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Cocolat by Alice Medrich

CLS's picture

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Last one for me - books that are truly exceptional, that is. This one is definitely exceptional.

For me, the primary criteria for an exceptional cookbook is that
b if you follow the directions the recipe turns out the way it is supposed to!
Unfortunately, and all too often, this is not the case. Not so with this book. Alice Medrich wrote a cookbook of incredible, beautiful desserts that look fantastic and taste even better. What's amazing is that she gave detailed instruction, explanation and direction on how to produce them in your home, and I am here to tell you that if you read her instructions and do exactly what she tells you to do you will have incredible results. This is one of my very favorite cookbooks, one that I can't imagine my baking life without. Marcel Desaulnier says he's the "King of Chocolate". Well, sit down, Mr. Desaulnier, 'cause you ain't got nothin' on Alice Medrich. I've baked from his books and her books and IMHO, her books are so far superior that his don't even compare.

CLS's picture

(post #62572, reply #1 of 5)

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Favorite recipes? Can't say that I have one. I have made about 90% of the recipes in this book and I loved them all. But my favorite part of the book (besides the photos! )is the back part of the book called "Building Blocks". In it she gives detailed instructions for producing genoise, sponge, custard, ganache, french buttercream, meringues, caramilized nuts and soaking syrups. Everything you need to make YOUR OWN desserts once you are feeling more confident.

Jen_M.'s picture

(post #62572, reply #2 of 5)

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I second this one-- everything I make from here turns out so beautiful that I always have to take a picture. I like the hazelnut torte, and the chocolate marquise is the best-- why bother with chocolate mousse? The Queen of Sheba torte is great too-- I'm always amazed at how beautiful the marbled glaze turns out.

CLS's picture

(post #62572, reply #3 of 5)

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And aren't her directions easy to follow, Jen? I've made the chocolate ruffle torte (the one with all the chocolate ruffles all around) many times, and it is not as difficult as it looks at all! Alice is one of my heros. She really has a knack for teaching. What I wouldn't give to meet her just once so I can convey how much she's inspired me and taught me.

Jen_M.'s picture

(post #62572, reply #4 of 5)

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Yes! Chocolate can be so finicky, but she makes everything so clear. I'll have to try the ruffle torte! I like her other cookbooks too, but nothing is like Cocolat. What could one possibly do for a followup to that?

Jean_'s picture

(post #62572, reply #5 of 5)

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Well, I found this one for $15 used. Stop telling me about all of these wonderful books...I love to shop for bargains and have already rearranged my shelves once!!