or Connect
ChefTalk.com › ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Food & Equipment Reviews › Cookbook Reviews › Ma Gastronomie, good for a home cook?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Ma Gastronomie, good for a home cook?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

    Hello all,

 

   I can be a bit odd when it comes to buying cookbooks, or books that concern food.  I don't want to end up with an excess of books that I never read...or rarely use.  Instead, I would like a small selection of books that I aim to own.  Many times I'll check books out of my local library and give them a read and decide if this is a book that I'd like to own.

 

   I didn't find much information, here at ChefTalk, reviewing the book Ma Gastronomie, by Fernand Point.  Doing a little searching on the books title leaves me to believe that I won't find anyone who will talk badly about this book, but would this book be useful to a home cook such as myself?

 

    I know that this book is referred to by many as a classic, and while I can appreciate that I don't want to own it simply because it is a classic.  On the other hand, if it were useful reading to me...I enjoy collecting books in their earlier printings (English versions only), so I may seek one out...but I can't get too ridiculous with the price.

 

   Has anyone got any thoughts on the book?

 

  thanks,

  dan

Gear mentioned in this thread:

post #2 of 7

I can't recall (but haven't done a search, either) any discussion about it.

 

But from your point of view, Dan, it's a book to pass on. It is not a cookbook. And, in fact, it's a not-very-well written (or, at least, translated) autobiography.

 

As an aside, you sound apologetic for using the library. Why so? If you have the opportuntiy to check out a book before buying it, and don't, then you have something to be sorry about. In fact, you should be expanding that resource by using the ILL. That's my 2 cents, anyway.

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
Reply
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
Reply
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 

    Hi KYH,

 

 

   I do use my library.  Most times I would rather check a book out from the library,rather than own it.  I just don't like to have a bunch of books around if I'm not serious about reading/using them.  Checking books out of the library allows me to give the book a read before deciding if it will get a spot on the shelf.

 

    I'm a little unsure of what Ma Gastromie is about.  From other reviews it was difficult to tell exactly what the book was about.  I'm not really looking for a cookbook.  I got somewhat of an impression that the book was about food, flavors and executing a vision.  

 

  as always...thanks for your input!

  dan

post #4 of 7

I don't think it was the reviews that confused you. Frankly, after reading it several times, I'm unsure about what the book is all about.

 

In theory, it's the story of  Point's life in food. But I found it to be very confused, often pointless, and totally unfocused. I gained no insights into the man, his vision, or his restaurant. Finally just gave it away, as it was wasting space on the bookshelf.

 

Normally I don't give books away. If I really like a book, I'll buy additional copies to give as gifts. So that tells you something.

 

There's no question that Fernand Point was one of the great chefs of the 20th century; and Le Pyramid set the bar for what fine dining is all about. And, as I said, it may be the translator's fault. But the book doesn't reflect much of who he was, or what he accomplished.

 

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
Reply
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
Reply
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KYHeirloomer View Post

I don't think it was the reviews that confused you. Frankly, after reading it several times, I'm unsure about what the book is all about.

 


   Oh that's funny!  Thanks for your honesty.

 

    Is there a book that can offer me what I'm looking for?  I'm not really looking for a cookbook or book that describes proper technique.   I'm not sure if anything like this exists, and I'm not doing a very good job describing what I want.  I was thinking Fernand Point's view may offer a nice perspective on flavors, food and the execution of bringing it all together on a plate...something a bit more fitting than (say) Jeffrey Steingarten's books (which are still a good read...in it's own way).  I've read the Flavor Bible, and while good...it's not what I'm looking for in this case either.

 

 

    Thanks!

 

  dan

post #6 of 7

 

Hi! Do you know the Larousse gastronomy lexicon? I would like to buy it. It seems to be very detailed. 

post #7 of 7

than (say) Jeffrey Steingarten's books (which are still a good read...in it's own way).  

 

I was actually a little disappointed with Steingarten's books. Not that they aren't a good read, they are. But they lack the acerbic wit he displays so well on Iron Chef and the like. Indeed, I find many of his essays in Vogue to be better written than the books. Alas! frown.gif

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
Reply
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Cookbook Reviews

Gear mentioned in this thread:

ChefTalk.com › ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Food & Equipment Reviews › Cookbook Reviews › Ma Gastronomie, good for a home cook?