it, pork just doesn't taste like pork used to. And, there is that old hangover from the post-WW2 days when a lot of pork was diseased so it had to be cooked to death, thus drying it out and making it unpalatable, even rubbery. Pork meat is RED meat that has had the blood removed. It can now be safely treated like red meat, except for very rare.
Bruce's book is a great book but it shouldn't be necessary, and wouldn't be, if pig producers did the right thing and produced better, rare breed, fatty pigs. However, if you are a lover of good pork, no matter what your supply quality might be, this book will help you make the best of a poor situation. It's a little too detailed for my liking, as a cookbook, but it is an important and wide-ranging work. Good on you Bruce!
William Kenneth Halliwell
Hobart, Tasmania, Australia
4 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Awesome for Pork Lovers! 14. Oktober 2009
Von Yard Girl - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
I bought this book as a gift for my husband's birthday. It is great! We have made many of the recipes and they are easy to follow. It is our go to book for roasts and ribs. You won't be sorry you bought it because it contains recipes for every taste. It really helps to have something to reference for pork recipes that goes well beyond barbeque sauce - although if that's what you love you will find plenty of things to choose from.
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