Book - 2014
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"A full repertoire of the many recipes served at the beloved Lower East Side restaurant Prune over the last thirteen years from one of America's most recognized chefs and established literary talents. The recipes are written from the unique perspective of cook to cook, as if Gabrielle were addressing her own line cooks, some seasoned, some green, with all of the essential elements provided to getting a dish just right -- all presented in a way that will make total sense to home cooks, too"--
Publisher: New York : Random House, ©2014.
ISBN: 9780812994094
Characteristics: 567 pages :,colour illustrations ;,26 cm.
Additional Contributors: Wolfinger, Eric - Photographer


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Jul 18, 2016

I lived in NYC when Prune opened and while I never made it there, GH took the city by storm. The rustic recipes in this book probably fly really well in the restaurant, but for the home cook, they're a little daunting and somewhat unappetizing, sorry to say. Love the style of the book, though, with its stains and handwritten notes.

ksoles Dec 22, 2014

Now a landmark on Manhattan's Lower East Side, the hip yet unpretentious Prune has drawn lines down the block for 15 years. Finally, after the success of her memoir, "Blood, Bones & Butter," chef Gabrielle Hamilton has provided a thick anthology of recipes from her restaurant. To call "Prune" a cookbook seems phony; Hamilton has not written it for the home cook but instead asks the reader to assume the identity of a line cook.

Hamilton provides neither an introduction to explain her approach nor headnotes to contextualize any dish. Somewhat maddeningly, she even eschews an index. Her recipes use industry jargon and take for granted a moderate degree of kitchen knowledge and skill. She certainly won't remind you to preheat the oven and she often throws in condiments or ingredients for serving in the instructions that don't appear in the ingredient list. But, if you read and prepare accordingly, the book can deliver exciting food by way of clever design. Recipes include Canned Sardines with Triscuits, Dijon Mustard and Cornichons; Shaved Celery, Fennel, and Radish Salad with Buttered Valedeon Toasts; and Mackerel Escabeche, Sliced Sweet Capicola Buttered Rye Cracker, and Celery Leaves.

The pages of the book resemble those of a wrinkled, food-stained kitchen notebook, complete with instructions for multiplying portions for service and hand-scrawled messages clarifying the imperative state of ingredients: "Fresh. Seriously. Pay attention. I have seen some wilted crap come out of this kitchen." Apparently, Hamilton pulled the handwritten notes from her real notebooks, a fact which emphasizes her candid, uncompromising voice. Though the voice doesn't always sound rosy, it certainly sounds honest: "I know this one is a bitch to prep," she writes of gazpacho. "Sorry."

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